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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Molly Scott

Molly Scott


I grew up by the beach in Sydney and have been fascinated with the ocean and the marine environment since I can remember. I combined my passion for environmental conservation and the ocean to do Bachelor of Environmental Science (Hons) majoring in marine biology at University of New South Wales, Sydney. My honours project looked at the influence of an artificial reef on fish assemblages in the surrounding pelagic environment using underwater video. After a lifetime of temperate marine systems, I decided to pursue my dream of studying coral reef ecosystems and embark on a PhD with Prof. Morgan Pratchett at ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies. My PhD focuses on the influence of increasing ocean temperature on the behaviour and movement patterns of coral trout, Plectropomus leopardus; the tastiest and one of the most commercially important fisheries species on the Great Barrier Reef. I hope my research will be used for the sustainable management of coral trout fisheries on the Great Barrier Reef and in the Indo-Pacific in the face of rapid environmental change.

Bachelor Environmental Science (Hons1) University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia

James Cook University, Townsville


Australian Research Council Pandora

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Coral Reef Studies