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Director, Marine Ecology Research Centre, Southern Cross University

Professor Peter Harrison is the founding Director of the Marine Ecology Research Centre and the Director of Marine Studies at Southern Cross University. Peter is a recognised world leader in coral reproduction ecology and has been actively researching and teaching a wide range of marine science and ecology programs for more than 30 years. He has been awarded more than $6.4 million in research grants and consultancies (the majority from national and international competitive research grants). He has published more than 130 scientific research papers, books, invited major review chapters and major reports, which have been cited more than 2,700 times (ISI Web of Science citation records 2012); Hirsch citation index = 22.

Peter was a leading member of the coral research team at James Cook University that discovered the mass coral spawning phenomenon on the Great Barrier Reef (Harrison et al. Science: 223: 1186-1189), and was a joint recipient of a prestigious Eureka Prize for Environmental Research for this discovery. He has been awarded multiple prizes for excellence in science research and University teaching including a 2009 Australian Learning and Teaching Council citation for outstanding University Teaching and two University Teaching excellence Awards.

Peter has been appointed by the Minister for the Environment to national committees including the Australian Government's Threatened Species Scientific Committee since 2005, the Christmas Island Expert Working Group 2009-2010, and the National Environmental Research Program Advisory Panel in 2010. Peter is also an appointed member of the Port Curtis and Port Alma Ecosystem Research and Monitoring Program Advisory Panel, the NSW DECCW Marine Fauna Advisory Group, the Sea World Research and Rescue Foundation Scientific Committee, a member of the IUCN Commission on Ecosystem Management (Oceania), a member of the South Pacific Whale Research Consortium, and the Patron of the Banyan Tree Marine Laboratory in the Maldives, central Indian Ocean.


  • –present
    Director, Marine Ecology Research Centre, Southern Cross University