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The Possingham Lab is in the Faculty of Science at The University of Queensland split between two schools – the School of Biological Sciences and the School of Maths and Physics. All of our work is directly supported by The University of Queensland via administration, facilities, grants and research infrastructure.

Most of our research is using decision science thinking to pose and solve conservation problems. We do odd bits of field work – often on birds. We like using models to predict the future, and we like to test those models with new and existing data. We like ecological theory, things that change in space and time and inventing clever ways of extracting information from old data. The mathematical and statistical tools we use are diverse, ranging from the basic to the complex.

Read about a few of our projects in the Research Themes section or for a more casual introduction to lab work – read a few issues of Decision Point.

Most importantly we try to do research that has impact, research that changes the way that the world works.  Our work has helped save hundreds of thousands of square kilometres of woodland and forest and informed the creation of many of the world’s marine protected area systems.

Who are the people the lab?  Anyone who thinks they are in the lab. We have lots of friends, both in the two centres Hugh directs – the ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions (CEED) and the National Environmental Science Programme Threatened Species Recovery Hub - and in over 20 countries around the world. Many of them like to visit – lab meetings and talks are twice a week. If you want to join us, or visit us, go to the opportunities tab.

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Lab twitter feed:

saverygo My talk on global #seabird population change live tweeted by @mfczap below! #psg2017 #seabirdersaturday
saverygo .@PointBlueConSci: Decades of data collection at the Fallaron Islands helps to understand long term changes in seab…
saverygo Impressive at sea survey #seabird survey efforts by @usfws in #Alaska!! Key given increasing interest in offshore d…
saverygo Social attraction to establish new Caspian #tern colonies in the #ColumbiaRiverEstuary: spot the fakes!…
saverygo RT @gall_adri: Looking for a hero #WomeninScience ? you have found one in @PacificSeabirds Lifetime Achievement Award winner Dr. Sarah Wanl…
saverygo In the #USA at a conference, so not seeing much news. Just checked in- bad idea.
saverygo After leaving the Arctic a pair of Sabine's gulls go in different directions - Pacific & Atlantic. #psg2017
saverygo .@cathmckenna: Did you know the Juan de Fuca strait btw Canada and Washington is a biological hotspot needing prote…
saverygo There is a need to focus more on what we need to know and less what is neat to know - George Divoky at @CooperIslandAK. Hear, hear #psg2017
saverygo RT @jenni_pro: What is the consequence of using seabird management strategies when most census data is older than the grad students working…
MariaBeger RT @VernVeitch: There is no long-term future for a healthy environment if coal is allowed to expand
MariaBeger RT @NasherK: New paper: using functional traits 2 unify size spectra from #bacteria to #whales @BlanchardJulia @Trends_Ecol_Evo https://t.c…
MariaBeger RT @BushHeritageAus: Grass trees - Botanically fascinating, and of great ecological and Aboriginal cultural significance
MariaBeger @ProfTerryHughes I agree with you, AND I support #50reefs because if things get bad (looks likely) then getting the best 50 reefs is a start
MariaBeger we need both: go emissions neutral/ negative and drum up global support for local actions to support coral reefs.
MariaBeger RT @DrGregTorda: Is this the beginning of the next mass #coral bleaching on the #GBR? In a neutral ENSO year. @JCUOIRS @CoralCoE @aims_gov_
MariaBeger RT @LidaPetSoede: Scientists to test 50 coral reefs to seek ways to counter climate change
MariaBeger RT @IainBarber: Excited to see @theFSBI's 50th Anniversary Conference (Exeter, July 3-7) taking shape. Join us! Abstract D/L 28/2 @FSBI17 #…
MariaBeger RT @TheFSBI: Abstract submission for #FSBI17 -Understanding Fish Populations - closes on Feb 28th #fishsci @FSBI17
MariaBeger RT @50Reefs: #50Reefs is supported by @BloombergDotOrg, @TiffanyAndCo & @VulcanInc. A global plan to protect coral reefs.
BeyerHawthorne Philae lander en route to comet 67P right now. Exciting moment given the odds of even getting #Rosetta there.
BeyerHawthorne Landowners destroy habitat to dodge immenent protection legislation. Conervation planning must acount for this!
BeyerHawthorne A major problem in conservation planning is finding ways of accounting for myopic reversals of protection. E.g.
