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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Jess Hopf

Jess Hopf

PhD graduate

James Cook University

Jess grew up exploring the intertidal rock-pools characteristic of the chilly Melbourne coast. It was here that her passion for marine science was born. After a working holiday teaching chemistry and physics in Vanuatu she decided to fulfill her childhood dreams by moving to Townville to complete her BSc (Hons) in marine biology at JCU. Her honours work focused on how we could utilise jellyfish statoliths (gravity sensing structures) to explore the ecology of jellyfish medusae.  Adopting a less gelatinous career path, Jess is now working on her PhD in marine ecological modelling. Her current work focuses on using a metapopulation framework to assess the implications of marine reserve networks for the commercially and recreationally important coral trout. She is under the supervision of Prof. Sean Connolly, Prof. Geoff Jones, and Dr. David Williamson.


Australian Research Council Pandora

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Coral Reef Studies