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AIMS key player at global symposium

AIMS key player at global symposium


A 25-strong delegation of AIMS researchers and students will travel to Hawaii in June 2016 to present their latest research at the 13th International Coral Reef Symposium, known as ICRS.

The symposium will bring together around 2,500 coral reef scientists, policy makers and managers from 70 different nations. The 6-day program features up-to-date research findings, case histories and management activities, and discussions to improve the application of scientific knowledge for achieving coral reef sustainability.

“The International Coral Reef Symposium, held every four years, is the single largest and most important meeting of coral scientists, managers and policy makers,’ said David Souter, Research Manager at AIMS.

“As Australia’s tropical marine science institute, ICRS provides a great opportunity to showcase AIMS research on an international stage, seek out opportunities for international collaborations, and exchange ideas and information to promote sustainable use, management and conservation of coral reef resources.”  

AIMS is supporting 14 staff members to attend ICRS, with a further four funded through collaborative partnerships. Seven AIMS@JCU students will also benefit from attending such a large international meeting.

Scientists at AIMS are held in high regard by their international colleagues, reflected in their selection to chair the following conference sessions:

  • The impacts of dredging and coastal modification on coral reef ecosystems (Ross Jones)
  • Ocean acidification: Measuring and scaling impacts across multiple scales (Katharina Fabricius)
  • Watershed impacts on coral reefs: Land based sources of pollution (Frederieke Kroon)
  • Large reef predators: ecology, status and management (Michelle Heupel)
  • Informing management decisions for coral reefs in a world of risk and uncertainty (Ken Anthony and Aaron MacNeil)
  • Biogeochemistry of coral reef systems (Christian Lonborg)
  • Citizen science in support of coral reef protection and sustainability (David Bourne)

Attendance at ICRS also presents an opportunity for AIMS to spread the word about its unique research infrastructure, notably the National Sea Simulator (SeaSim).

The SeaSim is a world-class marine research aquarium facility. that allows sophisticated scientific investigation of how complex environmental changes impact marine organisms.

“SeaSim is a unique facility that we opened in 2014,” explained Craig Humphrey, SeaSim Operations Manager.

“It provides very fine control over many environmental variables, which enables researchers to simulate complex, real-life environmental scenarios over long time periods. This capacity was not previously possible in Australia,”  said Craig.

“We will have a booth at ICRS this year, where researchers can come and chat to us about potential collaborations and other research using SeaSim,” Craig said. “Guests will also be able to explore some of our facilities through virtual tours.”