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Tue, 27 Nov 2018

JCU’s global leaders

Green coral and blue water
JCU reef and rainforest researchers are among the top 1% of the world's most influential scientists. Photo: Dr Rob Beaman

Seven James Cook University researchers have been listed amongst the world’s most influential scientists.

Clarivate Analytics has published the list of the top 1% of the globe’s researchers, based on data related to how often other researchers cite their published work.

JCU’s Provost, Professor Chris Cocklin, said it’s a great achievement for so many of the University’s researchers to be included in the list, up from three the previous year.

“These are researchers tackling some of the world’s biggest challenges, including climate change, habitat loss and threats to biodiversity.

“Their inclusion here confirms that, in addition to the significance of their work in its own right, they are also having a positive impact by influencing and inspiring other researchers worldwide.

“Whenever other researchers cite their work, whether it’s as the basis for further enquiry, as supporting evidence, or as new ideas to be challenged and tested, they are playing an essential role in driving science forward, leading the search for the knowledge and ideas needed to build a better future.”

The JCU researchers included in the world’s top 1% of most-cited authors:

  • Professor Joshua Cinner is a Reef Research Leader at the Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (Coral CoE). He uses social science to improve coral reef management and has worked with coastal peoples in the Pacific Islands, South East Asia, East Africa, and the Caribbean to better understand how socioeconomic factors influence the ways in which people use, perceive, and govern coral reefs.
  • Distinguished Professor Geoff Jones is a Chief Investigator at Coral CoE. He has published a career total of more than 280 refereed papers since 1980, mostly on the ecology, behaviour and conservation of marine fishes on tropical coral reefs and in temperate kelp forests.
  • Distinguished Professor Terry Hughes is Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, headquartered at JCU. His research focuses on the linkages between the ecology of reefs and their importance for societies and economies.
  • Distinguished Professor Bill Laurance’s research focuses on impacts of intensive land-uses – such as habitat fragmentation, logging, hunting and wildfires – on tropical forests and their biodiversity.
  • Professor Philip Munday leads the Coral Reef Ecology team at Coral COE. His research focuses on understanding and predicting the impacts that climate change will have on populations and communities of marine fishes, both directly through changes in the physical environment and indirectly through effects on coral reef habitat.
  • Professor Morgan Pratchett is a Chief Investigator at Coral COE. He researches major disturbances that impact coral reef ecosystems, with a view to understanding differential responses and vulnerabilities among coral reef organisms.
  • Distinguished Professor Bob Pressey leads the Conservation Planning group at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies. The group’s activities span theory, modelling, applied studies, and extensive engagement with practitioners across Australia, the Asia-Pacific region, and further afield.

JCU’s researchers are in excellent company – this year’s list includes 17 Nobel laureates.

While the United States tops the national rankings with 2639 researchers in the top one per cent, Australia ranks fifth with 245. Australia’s listings have more than doubled in four years, with 80 researchers making the list in 2014 to 170 in 2018.


Media enquiries: linden.woodward@jcu.edu.au