Having locals identify environmental research needs for their own community is a key step to ensuring that research is relevant, appropriate and desirable for communities.

Professor Pressey is Chief Investigator, ecological modeller at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at JCU. He is also a conservation planner with extensive experience in marine, freshwater and terrestrial environments. His experience includes seven years as a private environmental consultant, working mainly on survey and conservation evaluation of freshwater wetlands and nineteen years as a research scientist with the New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service, focused on semi-arid and forest ecosystems.

Professor Natalie Stoeckl is with the Faculty of Law, Business and Creative Arts and the Cairns Institute at James Cook University. She describes herself as an economist with a keen interest in the environmental and social/distributional issues associated with economic growth. Natalie has extensive experience with a variety of non-market valuation techniques.

Dr. Marshall currently leads the Northern Australian chapter of the Social and Economic Sciences Program at CSIRO, and manages a portfolio of projects across a range of primary industries, including cattle grazing, farming, tourism and commercial fishing as well as coastal communities along the Great Barrier Reef. Her research focuses on the relationship between people and natural resources for the purposes of better understanding how strategies can be developed that protect environmental goals whilst minimising any associated social impacts.

Dr Marcus Lane leads a group of researchers concerned with improving Australia's environmental policy and planning.  Read more >

This project will fill critical information gaps about the relative importance of key attributes (or ‘values’) associated with the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area to a variety of different stakeholders and about the way in which those ‘values’ might be effected by a range of external influences (e.g. different types of economic development, increases in population, changes in the mix of visitors).

Planning systems, governance structures and institutions that capture the traditional knowledge and associations of Indigenous peoples into biodiversity decision-making and management remain elusive. Key planning initiatives in the Wet Tropics region have advanced the institutional capability to engage Indigenous peoples into biodiversity management, including the Wet Tropics Regional Agreement, the Aboriginal Cultural and Natural Resource Management Plan, several Indigenous Land Use Agreements (ILUA), and the nomination for national heritage listing of the Aboriginal cultural values.

Through participatory scenario planning with Torres Strait and Papua New Guinean communities and stakeholders, informed by integrated ecosystem and climate modelling, this project aims to explore potential future scenarios for the region, and identify ‘best bet’ strategies to protect livelihoods and achieve sustainable economic development. This will respond in part to the 2010 Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee Inquiry, which recommended an analysis of the vulnerability of the Torres Strait to climate change and other future pressures.

Managers of the world heritage Great Barrier Reef have repeatedly made stronger calls for social science data to assist them in their day-to-day duties. Researchers of Project 10.1 will work directly with the GBRMPA, DEEDI, GBRF, DERM, industry and community to develop world-class social and economic research that will directly facilitate the management of the Great Barrier Reef.


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