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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Melissa Bos

Melissa Bos

PhD graduate

James Cook University

Melissa graduated with a BSc in Chemistry and Marine Science from the University of Miami, Florida, USA. After working as an environmental consultant, she went back to school to pursue her passion for coral reef conservation. Melissa obtained a MSc from the University of Hawaii at Manoa studying the physical chemistry of coral reef nutrient uptake. During her masters degree she was also adjunct faculty at Hawaii Pacific University and a lecturer for the Institute for Cultural Ecology in Fiji. As a Coral Reef Management Fellow for the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Melissa had a leadership role in designing and implementing coral reef conservation strategies for the State of Hawaii. After the fellowship, Melissa was the Hawaii and Pacific Islands Coordinator for NOAA’s Alliance for Coastal Technologies where she built collaborative partnerships between the technology industry, scientists, and marine resource managers. Combining her experience working with traditional fishing communities and global business leaders (and numerous stakeholders in between), Melissa is pursuing a PhD in socioeconomic values of coral reefs in the Great Barrier Reef and Main Hawaiian Islands and innovative conservation finance instruments to manage reefs. Melissa is jointly supervised by Natalie Stoeckl (School of Business) and Bob Pressey (ARC Centre of Excellence Program 6).


Australian Research Council Pandora

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Coral Reef Studies