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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Jacqueline Lau

Jacqueline Lau

Research Fellow

Postdoctoral fellow in climate change and resilient small-scale fisheries (2019-2022)

PhD Environmental Social Science • James Cook University | MPhil in Environment, Society, & Development • University of Cambridge | PhB Sociology (Hons) • The Australian National University |

James Cook University


As of 2023 this site is not actively managed. Visit Jacqui’s research portfolio for the most up to date information. 

Jacqui is currently a research fellow with the College of Arts, Society and Education. In 2023 she was awarded a Discovery Early Career Researcher Award to examine how morality influences adaptation to climate change in communities and industries connected to the the Great Barrier Reef. From 2019-2022, she held a joint post-doctoral research fellowship at the ARC CoE for Coral Reef Studies and WorldFish. Previously, Jacqui studied sociology at the Australian National University (2012), and an MPhil in Environment, Society and Development at the University of Cambridge (2014). During her MPhil she studied the role of identity in an artisanal oyster fishery in The Gambia, which inspired her to pursue a PhD in environmental social science at James Cook University (2019). Under the supervision of Joshua Cinner, Christina Hicks, and Georgina Gurney, her project investigated the multiple values of ecosystem services and environmental justice in coastal communities in Papua New Guinea. Her current research examines issues of justice and climate change resilience in small-scale fisheries and coastal communities in the Pacific, and the influence of morality on community adaptation to environmental change along the Great Barrier Reef.

Publications: see Google scholar

Media: Jacqui writes for The ConversationWorldFish and other media outlets  


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