Irene is a material scientist who specializes in carbon materials. She has worked in every type of carbon material from graphite to diamond, from nanomaterials to coal. She is a strong advocate for diverse careers pathways in STEM, especially through her work as an Executive Member of the Australian Academy of Science Early- and Mid- Career Researcher Forum.
She completed a PhD at Sussex University in 2007 funded by British Energy Ltd, followed by a position at the CNRS in France developing a benzene detector. In 2009, she moved to Australia where she secured funds for her research through the Australian Research Council by fellowship schemes and Discovery Projects.
She is an avid knitter and sewer.