Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor

Professor Chris Cocklin
DipBusStud, BSocSci, MA, PhD

Professor Chris Cocklin is the Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor and also fulfils the requirements of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) at James Cook University.

He was appointed to the position of Senior Deputy Vice Chancellor in 2011, having previously served as Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) and Pro Vice-Chancellor of the Faculty of Science, Engineering and IT at JCU. Previously Professor Cocklin was employed for 10 years at Monash University, where he was Head of the School of Geography and Environmental Science and the inaugural Director of the Monash Environment Institute. Professor Cocklin was based at the University of Auckland from 1985-1997.

In his current role Professor Cocklin has oversight responsibility for the seven colleges of JCU and line management responsibility for the two academic divisions in which the colleges are situated. He also holds portfolio responsibility for the Division of Research and Innovation and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs.

His research interests are in resources and environmental policy, agriculture and rural communities, global environmental change, sustainable development, and corporate environmental management. Professor Cocklin is currently involved with two ARC Discovery projects: ‘Sustainable Farming in Australia: Market Instruments for Improved Land Management’ (with A/P Vaughan Higgins of Charles Sturt University and Professor Clive Potter, Imperial College) and ‘The actor and institutional dynamics in emerging socio-technical transitions, (with Profs Rebekah Brown of Monash University & Dean Loorbach, Erasmus University).

Other recent ARC grants were awarded for the projects: ‘Regulation and Governance of Agricultural Biotechnology: GMOs in Australia and the United Kingdom’ (with Prof David Gibbs, Hull); ‘Sustainable Urban Water Governance: Institutional Development and Organisational Change’ (with Prof Rebekah Brown, Monash), and; ‘From Productivism to Multifunctionality: Agri-environmental Governance in Australia and the United Kingdom’ (with Prof Geoff Wilson, Plymouth).

Professor Cocklin is presently a member of the International Scientific Advisory Committee, Great Barrier Reef Foundation, a member of Universities Australia Standing Group on Quality, a Director of the North Queensland Commercialisation Company Pty Ltd and of JCU Enterprises Pty Ltd., a member of the Board of Trustees of the Townsville Grammar School, and he is Chair of the Research Advisory Committee, Program A (Society) and Member of the CRC Advisory Committee for the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities.

From 2009-11 Professor Cocklin was the convenor of the Innovative Research Universities (IRU) Deputy Vice-Chancellors (Research) Group and served at the same time on the Executive Committee of the Deputy Vice-Chancellors (Research) Group, Universities Australia. He was a Member of the Queensland Premier’s Advisory Council on Climate Change from 2008-11. He also served previously as a Member of the Board of Tropical Landscapes Joint Venture and on the Board, Australian Tropical Herbarium. Other positions have included as a Director of Greening Australia (Vic), member of the Victorian Catchment Management Council, and as a member of the Australian Academy of Science National Sustainability Committee. Professor Cocklin was appointed to the Scientific Steering Committee, Global Environmental Change and Human Security (GECHS) Project of the International Human Dimensions of Global Change Programme (IHDP), as Chair of the Australian Eco-share Fund/Sustainability Fund Advisory Committee (on behalf of Westpac Investment Management and Monash University) and as a Director of the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI). In 2004 he was appointed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) as a Lead Author of the Fourth Assessment Report. He was an invited participant in the Prime Minister’s Australia 2020 summit, held in 2008.

Over the course of his career, Professor Cocklin has published more than 200 articles, books, research monographs, technical reports and reviews. He has delivered more than 140 presentations to professional conferences and meetings, including 40 invited/keynote addresses. In addition to his position at JCU, he holds the position of Professorial Fellow in Geography and Environmental Science at Monash University.