BeyerHawthorne Slam on the breaks. We have it all wrong: Tony Abbott adviser warns of threat of 'global cooling'. No, not Apr 1st.
BeyerHawthorne Happy to see a woman has won this years Fields medal for the first time.
AChauvenet RT @RSECJournal: GOOD NEWS! Remote Sensing in Ecology and Conservation has been accepted for indexing in Scopus!
AChauvenet RT @duffy_ma: It can be very dangerous to your long term health to work too much. Please read this very impt post by @SnowHydro https://t.c…
AChauvenet RT @kelsey_sloter: Other folks in Townsville! This is a great opportunity! @jcu @enviro_sci
AChauvenet Applications for @SoapboxScience TOWNSVILLE 2017 closing soon! #womeninSTEMM APPLY NOW
AChauvenet RT @GCITweet: We're expecting big things from our 30 #UQ Global Change Scholars Apps close 28 Feb #ozchat https://t…
AChauvenet RT @NRDC: Monarch populations have plummeted by approximately 90% in just the last two decades, new numbers confirm.
AChauvenet RT @ARC_CEED: Do's and don'ts for scientists who want to shape #policy in @sciencemagazine
AChauvenet RT @ARC_CEED: "Protection Equality" = how equally #ecological features, eg #habitat, r protected New @PLOSONE paper by @AChauvenet @HugePos
AChauvenet RT @conservbytes: New journal ‘Rethinking Ecology’ seeking submissions. Go on — pitch your dangerous, controversial & out-there ideas @Reth
NRMecon RT @AChauvenet: Applications for @SoapboxScience TOWNSVILLE 2017 closing soon! #womeninSTEMM APPLY NOW @ARC_CEED @…
NRMecon Sayed @AREatUWA part of our awesome workshop on monitoring #SES
NRMecon Monitoring social ecological systems @ARC_CEED workshop @UQ_News @GCITweet @j_r_rhodes @sbekessy @MattHHolden
NRMecon First #CEEDConsBEcon experiment! Run by our amazing instructors Steve, Sayed and Lana @ARC_CEED @AREatUWA
NRMecon RT @saverygo: Having strong role models at every stage is important for retention in the leaky pipeline! #WomeninScienceDay Thx to my great…
NRMecon Losses loom larger than gains: 1st day of our wkshop on #behavioraleconomics L Friesen @ARC_CEED @EconomicsUQ
biodiversityBD Wow! As a teen, @BrittanyMWenger created a neural network to improve breast cancer diagnosis. So inspiring!
biodiversityBD RT @SenatorMRoberts: How should government spend $5 billion of taxpayer money currently used on green energy
biodiversityBD @YumMusings But we remembered another notable birthday! Right? Right? :-D
biodiversityBD Malthus introduced the geometric growth concept to legitimise removal of social welfare. Iniquitous in social science, indelible in ecology
biodiversityBD @YumMusings oh-mah-gersh, look at him! *gush*
biodiversityBD RT @TaraGMartin: Observed impacts of climate change - from genes to biomes to people @cyclonewatson @BrettScheffers
biodiversityBD RT @TSCommissioner: Awesome to spend time with 300 Australians fighting #extinction driven by invasive species today. Thanks for having me…
biodiversityBD @Barnaby_Joyce, some good points but there's room for improving efficiency before clearing more habitat. What's the line for nature? #auspol
biodiversityBD @UQ_News's Great Court is full of Caper White Butterflies today in a one in 6-10 year event. Very beautiful:
biodiversityBD RT @diefelcorr: Four environmental reasons why fast-tracking the Carmichael coal mine is a bad idea via @Conversati
MattHHolden RT @ARC_CEED: In the market for a quantitative #conservation job? Here's your #postdoc research opportunity @UQ_sees.
MattHHolden Great example of #math in #politics and #law: the #geometry of #gerrymandering -measuring the "weirdness" of congre…
MattHHolden And neither has an Abel Prize.
MattHHolden RT @NRMecon: Monitoring social ecological systems @ARC_CEED workshop @UQ_News @GCITweet @j_r_rhodes @sbekessy @MattHHolden @duanbiggs @iadi
MattHHolden RT @AngelaMoles1: Applications are open for the 2018 L'Oreal For Women in Science Fellowships. If you're awesome, apply - these are brillia…
MattHHolden RT @katatrepsis: When academics rail against managerialism, this is what we mean: perverse incentives are driven by quotas, targets, rankin…
MattHHolden RT @matthewgburgess: More American jobs depend on ecological restoration than iron & steel mils, coal mining, or logging.
