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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Vanessa Messmer

Vanessa Messmer

Research Fellow

James Cook University

+61 (0)7 4781 5531

Research Associate (2011-2013)

Vanessa grew up in a few places, but has her roots in France and Germany. She moved to Townsville in 2000, where she completed a BSc with Honours in Marine Biology in 2003. After working at the University of Perpignan (France) for a couple of years, she returned to JCU and obtained her PhD in 2010. Her research focuses on the causes and consequences of biodiversity loss from a genetic to ecosystem level in coral reef fish assemblages, as well as the effects of climate change on reef organisms

Publications online

Selected Publications



Australian Research Council Pandora

Partner Research Institutions

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Coral Reef Studies