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Note: The information below relates to 2024 Postdoctoral Fellowships. Applications for that round closed in October 2023. The process and timing for the 2025 round will be similar to that of 2024. Updated information and application materials will be posted here in about September 2024.
The Lizard Island Postdoctoral Fellowships program has operated since 2008 and 49 awards have been made to date. It is funded by the Lizard Island Reef Research Foundation and its donors. There are currently four named fellowships within the program.
The Isobel Bennett Marine Biology Fellowship is named in recognition of the late Dr Isobel Bennett who was one of Australia's eminent marine biologists. The Hermon Slade Raiatea Foundation has provided funding to the Lizard Island Reef Research Foundation (LIRRF) to enable this fellowship.
The John and Laurine Proud Fellowship is named in recognition of the late Sir John Proud and his late wife, Lady Laurine Proud. Sir John was the founder of the Lizard Island Reef Research Foundation and was a long-term passionate supporter of the Research Station. Lady Proud continued her support after the death of her husband. Their estate now supports this fellowship through the LIRRF.
The Maple-Brown Fellowship is generously funded by Susan Maple-Brown AM, a long-term supporter of LIRS and LIRRF.
The LIRRF Postdoctoral Fellowship is funded by members and friends of the Lizard Island Reef Research Foundation.
We are seeking applications in two categories:
- Biology, ecology, processes or traditional uses of coral reefs
- Taxonomy of little-known fauna or flora at Lizard Island
Fellows are expected to make substantial original contributions in one of these fields. The fellowships are intended to stimulate scientific benefits in addition to the research outcomes through collaboration, research training, and contributing to larger projects.
Applications are assessed by a panel of Australian Museum scientists that includes members of the LIRRF Science Committee. A single application will be considered for all available fellowships.
How to apply
Funding is provided for field expenses at LIRS over one or two years as required. Salary is not provided.
The maximum value of each 2024 fellowship is $19,800 including GST per year for either one or two years. Projects that do not require diving should limit their request to $16,500 including GST.
Fellowship funds must be spent on field work at LIRS. Allowable expenses include bench fees, travel, freight, and field/lab consumables.
Fellowship funds may not be used for salary, for living expenses (such as food while at Lizard Island), or for equipment other than research consumables needed for the project. The fellow's university may not deduct a fee for administering the fellowship.
- Field work must take place between 1 April 2024 and 31 March 2025 for the first year, and in the same period of the subsequent year if a second year is awarded. However, a blackout period applies in November and December unless there are compelling biological reasons for doing the work in those months (e.g. coral spawning, fish recruitment).
- Funding in the second year, if awarded, is subject to suitable progress.
- Reporting, outreach, acknowledgement and other conditions will be detailed in a contract with each successful applicant.
- Despite previous awards in this program to more than one person, these fellowships are now restricted to individual investigators.
- Feedback will not be provided to unsuccessful applicants.
At the time of applying, applicants must:
- hold a PhD degree that was awarded on or after 1 October 2018. If a researcher does not satisfy this criterion and considers that they have an equivalent research qualification or experience of similar duration, then they must determine eligibility by making a case to the Selection Committee at least two weeks before the closing date for applications.
- show that they have the time and resources to conduct the field research and to publish the results in a timely manner. This is usually demonstrated by being employed in a research position for the duration of the fellowship period. In recognition of the reality of early postdoctoral employment, other ways of demonstrating a commitment to completing the research process may be acceptable.
Applicants who do not meet the eligibility criteria will not be considered further.
- Meets the eligibility criteria.
- Has an excellent academic record.
- Has high research output in relation to career stage.
- Has relevant research and fieldwork experience.
- Will significantly advance knowledge in one of two research areas: a) the biology, ecology, processes or traditional use of coral reefs, or b) the taxonomy of little-known fauna or flora at Lizard Island.
- Makes good use of LIRS facilities.
- Is feasible within the limitations of budget and safety regulations.
- Makes efficient usage of fellowship funds.
- Has additional funding available if the fellowship does not cover all planned costs.
- Enables scientific leverage.
- For taxonomic projects, the project will utilise existing collections within the Australian Museum or a state Herbarium, and/or will contribute to those collections. Applicants for taxonomic projects must contact the relevant Collection Manager at the Australian Museum or state Herbarium to determine how the proposed research fits within the collection strategy, and refer to that interaction in the application.
Applications must be submitted online.
Two MS Word documents must be uploaded to the online application form.
- 2024 Project Application Form and
- A curriculum vitae (maximum 4 pages, 12 point font, 3 cm margins; list peer-reviewed publications separately to others).
Applications will be assessed against the selection criteria.
