Establishing a research framework for future NESP investment into better understanding of the presence of Box-Jellyfishes (Irukandji) and risks in the Great Barrier Reef

Mike Kingsford 100dpi
Led by: Prof Mike Kingsford, JCU


Project Summary

This project intends to conduct a workshop with key researchers and stakeholders to establish the future research framework for NESP investment into better understanding of box-jellyfishes presence and risk in the Great Barrier Reef. This will include defining the scope of work required to: identify how species of Irukandji and stingers respond to changing water quality conditions, predictions of box-jellyfishes presence based on environmental conditions, determine ecological impacts, innovative management options. We will engage with stakeholders to discuss scientific information already available, research gaps to be filled and develop a framework to guide future NESP research to meet end-user needs.

Problem Statements


The project will conduct a facilitated workshop with key researchers and stakeholders to establish the research framework for future NESP investment in box box-jellyfishes in the GBR. Currently a number of key stakeholders lack a sufficient level of confidence in the information utilized for the safety of GBR users. This results in adversarial debate regarding the extent of the issue and a reduced focus on innovative solutions.

How Research Addresses Problem

Prior to the investment of significant Australian Government funding into further research, it is essential that the stakeholders and researchers set an agreed research agenda that delivers strategic information needed to allow the debate to progress the determination of: risks of envenomation by box jellyfishes in different water conditions and ‘real life’ solutions to stakeholders to mitigate against the risks. Without an agreed research framework, well intended research work will occur in isolation and struggle to achieve end-user acceptance.

Project Keywords

Box jellyfishes; Irukandji; Water quality; Population dynamics; Workshop.

Project Funding

This project is jointly funded through JCU, GU, AIMS and the Australian Government’s National Environmental Science Programme.

Project Publications
NESP TWQ Project 3.6 Final Report
Final Report
Journal Article