Karli is a Principal Research Fellow in the Industrial Design program of the School of Architecture and Design, RMIT University, Melbourne.
Associate Professor Karli Verghese is a Principal Research Fellow in the Industrial Design program of the School of Architecture and Design, RMIT University, Melbourne. Her research projects have included the development of decision support tools for packaging, resource efficiency, food waste, Eco-design and one currently being developed for Australia's Antarctic research station (Casey). Research themes include the role of packaging, packaging sustainability, food loss/waste across supply chains, resource efficiency, waste management, and life cycle assessment.
Examples of research projects include the following:
Food waste opportunities in the wholesale and retail sectors: this research provided NSW Environment Protection Authority with a better understanding of the opportunities and barriers to reduce the amount of food waste going to landfill from the wholesale and retail sectors.
Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) in the last frontier: quantifying the environmental impacts and environmental impact reduction strategy for Australia’s Antarctic infrastructure. This project involves working with the Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) to collect and model life cycle impacts from the operations necessary to support human operations on Casey station.
Food supply chain resource efficiency and 'true cost of waste': teaming up with Visy, a global packaging and recycling company and volunteer customers, this project used RMIT's Dynamic Industry Resource Efficiency Calculation Tool (DIRECT) to record and measure resource flows from harvest to retail.
Food waste reduction opportunities in the food manufacturing sector: this project involved working with the Plenty Food Group to develop a true cost of waste calculation tool called Dynamic Industry Resource Efficiency Calculation Tool (DIRECT) directool.com.au.
Food waste insights in the home: working with Banyule City Council, this project involved understanding how households plan, purchase, store, prepare and dispose of food.
Role of packaging in minimising food waste in the supply chain: increased efficiency and waste reduction in the food supply chain can contribute to the global growth in population and demand for food. This report focuses on packaging opportunities that may help to reduce or recover food waste.
The Future of Packaging White Paper: working in conjunction with the Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC) this white paper considered past, current and future issues within a sustainability framework.
Life cycle flows of materials and energy at Scott Base Antarctica: working with Antarctic New Zealand this project used streamlined life cycle assessment to model and analyse material and energy flows to support New Zealand’s Scott base in Antarctica.
Greenfly: was developed with Industrial Designers and helps you design environmentally improved products. It corporates life cycle modelling and EcoDesign strategies showing the environmental impacts of your design choices through strong graphical representation.
PIQET: developed in conjunction with packaging technologists and environmental/sustainability managers, the Packaging Impact Quick Evaluation Tool (PIQET) incorporates life cycle modelling of different packaging formats. RMIT University was involved in its development, leading the research project which started in 2004. PIQET was commercialised in 2009 and RMIT was involved in research, development and support of the tool until 2014.
Australian Packaging Covenant Sustainable Packaging Guidelines: working with the Australian Packaging Covenant Council, this project involved working with 8 APC signatories and documenting how they were using the Sustainable packaging Guidelines in their operations.
- How to reduce your kitchen's impact on global warming, The Conversation, 8th December 2016, Karli Verghese and Stephen Clune,, The Conversation
- Food footprints, ABC Radio National Sunday Extra podcast, 20 November 2016, by Karli Verghese
- 'A DIRECT approach to food waste', PKN Packaging News, July 2014 by Karli Verghese, Simon Lockrey and Marshall Dwyer
- 'Tell the consumer why', PKN Packaging News, May 2014 by Simon Lockrey and Karli Verghese
- 'Putting products into packaging perspective', PKN Packaging News, November 2013 by Simon Lockrey and Karli Verghese
- 'Hard data comes clean on greenwashing', PKN Packaging News, September 2013 by Karli Verghese and Simon Lockrey
- “What’s new in packaging-specific environmental evaluation tools”, Greener Package.com, 30 June 2013, Karli Verghese
- 'Bringing packaging power to the people', PKN Packaging News, June 2013 by Karli Verghese and Simon Lockrey
- 'It's not just a material thing', PKN Packaging News, April 2013 by Karli Verghese and Simon Lockrey
- 'Finding the right tools for sustainability', PKN Packaging News, October 2012 by Karli Verghese and Simon Lockrey
- 'Recyclables, recyclable and recycled - understanding the differences', PKN Packaging News, August 2012 by Karli Verghese and Simon Lockrey
- 'Green goals a heady brew for FMCGs' in PKN Packaging News, June 2012 by Simon Lockrey and Karli Verghese
