ACRS Medal

ACRS as the oldest organisation worldwide to study and protect coral reefs (since 1922), will award a prestigious medal to recognise high achievers in the research and conservation of Australian coral reefs.

This award will be presented at the Annual ACRS Conference and the awardees should give a plenary lecture within 2 years of the award.


ACRS Medal Winners 



Dr Nick Graham (Early Career Researcher Medal)

Dr. Nick Graham is now a Professor at Lancaster University, UK.  He tackles large-scale ecological and social-ecological coral reef issues under the overarching themes of climate change, human use and resilience.







Prof Terry Hughes (Established Researcher Medal)

Dr. Terry Hughes is the Director of the Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies.  His research focuses on the linkages between the ecology of reefs and their importance for societies and economies.






Dr Russell Kelley (Science Advocacy Medal)

Dr. Russell Kelley is a science communication consultant with a special interest in marine subject matter. He is the program director of the Coral Identification Capacity Building Program which runs capacity building / training programs worldwide. Russell's output span scientific papers, book chapters, educational tools and international television productions (writer / director / producer).



 ACRS Medal guidelines

The ACRS Medal will be awarded in sequential years in the following categories, based on an individual's contribution to science and conservation of Australian coral reefs:

i) Established Researcher (ER, > 10 years since PhD awarded)

ii) Early Career Researcher (ECR, < 10 years since PhD awarded)

iii) Science Education and Conservation (SEC)

2018 Early Career Researcher Nomination Process

Nominations for the awards can be made by ACRS members or non-members and should be sent to the ACRS President (via the ACRS Secretary). The nominee must be based in Australia and be a financial member of ACRS at the time of nomination and acceptance (if successful). Self-nominations will be accepted. The 2017 ACRS Medal will be awarded to an individual who has demonstrated an outstanding contribution to the education, conservation or management of Australian coral reefs. The letter of nomination should comprise a completed copy of the Nomination Proforma, including: 

1. A summary of the nominee's contribution to the science, conservation, management, and/or service to Australian coral reefs, detailing the key achievements and their significance

2. A recent CV annotated to highlight key contributions

Additional information may be sought from specialists in the nominee's field.

The nominations will be assessed by a selection panel, chaired by the ACRS President.

The recipient of the award will be presented with a citation and ACRS Medal.

*Download here the 2018 announcement

Selection Criteria

1. Development of new insights into Australian marine environments and systems

2. Contribution to education, conservation and/or management of Australian coral reefs

3. Advances in adaptive management and the creation of techniques now regarded as standard methods

Deadline for Nominations

Nominations for the 2018 Early Career Researcher Medal should be sent to the ACRS Secretary ( by 5 pm on Friday 9th February 2018. Late nominations cannot be accepted. 

Frequency of Awards 

Medals to be awarded in following sequence starting in 2015: 

2015: Early Career Researcher

2016: Established Researcher

2017: Science Advocacy

2018: Early Career Researcher

2019: Established Researcher

2020: No Award - ICRS year

2021: Science Advocacy