MattHHolden Embrace modeling, use decision frameworks, have an #experimental frame of mind. Advice on embracing uncertainty by…
MattHHolden RT @ARC_CEED: Missed Monday #maps, so here's a new paper on residents' values in #urbanplanning by @sbekessy @cathyoke @Ascelin https://t.c…
cdkuempel RT @Jamie_Woodward_: This exceptionally well-preserved 39,000-year-old woolly rhinoceros carcass was discovered by gold miners in far easte…
cdkuempel RT @sciencemagazine: Remote sensing data is highlighting the conservation hotspots of the Amazon. Read the research: ($)
cdkuempel RT @Bill_Sutherland: Want to research saving tropical forests with colleagues in Cambridge? Postdoc and also PhD ht…
cdkuempel RT @CarlaWildlife: Do you like #coffee but hate #deforestation!? Check this new tool which makes supply chains more transparent! #ItsSoPret
cdkuempel RT @BAlexSimmons: @kerrie_a_wilson @saverygo @ARC_CEED @YumMusings @AChauvenet As of 2015 #CEED researchers hail from 19 countries on 6 con…
cdkuempel RT @HugePossum: Complete certainty is unnecessary for action on #climatechange. When risks and consequences are high, act fast
cdkuempel RT @ProfTerryHughes: The future of #NOAA, the world’s largest repository of climate data, is now in the hands of a climate-change denier ht…
cdkuempel RT @NPCA: FACT 94% Westerners agree our natl parks deserve the resources they need to succeed #FixOurParks via @Roc
cdkuempel RT @mjecoservices: Chile battles devastating wildfires affecting livelihoods and invaluable biodiversity, please help us raise money to sup…
kwekings Retweeted Richard Vize (@RichardVize): How world cities are facing up to health challenge; my @GdnHealthcare...
kwekings RT @RichardVize: How world cities are facing up to health challenge; my @GdnHealthcare analysis drawing on @markbritnell global study https…
kwekings At risk elsewhere thanks to the songbird trade, the straw-headed bulbul bucks the trend in Singapore with an...
kwekings At risk elsewhere thanks to the songbird trade, the straw-headed bulbul bucks the trend in Singapore with an increa…
kwekings Budget 2017: Singapore to impose carbon tax on large direct emitters
kwekings Retweeted Marcus Chua (@marcuschua): Culling of chickens: Base animal management policies on science by...
kwekings RT @marcuschua: Culling of chickens: Base animal management policies on science by @audreytrpST
BonMappin RT @RichardMcLellan: “We need to specifically target #ProtectedAreas to places where habitats are disappearing before it is too late.” http…
BonMappin Some great articles here by @m_dimarco @cdkuempel @AChauvenet @cyclonewatson and others from @ARC_CEED
BonMappin RT @cyclonewatson: Recent massive rates of habitat conversion means PA gains futile in stopping biodiversity criss
BonMappin RT @james_trezise: Pressure on @JoshFrydenberg to save migratory birds and Ramsar listed wetland from major development #auspol https://t…
BonMappin RT @WildlifeObits: Join us & @cyclonewatson in saying goodbye to the Caspian tiger, one of the largest cats to have ever lived 🐯https://t.c…
BonMappin RT @ProfTerryHughes: Thanks to our colleagues @GBRMPA and @AIMS for pulling together to produce this map. @jcu @CoralCoE
BonMappin RT @CarlaWildlife: Wise words of a huge possum: "Decision science is just quantified common sense" @HugePossum #PLCConf16
BonMappin RT @HPWecology: Woinarski: engaging in policy & process is uncomfortable, but ecologists must do it. We can't just talk to ourselves #esa16
BonMappin RT @fudgeh0g: 90 extinct species in Australia since European settlement. We have an obligation to conserve those remaining. Woinarski #esa1
BonMappin RT @physiologyfish: Australia SHOULD be a leader, a model for #conservation success #esa16 says J. Woinarski, right?
