We put a high priority on the career development of the next generation of conservation researchers. We have a multi-pronged approach to facilitating the development of this next generation through a focus on training both our CEED early career researchers and through the development of programs to ensure our legacy extends beyond our walls to reach early career researchers from all parts of the globe.


Video Shot ArtMethodologyWebinar Resource: Articulating methodology succinctly in research grant proposals

In this workshop, Kathy Avent (CEED COO) highlights the critical information you need to include to ensure grant application assessors have enough information to be confident your project is valid and feasible. To view this video: follow the link and use the following password: ClearMethods2017    (URL: https://vimeo.com/247060081)


Workshop2013 1

One of the most productive ways we can engage with other researchers and with end users of our science is through workshops. Our workshops frequently produce research collaborations later shared in scientific articles and Decision Point stories.

Workshops are run regularly and are our most popular type of event, with the number of international and domestic attendees growing steadily each year. In 2013 we had a total of over 300 participants in over 20 workshops. We're also proud to have seen the proportion of workshops led by early-career researchers increase over the years, as they take charge and lead new programs of research.

Visiting Fellowship Scheme

Since 2012, the Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions (CEED) has been supporting Early Career Researchers and international researchers through its visiting fellowship scheme.

The aim of the Visiting Fellowship Scheme is threefold:

  1. To create new collaborations, attract new early career researchers to Australia and increase connectedness across Nodes.
  2. To facilitate mentoring of early career researchers
  3. To build professional development skills.

Read more about the Visiting Fellowship Scheme...

CEED Biennial Conferences

CEED Biennial Conference 2013

"CEED's biennial conferences focus on the sharing of ideas as a group - ideas for future CEED work and innovative new ways of doing decision science. These opportunities to come together, share and reflect are crucial for generating interaction and links between all CEED members, both in Australia and overseas..." - Dr Jonathan Rhodes, University of Queensland

Our conferences have been held in 2013 & 2015, and were attended by over 150 people each time.

Training courses

Marxan certificateWe run regular training courses such as:

~ Introduction to Marxan
~ Marxan Train-the-trainer
~ Species distribution modelling
~ Structured decision-making
~ Introduction to Bayesian networks short course 

Student Conference on Conservation Science

SCCS2013 1"Can you imagine 100 keen post graduate students from 30 countries gathered in one place for 10 days of talks, workshops and exchange forums?...I discovered, to my surprise, more than a dozen other students at the conference were working on very similar topics to mine....Our discussions revitalised us, and I left with greater confidence about my research goals..." - Michelle Venter, James Cook University attendee, 2013. (2nd from left in the photograph)

Conservation science students in Australia have access to some of the world’s finest conservation researchers and facilities but the same cannot be said for students working outside of Australia studying in our region. CEED has made many concerted efforts to develop the next generation of conservation scientists both here in Australia and in the Pacific and Asia region, and an excellent example of this is the Student Conference on Conservation Science (SCCS) staged at the University of Queensland in January 2015.

This was the 2nd SCCS in Australia and CEED played a leading role in making both this and the first conference a great success.

The conference brought together around 150 research students for an intensive week of talks, training workshops and field trips. There was also considerable emphasis on communication and network building in the hope that contacts made during the conference would lead to enduring relationships as the students develop into conservation researchers and practitioners.

Twenty four fully paid scholarships were offered to early career researchers, covering all transport, accommodation, conference registration, social activities and excursions. Scholarship holders were from 15 different countries. Over 80 participants came from all over the South East Asia and Pacific region. This was complemented by a similar number of Australian students from all around the country.

“While we used a template that has been tested in other places like Cambridge University, this is the first time this type of conference has been run in the southern hemisphere,” says Professor Hugh Possingham, CEED’s Director and the Convenor of the SCCS. “That it worked so well is testament to the efforts of the many enthusiastic volunteers and organisers involved in this year’s conference.

“We’re proud of what we’ve achieved and I think Australia as a nation should acknowledge the importance of events such as these. Australia needs to shoulder its responsibility more when it comes biodiversity conservation in the region. I estimate that somewhere between Burma and Fiji, taking in Brisbane on the way, there are about a third of all terrestrial species on the planet packed into 10% of the world’s land. And if we dive into the marine realm, the Coral Triangle, which lies the middle of that broad transect, has no parallel on the land in terms of the richness of its marine biodiversity. Yet many of the countries in our region have limited capacity to do the conservation research they need to. Training and skills in ecology, conservation, GIS, communication and conservation economics is absent or limited. The SCCS is one small action we can take as a nation to help redress this situation, and in 2018 we hope to be running this again in Brisbane.”

The SCCS Australia conference was a proud achievement; a first for the southern hemisphere. It was such a success that we are planning another for 2018.

Keep informed on the progress at the official SCCS Australia website at http://www.sccs-aus.org/ 

Leadership Program

The CEED leadership program was an initiative to develop environmental leaders by equipping early career researchers with the scientific and leadership skills necessary to create positive environmental change. The program aimed to both benefit participants’ careers and build on the CEED legacy.

The program began in 2014, stemming from an expressed need for  training beyond technical and analytical skills. There were 14 participants in the 2014-15 cohort, consisting of PhD students in their second year and postdoctoral researchers, representing almost all CEED nodes.

The  program aimed to maintain a balance between the theories and practice of environmental leadership development, and flexibility for participants already committed to their studies.  More details below, but be sure to read the blog developed and maintained by the participants.


The program involved gatherings of the cohort, focused skill training events, and cohort-designed activities that foster team leadership development as well as personalised action plans for self-assessment and growth.


2014 training participants. Left to Right:
Back: Claire Foster, Jeremy Simmonds, Andre Taylor (facilitator), Tanja Straka, Nathalie Butt, Matthew Mitchel, Gerry Ryan.
Middle: Colleen Corrigan, Ramona Maggini, Payal Bal, Sam Nicol, Luke Kelly, Martina Di Fonzo.
Front: Megan Evans, Stephanie Pulsford, Kerrie WilsonHannah Fraser (nee Pearson).

The first cohort began their program with a week of intensive leadership training in November 2014. The week saw participants being mentored and trained by external experts as well as senior researchers from across the nodes. During the week participants covered topics including: media training; facilitation training; career strategy mentoring; skills transfer; and discussing ideas with invited experts.

Special guest speakers included: Dr Peter Cosier, Wentworth Group; Dr Simon Ferrier, CSIRO; Dr Nick Heath, WWF; Professor Paul Meredith, The University of Queensland; Dr Sally Troy, Australian Federal Government (Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry); Professor Helene Marsh, James Cook University; Professor Mike Young, Adelaide University; Kent Redford (WCS) and Dr James Watson (WCS), and; Senator Larissa Waters, Greens Senator.