Jessica Melbourne-Thomas




Dr Melbourne-Thomas joined the ACE Ecosystem Impacts Program as an Ecological Statistician in March 2011. She now works as an Ecological Modeller with the Australian Antarctic Division and the ACE CRC. In this role she is interacting and collaborating with data holders and modelers in the CRC and its partner agencies, particularly those participating in the international program Integrating Climate and Ecosystem Dynamics in the Southern Ocean (ICED). More specifically, she is contributing to the development of end-to-end (also known as whole-of-system) models for physical, biogeochemical and foodweb dynamics in the East Antarctic region. This involves developing and testing existing ecosystem model frameworks for Antarctic systems, and identifying coupling points for integrating ecosystem dynamics with regional-scale oceanographic and biogeochemical models. Jess has also developed qualitative models to explore climate change impacts on Antarctic marine foodwebs, as part of the risk assessment component of the ACE Ecosystem Impacts Program.

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Over 70% of our planet is ocean, and life itself evolved in the sea so come and join us on this tour of Planet Ocean! Have you ever wondered about the diversity of marine biota in our oceans? Do you know what a nudibranch is? Or how a kelp forest functions? Did you realise that the ocean ‘pumps’ carbon? Are you interested in how marine systems; from coral reefs to Antarctic ecosystems are managed? This course will introduce you to the fascinating world of our oceans. You will learn about marine life and key features of the ocean system. You will also explore some of the stressors on marine systems caused by human activity. Finally, this course will cover how society might sensibly approach managing those threats into the future.

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