mainambui RT @AndrewKSkidmore: Scholarships for #PhD #postdoc researchers @EUFAR_science 2 wk course on #remotesensing essential biodiversity variabl…
mainambui RT @mainambui: @ITCAlumni @SIS_MQ great to reconnect with @AndrewKSkidmore during his talk @EnvScMQ on 'Remote sensing of Essential Biodive…
mainambui @ITCAlumni @SIS_MQ great to reconnect with @AndrewKSkidmore during his talk @EnvScMQ on 'Remote sensing of Essentia…
mainambui RT @NOAAClimate: What happens when ENSO's influence combines with other climate phenomena?
mainambui RT @emilysdarling: Mark your calendars, the next @WIOMSA Symposium is in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania Oct 30 - Nov 4, 2017 #coral #seagrass #man
mainambui @bluecology perhaps package 'sjPlot'?
mainambui @TheWCS @EnvScMQ @ARC_CEED training hydrologists & water managers in Iringa - S. Tanzania on using R for hydrologic…
mainambui @ITCAlumni @LibITC I dont..cant' access my own pdf
mainambui @ITCAlumni @LibITC ..for instance, alumni accounts arent enabled to access academic outputs
mainambui RT @tveitdal: 2016 Will Be Hottest Year (by a big margin), UN Climate Meeting Told
j_a_mcgowan RT @ProfTerryHughes: One of the best articles I've read on why #coral reef scientists do what they do. It's not all gloom and doom.........…
j_a_mcgowan RT @4kgjerde: Craig Smith wins prestigious prize for protecting #deepsea biodiversity. He spearheaded design of massive no-mining reserves…
j_a_mcgowan RT @emeijaard: Borneo's forest values estimated at US$ 205 billion/year. Borneo's GDP is 135 billion. Natural capital obviously missing fro…
j_a_mcgowan RT @rich_: Important to reclaim #deextinction. This isn't de-extinction, it's cloning bits of a dead thing. Real de-extinction is avoided h…
j_a_mcgowan New @ARC_CEED paper: Methods to calculate equity in conservation planning @AChauvenet @AichiTargets
j_a_mcgowan RT @aims_gov_au: 50 000 tiny #corals settled into their new home in @SeaSim_AIMS since #GBR coral spawning last Nov. More info: https://t.c…
j_a_mcgowan RT @cyclonewatson: With 50% of mammals and 20% of birds now threatened by climate change to date, perhaps its time to act?
j_a_mcgowan RT @MattHHolden: Can #forensic #science curtail illegal wildlifetrade enough to prevent #elephant pop. declines? Our #math has something to…
j_a_mcgowan RT @Pablo_Negret: Big opportunities for conservation in post-conflict Colombia but action is needed now! @UQ_News @UQ_sees @ICCB2017 https:…
MorenaMills RT @ICCB2017: Opportunities for conservation in postconflict Colombia featuring @cyclonewatson @Society4ConBio President
MorenaMills RT @EmmaJMcIntosh: Spotto in @OxZooDept - @MorenaMills speaking 1pm 13 Feb in LT A, Zoology Dept @ICCS_updates #conservation
MorenaMills RT @JoeWalston_WCS: How Marine Protected Areas network can best help save sharks and rays
MorenaMills @SallyA ugh. I'm also on a call 11 to midnight!
MorenaMills RT @CarlaWildlife: The Draft Queensland Protected Area Strategy is out for public review for those wanting to comment
MorenaMills Have you heard of TRASE? It's making our supply chains more transparent. Top producers of Soy in the Amazon? Done.…
MorenaMills RT @Fuentes_MMPB: My lab is looking for a a talented and enthusiastic postdoctoral researcher in marine spatial ecology!
MorenaMills @CarlaWildlife @rhodes_group Well done! First confirmation I've seen live tweeted. This may become a trend
MorenaMills RT @csandbrook: Great lectureship available @DICE_Kent for a quant conservation social scientist!
HugePossum RT @SpiritOfBrumby: Shark cull affects nature's balance
HugePossum RT @WCSNewsroom: Government of Myanmar & @TheWCS Announce New Plan To Protect Marine Wildlife and Resources at the #OceanSummit https://t.c…
HugePossum RT @RichFullerUQ: Coastal engineering for conservation - China to debut world's first bird 'airport' at #Tianjin
HugePossum RT @RichFullerUQ: 7 marine conservation postdoc positions in Queensland
HugePossum I am an #actuallivingscientist dedicated to finding solutions to the world's biggest environmental problems
HugePossum RT @margaretsiple: Our paper is online, open access @ConLetters :Financial and Ecological Implications of Global Seafood Mislabeling https:…
HugePossum #postdoc jobs in UK on biodiversity and illegal wildlife trade
HugePossum RT @Ocean_Agency: We just launched #50Reefs at @Economist_WOS - our global plan to save coral reefs from extinction. #OceanSummit https://t…
HugePossum RT @TSCommissioner: 2 days with 20 of Australia's best scientists in the #SavingSpecies game! Looking forward to seeing great ideas grow to…
HugePossum RT @nature_brains: “We don’t triage, we prioritize.” @HugePossum on conserving nature & endangered species.
