Dr Carissa Klein

Senior UQ Postdoc Research Fellow

School of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Faculty of Science
+61 7 336 56074


I am a conservation scientist at The University of Queensland (Australia) in the Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation Science. My primary research interest is in supporting conservation decisions in the Coral Triangle, the world’s epicenter of marine biological diversity, and The Great Barrier Reef. My expertise is in spatial conservation prioritization, answering questions such as: Should we be investing in marine parks or stopping forest clearing to get the most bang-for-our buck in protecting Indonesia’s coral reefs? How can we zone the ocean to meet the needs of multiple stakeholders? I am also involved in projects to do with climate change adaptation, ecosystem services, and sustainable seafood. Currently, I am collaborating with The Nature Conservancy (Melanasia), Wildlife Conservation Society (Fiji and Papua New Guinea), Conservation International (Indonesia), and the World Wildlife Fund (Malaysia and Australia) to apply various spatial conservation prioritization techniques to support conservation decisions.


  • Master of Science, U.C Santa Barbara
  • Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Queensland


  • Jones, Kendall R., Maina, Joseph M., Kark, Salit, McClanahan, Timothy R., Klein, Carissa J. and Beger, Maria (2018) Incorporating feasibility and collaboration into large-scale planning for regional recovery of coral reef fisheries. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 604 211-222. doi:10.3354/meps12743

  • Jones, Kendall R., Klein, Carissa J., Halpern, Benjamin S., Venter, Oscar, Grantham, Hedley, Kuempel, Caitlin D., Shumway, Nicole, Friedlander, Alan M., Possingham, Hugh P. and Watson, James E. M. (2018) The location and protection status of earth's diminishing marine wilderness. Current Biology, 28 15: 2506-2512.e3. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2018.06.010

  • Brito-Morales, Isaac, García Molinos, Jorge, Schoeman, David S., Burrows, Michael T., Poloczanska, Elvira S., Brown, Christopher J., Ferrier, Simon, Harwood, Tom D., Klein, Carissa J., McDonald-Madden, Eve, Moore, Pippa J., Pandolfi, John M., Watson, James E. M., Wenger, Amelia S. and Richardson, Anthony J. (2018) Climate velocity can inform conservation in a warming world. Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 33 6: 441-457. doi:10.1016/j.tree.2018.03.009

View all Publications


  • Doctor Philosophy

  • (2019) Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

View all Supervision


Book Chapter

  • Wilson, Kerrie A., Cabeza, Mar and Klein, Carissa J. (2009). Fundamental concepts of spatial conservation prioritization. In Atte Moilanen, Kerrie A. Wilson and Hugh Possingham (Ed.), Spatial conservation prioritization: Quantitative methods and computational tools (pp. 16-27) Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press.

  • Game, Eddie, Carwardine, Josie, Wilson, Kerrie, Watts, Matt, Klein, Carissa and Possingham, Hugh (2007). How to integrate cost, threat and multiple actions into conservation planning for reserves and stewardship. In Martin Taylor and Penelope Figgis (Ed.), Protected areas: buffering nature against climate change (pp. 97-99) Sydney, NSW, Australia: WWF-Australia.

Journal Article

Conference Publication

Other Outputs

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

Completed Supervision