Dr Karen Miller

Research Program Director
Sustainable use of north-west marine ecosystems
Contact number
(08) 6369 4007
+61 8 6369 4007
Contact email

My scientific career was founded working on coral reefs, and understanding and sustainably managing them remains my passion. I worked extensively on the Great Barrier Reef through my early research years at UQ, JCU and as an ARC post-doc at the University of Wollongong, then diversified into studying temperate coral ecosystems of the New Zealand fiords and deep sea coral ecosystems in Tasmania, the Southern Ocean and Antarctica. Alongside my focus on corals, I also studied the ecology and early life history of many other benthic marine invertebrates throughout these ecosystems, with a focus in applying molecular tools to understand biodiversity, reproduction and connectivity.


PhD Marine Biology - James Cook University, Townsville AU
BSc (Hons 1) Marine Biology - University of Queensland, Brisbane AU

My current research focuses on understanding the patterns and processes driving the distribution of benthic biodiversity across Australia's NW Shelf.

Research areas

Genetic Diversity, Conservation, Biodiversity, Genetics, Marine Biology, Marine Biodiversity, Marine Ecology, Biodiversity & Conservation, Aquatic Ecosystems, Ecology


Miller KJ, Gunasekera RM (2017) A comparison of genetic connectivity in two deep sea corals to examine whether seamounts are isolated islands or stepping stones for dispersal. Scientific Reports 7: 46103

Younger JL, Emmerson LM, Miller KJ (2016) Palaeoecological changes in Southern Ocean marine predator populations and their environmental drivers. Global Change Biology 22(2):474-493

Keesing J, Strzelecki J, Stower M, Wakeford M, Miller K, Gershwin L, Liu D (2016) Abundant box jellyfish, Chironex sp. (Cnidaria: Cubozoa: Chirodropidae), discovered at depths of over 50 m on western Australian coastal reefs. Scientific Reports 6: 22290

Moore K, Alderslade P, Miller K (2016) A taxonomic revision of the genus Primnoisis Studer [& Wright], 1887 (Coelenterata: Octocorallia: Isididae) using morphological and molecular data. Zootaxa 4075(1):1-141

Younger J, Clucas G, Kooyman G, Weinecke B, Rogers A, Trathan P, Hart T, Miller K (2015) Too much of a good thing; sea ice extent forced Emperor penguins into refugia during the last glacial maximum. Global Change Biology 21(6):2215-2226

Miller K, Mayfield S, Mundy C (2014) Molecular genetics to inform spatial management in benthic invertebrate fisheries: a case study using the Australian Greenlip Abalone. Molecular Ecology 23: 4958-4975

Schmidt-Roach S, Lundgren P, Miller KJ, Gerlach G, Noreen AME, Andreakis N (2013) Assessing hidden species diversity in the coral Pocillopora damicornis from Eastern Australia. Coral Reefs 32: 161-172

Baird HP, Miller KJ, Stark JS (2012) Genetic Population Structure in the Antarctic Benthos: Insights from the Widespread Amphipod, Orchomenella franklini. PLoS One 7(3): e34363

Schmidt-Roach S, Miller K, Woolsey E, Gerlach G, Baird A (2012) Broadcast spawning by Pocillopora species on the Great Barrier Reef. PLoS One 7(12): e50847

Miller KJ, Rowden AA, Williams A, Häussermann V (2011) Out of their depth? Isolated Deep Populations of the Cosmopolitan Coral Desmophyllum dianthus may be Highly Vulnerable to Environmental Change. PLoS One 6(5): e19004

Baird H, Miller K, Stark J (2011) Evidence of hidden biodiversity, ongoing speciation and diverse patterns of genetic structure in giant Antarctic amphipods. Molecular Ecology 20:3439-3454