Professor Ian Atkinson is a Tropical Leader and Director of the eResearch Centre at James Cook University. His PhD studies were in chemical physics but nearly 20 years ago moved from experimental science into computational chemistry and high-performance computing.

Over the past decade the rapid expansion of the Internet, mass data storage and computing has impacted every area of research and academic activity. As Director of the JCU eResearch Centre he has the privilege of working with researchers to apply new and ever changing ICT tools and methods to their research and amplifying their impacts.

He has a long-standing interest in eResearch methods, tools, scientific data management and user interfaces for HPC tools. He is also actively involved in researching how new systems and software that connect the physical and virtual worlds, particularly focusing on environmental monitoring with sensor networks.

  • SC1101: Science, Technology and Truth (Level 1; TSV & CNS)
  • Sensor Networks and IoT
  • Big Data Analytics
  • eResearch
  • Precision Agriculture
Socio-Economic Objectives
  • 2016 - JCU Senior Staff 'Dugong Award'
  • 2008 - University of Melbourne Vice-Chancellors Award for Knowledge Transfer with Professor Marimuthu Palaniswami, for Monitoring of the Great Barrier Reef using Distributed Sensor Networks.
  • 2001 - RACI Ollé Prize for best treatise, writing or paper: Self-Assembly in Supramolecular Systems, Book, with Prof. L.F. Lindoy

These are the most recent publications associated with this author. To see a detailed profile of all publications stored at JCU, visit ResearchOnline@JCU. Hover over Altmetrics badges to see social impact.

Journal Articles
Conference Papers

ResearchOnline@JCU stores 91+ research outputs authored by Prof Ian Atkinson from 1988 onwards.

Current Funding

Current and recent Research Funding to JCU is shown by funding source and project.

Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment - National Landcare Program: Smart Farming Partnerships Grant

Improved feral cattle and buffalo herd management for environmental and economic benefits in remote Northern Australia

Indicative Funding
$1,040,450 over 3 years (administered by Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation)
The project aims to develop improved feral cattle and buffalo herd management for environmental, biosecurity and economic development in remote Northern Australia. It includes the following core components: 1) Development of a smart ear tag using GPS and Kineis satellite telemetry (France) - JCU lead agency 2) Testing and development of the ear tag at Fletcherview Research Station (approx. 100 animals) - JCU lead agency 3) Development of management tools for geolocation data - CSIRO lead agency 4) Deployment of tags on 1000 feral Buffalo and Cattle in the NT - CSIRO/NAILSMA 5) Development of on-ground capacity for herd management within indigenous community organisations - JCU/NAILSMA
Ian Atkinson and Justin Perry in collaboration with Nigel Bajema, Scott Mills, Ricky Archer, Sandy Whyte, Dominic Nicholls and Denis Kelly (Research Infrastructure, Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation, North Australian Indigenous Land and Sea Management Alliance, APN Cape York, Mimal Land Management Aboriginal Corporation and Melsonby Balnggarrawarra Rangers)
Bovidae Bubalus bubalas; Bovidae Bos taurus; Animal Tracking; Environmental Management; Indigenous Industry; IoT

Department of Industry - Innovations Connections

Develop a deployable hardware and firmware control system

Indicative Funding
$46,300 over 1 year (administered by FET Pty Ltd)
Develop an integrated Agriculture control systems solution that will increase functional flexibility with more inputs, outputs using low energy, long range communications networks and low energy, longrange sensing devices for large area multi-farm applications.
Ian Atkinson, Russell Warburton, Brett Havenaar and Walter Thomas (Research Infrastructure and FTEC Electrical)
Irrigation control; AgTech; Iot; SCADA

CRC for Developing Northern Australia Scheme - Projects

Applying new technologies to enhance biosecurity and cattle quality.

Indicative Funding
$1,084,500 over 3 years (administered by Branir Pty Ltd & Trustee for Booloomani Unit Trust)
The vast natural environment of Northern Australia feeds the cattle industry; however, biosecurity threats have negatively impacted this. Conventional management of such threats such as weeds are not suited to such broad, harsh landscapes. The project will use an Internet of Things network with low-cost environmental sensors, drone mapping and big data analytics to develop and test data-driven, strategic pest management programs - ultimately improving both cattle industry and natural assets.
Ian Atkinson, Wei Xiang, Ron White, Stephanie Duce, Mohan Jacob and Karen Joyce (Research Infrastructure and College of Science & Engineering)
Biosecurity; Cattle; Drones; Weeds; Technology; Internet Of Things

QLD Department of Science, Information Technology and Innovation - Advance Queensland Innovation Partnerships

Smart Ear Tag for Livestock

Indicative Funding
$1,500,000 over 4 years
CeresTag is investing in the development of a smart ear tag for livestock to enable near real-time geo-location and health monitoring. The developed ear tag will be compliant with the current NLIS identification system and cost only marginally more than existing tags. This technology will revolutionise the industry through enhanced animal welfare, improved land management practices and increased profitability. It will form the starting point of block chain traceability that will underpin the continued success of this important component of the Australian economy and help maintain the premium status of Australian livestock products.
Ian Atkinson, Wei Xiang, Bronson Philippa, Ed Charmley, Greg Bishop-Hurley, Nigel Bajema, Scott Mills, Gordon Foyster and Richard Keaney (Research Infrastructure, College of Science & Engineering, Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation and Taggle Systems)
Animal tracking; Internet Of Things; Microelectronics; Geo-location; Precision Agriculture; Beef Cattle

Advisory Accreditation: I can be on your Advisory Panel as a Primary or Secondary Advisor.

These Higher Degree Research projects are either current or by students who have completed their studies within the past 5 years at JCU. Linked titles show theses available within ResearchOnline@JCU.

  • Measuring and quantifying the benefits of improved Internet connectivity in regional and remote Australia and its effect on adoption of technology (PhD , Secondary Advisor/AM)
  • Rural and remote stroke survivors driving their own recovery using technology (PhD , Secondary Advisor/AM)
  • Technology adoption by Australian farmers: understanding and supporting decision making (PhD , Secondary Advisor/AM)
  • Prognostics and health management in asset life cycle decision making – A data driven approach (PhD , Advisor Mentor)

These are the most recent metadata records associated with this researcher. To see a detailed description of all dataset records, visit Research Data Australia.


The map shows research collaborations by institution from the past 7 years.
Note: Map points are indicative of the countries or states that institutions are associated with.

  • 5+ collaborations
  • 4 collaborations
  • 3 collaborations
  • 2 collaborations
  • 1 collaboration
  • Indicates the Tropics (Torrid Zone)

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  • 17.066A, Faculty of Science & Engineering (Townsville campus)
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