MMRL Staff

Dr Elizabeth Taylor heads a multi-disciplinary team consisting of Research Fellows, full-time Research Engineers, Adjunct Research Associates from various institutions in Singapore, and NUS Research Scholars and students. We believe that interaction among cross-disciplinary teams helps to enhance productivity and creativity with biologists, physical scientists and engineers bringing diverse and complementary expertise to problems that are often outside any one traditional academic discipline.


Research Fellow

Research Engineer

Research Engineer

Dr.Elizabeth Taylor

Dr.Paul James Seekings

Aishwarya Ratheesh

Cony Sumoro

Head Dr.Elizabeth Taylor


Elizabeth Taylor started her career in the medical sciences, graduating from the University of Manchester, UK with a B.Sc. (Hons.) in Pharmacy and, then, in 1980, gaining a Ph.D. in Clinical Pharmacology from St Bartholomew’s Medical College, University of London She worked for one year at the University of Oxford, UK before joining the Department of Medicine in NUS in 1982. In 1988, an enjoyable but hectic sabbatical was spent at the University of Cambridge, UK with her young and rapidly growing family. While studying human cardiovascular biology she realised there was a need for new techniques to observe cellular activity in real-time and in ways that did not significantly interfere with cell physiology. This interest in non-invasive sensing and imaging led to a parallel interest in underwater sensory systems.

From 1993, Dr Taylor worked to establish the Tropical Marine Science Institute, in part so that she could investigate the cognitive abilities of dolphins and also how dolphins and other marine mammals sense their underwater environment – an environment essentially very different from that which we experience on land. This included planning the TMSI, obtaining development funding and the land on which to build the research facility on St John’s Island and also to create laboratories and support facilities on the NUS Campus. During this phase, Dr Taylor coordinated two linked A*STAR research programmes on ‘Marine Biology & Biotechnology’ and ‘Marine Aquaculture’ which led to TMSI’s current strength in Marine Environmental Science. After 6 years as TMSI’s Deputy Director, she was asked to expand and head the Education Programme. Finally, in 2005, she was able to return full time to the Marine Mammal Research she began in 1994 under the ‘Dolphin Study Group’. Establishing 2-way acoustically mediated communication with dolphins in order to study their cognitive abilities remains a favourite topic. Elizabeth Taylor is particularly pleased to be an International Fellow of the Explorers Club, USA, having been proposed by two of the most famous names in marine exploration. She hopes that one day she’ll feel she deserved the nomination. All this and a large family does not leave much time for other interests but a little gardening, cooking, flower arranging, outdoor sports and creative writing help to achieve a balance.

Her research interests include : Underwater Bioacoustics - Dolphin Cognition and Communication, Biosonar. Underwater Vision - The use of visual displays and tactile sensory information to enhance musical appreciation by the hearing impaired. Human Vascular Biology & Cell Imaging.