Julian Clifton

Dr, BA Hull, PhD Liv.

  • The University of Western Australia (M004), 35 Stirling Highway, Room 1.25, Geology and Geography Building, Perth campus

    6009 Crawley


  • 434 Citations
  • 11 h-Index

Personal profile

Future research

I would welcome applications for research supervision from students interested in analysing marine conservation policy and practice within Australia and overseas.
I would also welcome inquiries from students with a broad interest in natural resource management policies, institutions and processes.

Funding overview

Australian Government New Colombo Plan: AUD65,000 awarded in 2016 via a consortium with Murdoch University to support student placements within Indonesia from 2017-2020.

Australian Government AsiaBound programme: AUD21,500 awarded to support undergraduate residential fieldwork in 2014.

UWA/UQ Bilateral Research Collaboration Award: AUD19,000 awarded October 2011 for project entitled 'Stateless stakeholders: facilitating participatory governance in the Coral Triangle', with Dr Wolfram Dressler (UQ); Dr Greg Acciaioli (UWA) and Dr Sarinda Singh (UQ)

Previous positions

2007-date: Lecturer / Senior Lecturer, University of Western Australia
1997-2007: Lecturer / Senior Lecturer, University of Portsmouth, UK

Current projects

Current PhD supervision
Claudia Franca de Abreu: Belonging in postcolonial times: The Guarani revitalisation movement as a means of achieving resilience and wellbeing in indigenous communities
Maria Jose Gonzalez-Bernat: Marine governance and conservation policy in Guatemala PhD submitted March 2018
Harriet Davies: Planning for change in island seascapes: Considering the future of the social-ecological seascape within marine spatial planning
Gracie Jones: Evaluating the impacts of payments for ecosystem services: the ICMS-E programme in Brazil
Asha McNeill: Applying sustainable livelihood concepts to Australian marine protected areas
Rusianti Amat Sugio: Food security and marine resource management in Karimunjawa National Park, Indonesia
Kendra Travaille: The influence of fishery attributes on governing fishery social-ecological system transitions: insights from two Caribbean spiny lobster fishery improvement projects [in collaboration with Stanford University]

PhD completions
Michelle Walker Pyke: How can Indigenous customary knowledge inform understanding of ecological change and enhance the care of freshwater places on the Dampier Peninsula? PhD awarded September 2017.
Genevieve Simpson: Analysing social acceptance of renewable energy policy in Australia: community, industry and government perceptions of residential solar energy PhD awarded March 2017.
Andrew Hill: Factors contributing to the establishment of marine protected areas in Australia PhD awarded July 2014.
Rita Costa Abecasis: The human dimensions of marine protected area establishment in remote island settings: a case study in the Archipelago of the Azores. PhD awarded November 2013.
Emily Ogier: Island-based tourism: governance and use of natural resources at the Houtman Abrolhos Islands, Western Australia. PhD awarded June 2013.

Together with colleagues from University College London and Dalhousie University, I have co-edited a Special Issue of Marine Policy entitled Governing marine protected areas: towards social-ecological resilience through institutional diversity. The Special Issue is available online at http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/0308597X/41
Further details of this project are available at http://mpag.info

Teaching overview

I co-ordinate and deliver material in the following units:
Geographies of a Global City (GEOG1103). This unit explores the cultural, environmental and economic aspects of coastal cities worldwide.
Coastal Conservation and Management (ENVT3306). This is a core unit for students enrolled in the Marine Science major and examines coastal habitats and ecosystems in the context of vulnerability and resilience.
Marine and Coastal Planning and Management (ENVT5502). This postgraduate unit focuses on understanding and analysing integrated coastal zone management, marine spatial planning, marine conservation and resource management within Australia and at the international level.
Climate Change Policy and Planning (PLNG5511). This postgraduate unit examines processes of policy formulation, negotiation and outcomes with respect to climate change. It focuses in particular on understanding how strategies of mitigation and adaptation are devised and implemented at the local, national and international scales.
Conservation, Development and Sustainability (GEOG5502). This is a unit in the Masters of International Development delivered with Greg Acciaoli from Anthropology and Sociology. It takes a critical look at conservation policy and practice with a particular focus on the consequences for local resource users.

I co-ordinate an overseas residential fieldwork unit GEOG2204 titled International Fieldwork in Geography. This unit runs regular and varied fieldwork trips to explore aspects of development, urbanisation and conservation in contrasting settings. Previous destinations and fieldwork leaders include:
2014: Northwest USA (Professor Tonts) and Bali (Dr Clifton)
2015: Barcelona (Drs Maginn and Pauli)
2016: Bali - joint UWA/Murdoch trip (Dr Clifton and Professor Warren)
2017: Northeast Spain (Dr Pauli)
2018: Austria and Germany (Drs Mouat and Leopold)

In 2013, I delivered the Water, Sustainability and Development Semester 1 module in the Master of Integrated Water Management Program organised through the International Water Centre in collaboration with the University of Queensland, Griffith University and Monash University.


My principal research interests lie in processes of interaction and conflict between local user groups and conservation policy-makers in the marine environment. I have a longstanding focus on marine protected area institutions and governance in Indonesia, where conservation policy reflects a complex interaction between international NGOs, national and local government and various local stakeholders. My research interests have recently extended to include evaluations of vulnerability to climate change in fishing communities of the Seychelles along with similar studies of adaptation and resilience in Australian coastal communities. I am also developing a research programme focusing on the potential for community-based tourism development in coastal regions of Myanmar.


Conversational French and beginners Indonesian


  • Marine conservation
  • Marine national parks
  • Marine planning
  • Marine policy
  • Environment in Indonesia and Southeast Asia
  • Small island development and conservation
  • Local communities and natural resource management

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

  • 1 Similar Profiles
protected area Earth & Environmental Sciences
Indonesia Social Sciences
conservation Social Sciences
governance Agriculture & Biology
marine resource Earth & Environmental Sciences
conservation areas Agriculture & Biology
collaborative management Agriculture & Biology
comanagement Earth & Environmental Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2006 2018

Research Output 2003 2018

Changing water system vulnerability in Western Australia's Wheatbelt region

Boruff, B., Biggs, E., Pauli, N., Callow, N. & Clifton, J. 1 Feb 2018 In : Applied Geography. 91, p. 131-143 13 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Western Australia
water supply
supply balance

Understanding social wellbeing and values of small-scale fisheries amongst the Sama-Bajau of Archipelagic Southeast Asia

Stacey, N., Steenbergen, D. J., Clifton, J. & Acciaioli, G. L. 2018 Social wellbeing and the values of small-scale fisheries. Johnson, D. S., Acott, T. G., Stacey, N. & Urquhart, J. (eds.). New York: Springer, p. 97-123 (MARE Publication Series; vol. 17)

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)

Southeast Asia
2 Citations
social construction
public policy
food security
1 Citations
border region

Impacts of marine protected areas on livelihoods and food security of the Bajau as an indigenous migratory people in maritime Southeast Asia

Stacey, N., Acciaioli, G., Clifton, J. & Steenbergen, D. 2017 Marine protected areas: Interactions with fishery livelihoods and food security . Westlund, L., Charles, A., Garcia, S. M. & Sanders, J. (eds.). Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, p. 113-126 14 p. (FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Technical Papers; vol. 603)

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)

food security
protected area
natural resource
nomadic people