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24 June 2011
Fisheries and aquaculture research being carried out at Deakin University's Warrnambool Campus has been ranked among the best in Australia and in the world.
The Australian Research Council's Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) initiative has commended the local research with a four out of five ranking.
An evaluation of four is considered to be "above world standard".
The ERA assesses research quality within Australia's higher education institutions using a combination of indicators and expert review by committees comprising experienced, internationally-recognised experts.
Warrnambool-based researcher Dr Giovanni Turchini said the ranking was good news for the Warrnambool Campus.
"It was unexpected," Dr Turchini said. "I know we are doing good research here in Warrnambool and we would have been very happy to score three, which is a very good result. So, for a small group like ours, to achieve a four rating is quite exceptional."
"Very few research teams/institutions are able to achieve a five rating which is considered well above world standard; and normally these teams are large sized, grouping several professors, academics and technical staff, and are significantly supported."
Warrnambool's Professor of Marine Biology, Gerry Quinn, agreed, pointing out that fisheries and aquaculture research activity at Deakin is currently supported by a small group of very productive academics, including Associate Professor Laurie Laurenson, Dr Paul Jones and Dr Turchini, and the high ranking should make Warrnambool even more attractive to funders.
Dr Turchini added "It will help the image and reputation of our Campus as a place of excellence in research. Our world class ranking will put us in a strong position when funding applications are being considered, and also represents a flagship for Deakin and whole Victorian university sector."
Some of the fisheries and aquaculture research being carried out at the Campus includes:
• Fish nutrition in aquaculture (feed, food, fish and seafood quality)
• Omega-3 fatty acids metabolism in aquatic animals
• GIS and remote sensing applications and marine habitat mapping
• Fish biology, physiology and ecology
• Aquaculture reproduction and culture systems
• Recreational fisheries science
• Water recycling, multiple use and remediation
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