To assist in preparing your application, please consult other sections of this website to learn about LIRS facilities and the number of assistants you will need to bring to comply with the Station's scuba diving and boating regulations. You are welcome to contact LIRS with any queries.
Use the indicative costs for bench fees and travel between Cairns and Lizard Island as provided in the project application form.
Closing date is 27 October 2023.
|27 October 2023||Closing date for applications|
|25 January 2024||Offer made to successful applicants|
|1 April 2024||Funds available|
Past postdoctoral fellows
|2023||Michelle Achlatis||University of Amsterdam||Maple-Brown Family|
|2023||Amanda Pettersen||Sydney Institute of Marine Science||John & Laurine Proud|
|2023||Nina Schiettekatte||University of Hawaii||Isobel Bennett|
|2023||Alejandre Siqueira||James Cook University||Chris Joscelyne|
|2022||Eva McClure||James Cook University||Maple-Brown Family|
|2022||Ariana Lambrides||James Cook University||John & Laurine Proud|
|2022||Fabio Cortesi||University of Queensland||Chris Joscelyne|
|2021||No fellowships awarded due to COVID-19 pandemic|
|2020||William Feeney||Griffith University||LIRRF|
|2020||Stephanie Gardner||University of New South Wales||Raymond E. Purves|
|2020||Christopher Goatley and Simon Brandl||University of New England and University of Perpignan, France||John & Laurine Proud|
|2020||Zegni Triki||Stockholm University, Sweden||Isobel Bennett|
|2019||Bridie Allan||University of Otago, New Zealand||John & Laurine Proud|
|2019||Darko Cotoras||California Academy of Sciences, USA||LIRRF|
|2019||Rohan Brokker||Deakin University||Isobel Bennett|
|2018||Tyler Cyronak||University of California San Diego, USA||Yulgilbar|
|2018||Kristen Anderson King||ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, Australian Institute of Marine Science||Isobel Bennett|
|2018||Daniela Pica||Universita Polytechnica della Marche, Italy||John & Laurine Proud|
|2018||Chiara Pisapia and Steve Doo||California State University Northridge, USA||LIRRF|
|2017||Thomas DiCarlo||University of Western Australia||John & Laurine Proud|
|2017||Zoe Richards||Curtin University||LIRRF|
|2017||Daniela Ceccarelli||Independent researcher||Isobel Bennett|
|2017||Gergely Torda||ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University||Yulgilbar|
|2016||Sandra Binning and Dominique Roche||University of Neuchatel, Switzerland||Yulgilbar|
|2016||Michael Bok||Lund University, Sweden||John & Laurine Proud|
|2016||Rebecca Fox and Jennifer Donelson||University of Technology Sydney||Isobel Bennett|
|2015||Daniela Ceccarelli and Zoe Richards||Independent researchers||John & Laurine Proud|
|2015||Zoe Richards||University of Western Australia||Isobel Bennett|
|2015||Jodie Rummer||ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University||LIRRF|
|2015||Sue-Ann Watson||ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University||Yulgilbar|
|2014||Celia Churchill||University of California Santa Barbara, USA||Coral Reef and Marine Science|
|2014||Jairo Rivera Posada||ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University||John & Laurine Proud|
|2014||Paul York and Peter Macreadie||James Cook University and University of Technology Sydney, respectively||Isobel Bennett|
|2013||Danielle Dixson||Georgia Institute of Technology, USA||Yulgilbar|
|2013||Andrew Hoey||ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University||Isobel Bennett|
|2013||Jairo Rivera Posada||ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University||John & Laurine Proud|
|2012||Ashley Frisch||ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University||John & Laurine Proud|
|2012||Vanessa Messmer||ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University||Isobel Bennett|
|2012||Shelby Temple||University of Bristol, UK||Yulgilbar|
|2011||Stefan Walker||James Cook University||Isobel Bennett|
|2011||Chris Fulton||Australian National University||Yulgilbar|
|2011||Tracey Ainsworth||University of Queensland||John & Laurine Proud (not taken up)|
|2011||Jessica Stella (PhD student)||James Cook University||Yulgilbar|
|2010||Nicola Raihani||Zoological Society of London, UK||John & Laurine Proud|
|2010||Maud Ferrari||University of Saskatchewan, Canada||Isobel Bennett|
|2009||Michael Berumen||James Cook University||John & Laurine Proud|
|2009||Guillermo Diaz-Pulido||Griffith University||Yulgilbar|
|2009||Megan Porter||University of Marlyland Baltimore County, USA||Isobel Bennett|
|2008||Line Bay||Australian Institute of Marine Science||Isobel Bennett|
|2008||Morgan Pratchett||ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and James Cook University||John & Laurine Proud|