Peter Harrison, PhD,
Director of Marine Studies, Southern Cross University
Director, Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre
BSc (JCU) 1980, BSc (First Class Honours JCU) 1981, PhD (JCU) 1989

Associate Professor Peter Harrison is the Director of the Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre. Dr Harrison is also the Director of Marine Studies in the School of Environmental Science and Management at Southern Cross University, and Director of SCU Research and Postgraduate Studies at the National Marine Science Centre. Peter has 25 years experience with marine science research, teaching, postgraduate supervision and consultancy work. Peter was a founding member of the postgraduate research team at James Cook University who discovered the mass coral spawning phenomenon on the Great Barrier Reef in 1981, and was a joint recipient of the 1992 Eureka Prize for Environmental Research for this discovery, and subsequent research on this phenomenon. He was also awarded the prize for best performance in Honours at JCU in 1980, and a Southern Cross University Award for Teaching Excellence in 2000.

Peter is interested in all aspects of marine science and its application to marine conservation and management, and has successfully supervised 19 Postgraduate and Honours students (with 18 current Postgraduates and 1 Honours student) and 68 Third Year Integrated Project students on marine topics ranging from whale ecology and conservation, coastal wetland ecology, to coral reef ecology and management. His major research topics and interests include: coral reef ecology and conservation, reef coral reproductive biology and ecology, the effects of pollutants and other stressors on corals and marine communities, subtropical and tropical marine community monitoring, dispersal and biogeography of marine organisms and implications for global networks of marine protected areas, and whale and dolphin ecology and conservation.

Much of Peter's research has focused on the Great Barrier Reef and subtropical reefs in eastern Australia, with additional research in Japan, Micronesia, French Polynesia, the Arabian Gulf and the Caribbean regions. In 1995, he was the Project Leader for a United Nations funded mission to assess the impacts of the Gulf War on the coral reef systems of Kuwait. Peter has published more than 40 papers in refereed journals, conference proceedings, books and invited review chapters, and many other major reports, and has been awarded more than $1.8 million in research grants and consultancy funds. He has also participated in many international and national marine science conferences and workshops, 15 television documentaries and numerous other media interviews, and his photographs have been widely published in international and Australian textbooks, popular books, poster series, magazine articles and newspapers.



© Center for Cetacean Research and Conservation, 2004-13. All photos © Nan Hauser.
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