- Verghese, Karli (2008) By Design on ABC Radio, on February 2008 on plastic bag research, Melbourne
- Carbon footprint of food, Webinair presentation to the Dietitians Association of Australia, 22 August 2017, by Karli Verghese
- Opportunities for reducing food waste in Victoria, Invited panel member to the Victorian Ministerial Food Waste Roundtable, Melbourne Museum, 17 August 2017, by Karli Verghese
- Packaging saves food: a research agenda to combat food waste, Conference paper presented at the 28th IAPRI World Symposium on Packaging, Lausanne Switzerland, May 2017, by Rafael Auras, Stephen Clune, Kaisa Grönman, Marit Kvalvåg Pettersen, Hanne Møller, Annika Olsson, Risto Soukka, Karli Verghese, Renee Wever, Fredrik Wikström, Helén Williams
- Envisaging a future where food waste no longer occurs: packaging's role, Australian Institute of Packaging National Conference, June 2016, by Karli Verghese
- A DIRECT approach to resource efficiency in the food supply chain, Presentation to the Australian Institute of Packaging National Technical Forum, March 2015, by Karli Verghese
- “Packaging's value in minimising product waste”. Invited speaker at Australian packaging Covenant Packaging Assessments for Sustainability Forum, 27 May 2015, Monash Conference Centre, Melbourne, by Karli Verghese
- "What a Waste!!', Invited presentation to the Shining Stars of the Foodservice Industry, GSI Australia, Foodservices Industry Seminar, 21 August 2014, Melbourne, by Karli Verghese
- “Resource efficiency in the food manufacturing sector: A co-designed online tool: presented at 47th Annual AIFST Convention 2014, FOOD – The Final Frontier, Challenges and Opportunities in the 21st Century. Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, Melbourne, June 2014, by Karli Verghese, Simon Lockrey, Maud Rio, Marshall Dwyer, Amanda Elliott
- “The greenhouse gas profile of a “Hungry Planet“; quantifying the impacts of the weekly food purchases including associated packaging and food waste for three families“, paper at the 19th IAPRI Conference, Victoria University, Melbourne, June 2014, by Karli Verghese, Enda Crossin, Stephen Clune, Simon Lockrey, Helen Williams, Maud Rio, and Fredrik Wikstrom
- "Are We Wasting Opportunities?” Invited speaker at Foodservice Today & Tomorrow Conference, Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney, May 2014, by Simon Lockrey and Karli Verghese
- “Packaging in Perspective – Directions Shaping the Future“. Invited speaker at Presentation to the 2014 Australasian Packaging and Industrial Paper Market Outlook Forum, 19 June 2014, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, Melbourne, by Karli Verghese
- “Evaluating the role of packaging in extending shelf life and minimising food waste“ Platform presentation at the World Class Packaging Conference (14-15 November 2013), Hilton on the Park, Melbourne, by Karli Verghese
- “The role of packaging in minimising food waste across the supply chain of the future“Platform presentation at The National Cherry conference (8 August 2013), Rydges Lakeside, Canberra, by Karli Verghese
- “The role of packaging in minimising food waste across the supply chain of the future“ Platform presentation at Smart Supply Chain conference (25 June 2013) Sydney, by Karli Verghese
- Keynote presentation at launch of “The role of packaging in minimising food waste across the supply chain of the future“, Red Lantern Restaurant (24 June 2013) Sydney, by Karli Verghese
- BAppScEnvMan (Haz Materials)
- BSc (Hons)
- FAIP - Fellow of the Australian Institute of Packaging
Office bearer positions for professional associations
- Editorial Board member of Packaging Technology and Science, 2011–present
- Editorial Board member of International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment Regional Editor (Australia), 2011–
- Founding Secretary of the Australian Life Cycle Assessment Society, 2001–2005
- President of the Australian Life Cycle Assessment Society, 2005–2006
- Member of the UNEP/SETAC Life Cycle Initiative Life Cycle Management Working Group, 2004–2006
- Secretary, Victorian Branch of the Australian Institute of Packaging, 1999–2003
- National Board Member of the Australian Institute of Packaging, 2005–2006
- Active member of the SETAC-Europe 'Data Quality and Availability' working group, 1999–2001
- Secretariat of the International Association of Packaging Research Institutes Environment and Packaging Working Group, 1997–2002
Peer refereeing experience
- Journal of Industrial Ecology
- International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment
- Business Strategy and the Environment, Special Issue on Sustainability Accounting
- Packaging Technology and Science
- Greener Management International
- Food Policy
Membership of conference committees
- Member of the Organising Committee and Scientific Sub-Committee, International Association of Packaging Research Institutes (IAPRI) 24th World Conference, Melbourne 2014
- Member of the scientific committee for the 5th International Symposium on Food Packaging – Scientific Developments and supporting Safety and Innovation. Organised by the International Life Sciences Institute – ILSI Europe / Packaging materials task Force to be held 14–16 November 2012 in Berlin, Germany.
