Simon has broadly ranging expertise in genomics, ecology and evolutionary biology, which he applies to a diverse range of research topics involving New Zealand’s biodiversity, both native and exotic. His research generally seeks to increase our understanding the composition, distribution and evolutionary history of New Zealand’s unique ecosystems. The rich, and largely endemic, mollusc fauna (snails, slugs, bivalves, chitons, squid, octopus, and a few other weird things) is a key focus.
As a Māori (Ngati Porou) scientist, Simon is increasingly involved in research collaborations with iwi/hapu. These projects generally involve working with Māori communities to build capacity and generate data that will inform enhanced kaitiakitanga.