Coral reefs: running the gauntlet of climate change

Learn about new technologies used to conserve coral reefs.

Coral reefs are the most biodiverse marine ecosystems and more than 500 million people world-wide are estimated to be directly reliant on coral reefs for their livelihoods, food security and coastal protection. However, coral reefs are under severe threat from a range of human stressors, and climate change-induced sea surface-temperature increases are perhaps the most imminent and worrying. There have been three pan-tropical mass-bleaching events recorded in the past three decades, the most recent in 2015–2016, caused by global warming rising close to 1°C above pre-industrial levels. Reducing carbon emissions and increasing reef-protection measures are essential to maintain the functioning of these ecosystems. Alongside this, emergent technologies that assist corals to survive in these inhospitable conditions are providing some optimism for the future. This meeting will investigate the range of technologies being developed to help coral reefs endure unprecedented human impacts as global temperatures increase.


PDF icon Download full agenda and abstract booklet here (240.07 KB)

In an effort to improve the sustainability of these events, we will start to reduce the amount of printed abstract booklets available on the night. Please help us if you're able to by downloading the online PDF version before or after the event, and bringing your own notepad for note-taking if possible. There will still be some printed copies available.



  • Dr Jamie Craggs FLS, Horniman Museum & Gardens and Natural History Museum, London: "Can ex situ coral collections support global reef restoration efforts?"
  • Dr James Guest, Newcastle University: "Assisting coral reef survival in the face of climate change"
  • Dr Rosa van der Ven, University of Essex: "Chasing corals: how coral reefs are connected in space and time"
  • Dr Chris Yesson, Institute of Zoology, ZSL: "The genetic value of aquarium collections: identification and biobanking"


Attending this event

  • This Science and Conservation Event is free to attend and booking is not required.
  • Doors open at 5pm for a 6pm start.
  • Seats are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Venue: Huxley Lecture Theatre at the Meeting Rooms of the Zoological Society of London, Regents Park, NW1 4RY. See map
  • Underground: Camden Town Station; Nearest bus: no. 274.
  • A drinks reception for ZSL Fellows and their guests is held from 5pm – 5:50pm.  More information on ZSL Fellowship can be found here.


ZSL Library Events

The ZSL Library will be open before the event and will offer free introductory talks to its special collections from 4.45pm - 5.05pm; no need to book. Please contact or click here for further information, including some specially themed events.


ZSL Wild Science Podcast

We will be creating a fascinating podcast episode featuring some of the speakers from this event, so be sure to keep an ear out for it in the following months! Listen to more of our award winning ZSL Wild Science podcast episodes produced by Dr Monni Bohm and Eleanor Darbey here.



  • Contact Eleanor Darbey:; +44 (0) 207 449 6227.
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