RKRunting Sad to see Jeffrey Beall's blog gone. Such a useful resource! Who will keep an eye on predatory publishers now?
RKRunting Having a great time at the @oceaniaesforum booth at #2016ACES
RKRunting Congrats @kerrie_a_wilson - Life Scientist of the Year!
RKRunting RT @oceaniaesforum: Hear ye! Hear ye! The call for Town Hall Meetings is now open! Town Hall Meetings offer a sounding board for... https…
RKRunting RT @kerrie_a_wilson: An overview of our research on Borneo
RKRunting RT @LauraEllenDee: Why functional diversity can help #EcosystemServices withstand more variable #temperatures: http…
RKRunting Great new #ECR paper on incorporating socio-ecological systems into restoration planning @ARC_CEED
RKRunting Australia is now a global hotspot for land clearing. I support a call for stronger laws to #ProtectHabitat!
RKRunting RT @megcevans: New paper by the always impressive Jessie Wells: mapping impacts and perceptions of flooding in #Borneo @emeijaard https://t…
RKRunting Great new paper: #carbon can financially out-compete #OilPalm in floodplain landscapes.
christhebirder @mike_young00 I believe it's being discussed but I'm not involved so don't know where that is at. If you can get us funding...? ;-)
christhebirder .@mike_young00 after review the listings will be uploaded onto the IUCN Red List. I'll ask about plans to communicate results
christhebirder Amazing being involved in assessing Australia's squamates for the IUCN, many for the first time @TSR_Hub
christhebirder RT @jamesecology: pro-active conservation planning is essential to save biodiversity in post conflict Colombia @grn
christhebirder RT @WAParksWildlife: Bushfire ALL CLEAR for southern part of BEDFORDALE in the CITY OF ARMADALE
christhebirder RT @JendallKones: @jamesecology explains how increasing human pressures and forest loss are damaging natural world heritage sites https://t…
christhebirder @staffo_sez @Birds_Central @bgosford sorry I was busy procrastinating and my book was at hand!
christhebirder .@Birds_Central @staffo_sez @bgosford Two-spotted Line-blue Nacaduba biocellata
christhebirder RT @grnfirescience: @jamesecologys paper shows increasing forest loss and human pressures in Natural World Heritage Sites @cyclonewatson ht…
vivtulloch New #marxan prioritisation incl. probability of vegetation variability frm #climatechange in #canada @ARC_CEED
vivtulloch RT @megcevans: Based on the volume and quality of her work I am convinced @ayeshatulloch never sleeps #ESA16 (or she has a twin...) @vivtul
vivtulloch RT @HugePossum: Which #coral reefs are a priority for #marineconservation when there are land-based threats #marxan
vivtulloch @HugePossum we need actions not hotspots maps, translates humans hopes dreams and fears about coral reef management into maths #ICRS2016
vivtulloch RT @bluecology: Oil palm expansion is huge in tropics - potential massive #ridgetoreef impact on coral reefs @vivtulloch #ICRS2016
vivtulloch RT @bluecology: Marine protected areas have been key mgmt approach for coral reefs, but don't stop pollution! Need #ridgetoreef mgmt @vivtu
vivtulloch Need to act now with the best data available to guide management action and prevent further reef decline @bluecology #ICRS2016
vivtulloch @bluecology new ridge-to-reef approach solves disconnect btw academic & applied management needs #ICRS2016
rubenvli RT @HugePossum: If you thought natural world heritage sites were safe, think again @cyclonewatson @jamesecology
rubenvli Complementing expert priorities and stakeholder preferences for marine management of Moreton Bay #MBQR2016.@NRMecon
rubenvli RT @JAppliedEcology: Coarse spatial resolutions ⬇ commission errors in species ranges but ⬆ #conservation planning costs

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