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In recent years, the Great Barrier Reef has made headlines, not as a tourist destination but as one of Australia's largest environmental battles. Three UQ researchers are diving into projects that can enable better restoration, management and protection of the reef. This includes mapping reef health to the habitats comprising the Great Barrier Reef, predicting reef adaptation in the short to medium term future, and developing scalable methods to control the crown-of-thorns starfish.

Join our experts from the Schools of Biological Sciences, and Earth and Environmental Sciences, Professor Bernie Degnan, Dr Sophie Dove, and Dr Chris Roelfsema, as they discuss the ways that science is helping our Great Barrier Reef.


Image of Bernie Degnan
Professor Bernie Degnan

Bernie Degnan is a Professor and UQ Development Fellow in the School of Biological Sciences. His lab uses invertebrates living on the Great Barrier Reef to understand the genomic, molecular and cellular mechanisms underpinning the formation, evolution and functioning of animals. In the recent past, he has held ARC Professorial and Laureate Fellowships.


Image of Dr Sophie DoveDr Sophie Dove

Major cyclones and consecutive years of heavy flooding have taken a toll on the Great Barrier Reef, confounding research on parameters essential for coral reef growth. Sophie and her team of coral biologists have been exploring the interplay of factors such as temperature, carbon dioxide, acidification, seasonal changes and competitors to answer questions such as which organisms will be the winners in the future on the reef and will they be able to sustain the large biomass of primary and secondary consumers that currently exist on reefs. 

Image of Chris RoelfsemaDr Chris Roelfsema

Dr Chris Roelfsema's research is focused on monitoring and mapping the ecosystem health of coral reefs and seagrass habitats, integrating field and remote sensing image datasets. Currently his team is developing, and implementing approaches to create detailed habitat maps for the 3000 GBR reefs and other reefs in the Asia Pacific region. With a PhD (2009) in coral reef and seagrass remote sensing, he is a senior research fellow at The University of Queensland where next to his research he teaches remote sensing and is co-director of the Remote Sensing Research Centre.  He tries to combine his research with citizen science where for he organises volunteer projects to take care of local reefs, and is a science advisor and trainer with Reef Check Australia and CoralWatch.


About Global Leadership Series

The Global Leadership Series (GLS) is a lively program of events for alumni and community members. Join us for lectures and discussions with the best of the best UQ-related speakers on matters that impact your community and shape your ideas of the world.

The series is an opportunity for you to engage with great minds on global matters, participate in thought-provoking discussions and network with UQ alumni and community members. All alumni, parents, community members and friends are welcome to attend the Global Leadership Series events.

Listen to podcasts of previous GLS events click here


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