- Australian Life Cycle Assessment Society, 5th National Conference on Life Cycle Assessment 'Achieving business benefits from managing life cycle impacts' (2006)
- Australian Life Cycle Assessment Society, 4th National Conference on Life Cycle Assessment 'Sustainability Measures for Decision Support' (2005)
- Australian Institute of Packaging, National Packaging Conference 'Clean and Green' (2002)
- Judge Australian Save Food Packaging Awards (2016 - ongoing)
- Fellow of Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP)
- Judge Australian Packaging Awards (2005, 2006 and 2010)
- Judge Evolution Awards Packaging Magazine (2006)
- Clune, S.,Crossin, E.,Verghese, K. (2017). Systematic review of greenhouse gas emissions for different fresh food categories In: Journal of Cleaner Production, 140, 766 - 783
- Lewis, H.,Downes, J.,Verghese, K.,Young, G. (2017). Food waste opportunities within the food wholesale and retail sectors In: NSW Environment Protection Authority Sydney, Australia
- Lockrey, S.,Nguyen, H.,Crossin, E.,Verghese, K. (2016). Recycling the construction and demolition waste in Vietnam: opportunities and challenges in practice In: Journal of Cleaner Production, 133, 757 - 766
- Lockrey, S.,Verghese, K.,Pears, A.,Taylor, P.,Fennessy, L. (2016). EcoReDesign: Methods an Products for Environmental Change In: RMIT Design Archives Journal, 6, 42 - 50
- Verghese, K.,Hes, D.,Carre, A.,Crossin, E.,Grant, T. (2016). Spreading the life cycle word: the role of RMIT Centre for Design In: RMIT Design Archives Journal, 6, 32 - 41
- Verghese, K.,Lewis, H.,Lockrey, S.,Williams, H. (2015). Packaging's role in minimising food loss and waste across the supply chain In: Packaging Technology and Science, 28, 603 - 620
- Crossin, E.,Verghese, K.,Lockrey, S. (2015). Review of emerging packaging technologies and trends for red meat In: Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) Australia, Sydney
- Wikstrom, F.,Williams, H.,Verghese, K.,Clune, S. (2014). The influence of packaging attributes on consumer behaviour in food-packaging LCA studies - a neglected topic In: Journal of Cleaner Production, 73, 100 - 108
- Verghese, K.,Lockrey, S.,Williams, H. (2014). Districts, Lifestyles and Avoiding Food Waste In: Banyule City Council and Metropolitan Waste Management Group Melbourne, Australia
- Verghese, K.,Lewis, H.,Lockrey, S.,Williams, H. (2013). The role of packaging in minimising food waste in the supply chain of the future In: CHEP Australia Sydney, Australia
- Review of emerging packaging technologies and trends for red meat. Funded by: Meat and Livestock Australia Grant 2014 from (2014 to 2014)
- Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) in the last frontier: quantifying the environmental impacts and environmental impact reduction strategy for Australia's Antarctic infrastructure. Funded by: Australian Antarctic Division Grants pre-2014 from (2013 to 2018)
- Extended environmental benefits of recycling (EEBR) study. Funded by: Department of Environment and Climate Change (NSW) Grant pre-2014 from (2008 to 2009)
- Online RAT: Rapid Assessment Tool for Sustainable Product Development. Funded by: Sustainability Victoria - Competitive from (2007 to 2008)
- Packaging Impact Quick Evaluation Tool (PIQET). Funded by: Department of Communication, InformationTechnology and the Arts (DCITA) from (2006 to 2007)
2 PhD Completions2 PhD Current Supervisions and 2 Masters by Research Current Supervisions