People and ecosystems

Understanding of the links between coral reef ecosystems, the goods and services they provide to people, and the wellbeing of human societies.


Ecosystem dynamics: past, present and future

Examining the multi-scale dynamics of reefs, from population dynamics to macroevolution


Responding to a changing world

Advancing the fundamental understanding of the key processes underpinning reef resilience.

Coral Bleaching

Coral Bleaching

Coral Reef Studies

From 2005 to 2022, the main node of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies was headquartered at James Cook University in Townsville, Queensland (Australia)

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Confronting and curtailing poaching in marine protected areas


Thursday, Jan 25 2018, 12:00 to 13:00 hrs (AEST)

Building 19 (Kevin Stark Research Building) Room 106 (upstairs), JCU, Townsville
Brock Bergseth
Brock Bergseth

Abstract: Poaching regularly negates the effectiveness of the world’s marine protected areas. Curtailing poaching necessitates gaining a thorough understanding of the problem; upon which targeted behavioural and management interventions can be designed. Yet, assessing and understanding poaching is inherently difficult considering its illegal, cryptic, and often socially undesirable nature. During his thesis, Brock applied a multi-disciplinary approach in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, Australia to address three research gaps that are critical for curtailing poaching: 1) reliably measuring and estimating poaching levels; 2) understanding the influences or behavioural drivers of poaching; and 3) engaging the latent surveillance and enforcement capacity of fishers. Please join us to learn more about Brock’s endeavours to investigate, understand, and provide information to curtail poaching behaviours in marine protected areas.

Biography: Brock grew up in rural Minnesota baling hay, wrangling horses, and trapping the odd backcountry beaver. He quickly developed a love of the outdoors and the natural world while quietly observing the role that humans play as environmental stewards. Brock’s previous studies have included aquatic biology, as well as sociological disciplines such as nonviolent communication and conflict resolution. During his travels through India, Southeast Asia and the South Pacific, he witnessed a seemingly widespread lack of environmental knowledge and stewardship that resulted in the degradation of the regions’ natural resources, including the coral reefs. After several sunset reflection sessions, Brock decided to continue racking up his student debt and complete a masters degree in marine biology at JCU. Brock is now at the end of a PhD, where he utilized multi-disciplinary approaches to investigate poaching behaviours in marine protected areas. Brock recently accepted a CSIRO Postdoctoral Fellowship Position in Data Analytics, Fisheries, Behaviour, and Criminology. During his time in Hobart, he will be investigating compliance behaviour related to Illegal, Unreguated and Unreproted Fishing.


Australian Research Council Pandora

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