Careers in Marine Science

The growing recognition of the importance of marine science to Australia and the increased funding for marine research is opening up many job opportunities. Many employers are finding that they cannot fill their positions in marine science. Since marine science involves all scientific disciplines, well qualified scientists from almost any area including biologists, chemists, physicists, geoscientists, mathematicians or engineers can find work in marine science. In particular there are major shortages in areas of quantitative marine science and engineering.

Many organisations employ marine scientists. There are the large federal research organisations such as the CSIRO Division of Marine and Atmospheric Research, Geoscience Australia, the Australian Antarctic Division; and the Australian Institute of Marine Science. Federal government departments and agencies that employ marine scientists include: Agriculture; Fisheries and Forestry (Australian Fisheries Management Authority, Bureau of Rural Sciences, Fisheries Research and Development Corporation, Australian Bureau of Agricultural & Resource Economics); Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts; Defence (Defence Science and technology organisation, and the RAN Directorate of oceanography and Meteorology); the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority; and the Bureau of Meteorology.

All Australian state governments employ marine scientists in their museums, research organisations and government departments that have marine and maritime responsibilities such as fisheries, parks and wildlife, and environmental and coastal protection. Coastal based local governments also employ marine scientists. In New South Wales these include the Department of Environment and Climate Change, Fisheries, Sydney Water, and Coastal Protection at the Department of Planning.

Most industries with involvement in the ocean need marine scientists and environmental consultants. This includes the oil and gas industry, particularly in exploration.

Our graduates have been employed in local, state and federal government agencies concerned with coastal and marine investigation and management as well as private industry and environmental/marine consultancies.

The Australian Marine Science Association (AMSA) details the wide range of marine careers available for Australian marine scientists on their website.

See also the Careers page at the Faculty of Science for some useful links and information: Water - Current Undergraduates - The University of Sydney