Dr Marshall (Hal) Hatch AM

Dr Marshall (Hal) Hatch is a biochemist and plant physiologist most renowned for his co-discovery of the C4 photosynthesis process of plants.

Born in Perth in 1932, Dr Hatch moved with his family to Sydney in 1947. He completed a Bachelor of Science at the University of Sydney in 1954 and began working at CSIRO, during which time he also completed a PhD.

In 1959 he received a Fulbright Fellowship to work with Professor Paul Stumpf at the University of California, Davis. Upon returning to Australia, Dr Hatch worked for the Colonial Sugar Refining Company (CSR), where he and Roger Slack uncovered the alternative version of photosynthesis known as the C4 pathway or C4 photosynthesis. In 1967 Dr Hatch spent a year as a Reader in the UQ Botany Department before returning to CSR as head of the biochemistry section. From 1970 until his retirement in 1997, he was chief research scientist in the CSIRO division of plant industry, Canberra. Throughout this time he continued his research into C4 photosynthesis.

Dr Hatch has been recognised with a number of accolades throughout his career, most notably in 1991 with the International Prize for Biology, a remarkably prestigious prize. In 1981 he was named a Member of the Order of Australia, and in 1997 he received a Doctor of Science honoris causa from UQ.


Doctor of Science honoris causa