The Torres Strait Scientific Advisory Committee (TSSAC) is the committee that takes a leading role in determining research priorities and assessing proposals for Torres Strait Fisheries related research each year.  The TSSAC meets 3-4 times a year and facilitates an annual funding round, and administration of Torres Strait fisheries related research projects. Research priorities are identified in the five year strategic research plan, which is in turn used by researchers to develop five year fishery research plans. These documents are listed below.

Research reports

Historic research reports

The PZJA are currently in the process of uploading research reports from research funded by the Torres Strait Scientific Advisory Committee.  A number of these publications are already available on the publications page of the website.  You can also view Torres Strait research and data via the CSIRO marine and atmospheric research data centre.

Research documents

In 2018, the new procedural framework for undertaking research in the Torres Strait was introduced. The framework outlines a cleared stepped process for researchers to follow at the different stages of research for Torres Strait fisheries research projects, from the pre-proposal phase through to implementation and post project. This framework should be used in conjunction with the Torres Strait research application, and other relevant Torres Strait research documents such as the annual research statement and five year strategic research plan. It outlines the consultation that should occur with Torres Strait communities for different kinds of Torres Strait research and how to go about this.


2021-22 call for research proposals

The Torres Strait Scientific Advisory Committee (TSSAC) is making its annual public call for applications to address research priorities identified for potential funding in 2021-22.

The TSSAC is a Protected Zone Joint Authority advisory body. The TSSAC provides guidance on fisheries related research priorities and assesses proposals for Torres Strait Fisheries research each year. Research priorities have been identified by individual fishery Resource Assessment Groups (RAGs) and Working Groups (WG).

Research funding proposals are assessed in two stages by the TSSAC, through pre-proposals, then successful applicants will be asked to submit full proposals. As limited funding is available, applicants are encouraged to apply for projects relating directly to the scopes provided as a priority. 

To ensure that the proposal is developed in alignment with the TSSAC scopes, applicants are encouraged to discuss their applications with the relevant AFMA contact listed on the scope you are addressing prior to drafting/ submitting a proposal.

If you want to submit a pre-proposal that addresses the research priorities identified within the Annual Research Statement, but not a priority scope in this call, you are welcome to do so. However given your project may not be considered a high priority, it is less likely to be selected for funding. We encourage you to contact the TSSAC secretariat before developing any proposal that does not address a priority scope. Further, although scopes are being invite for these four projects, funding cannot be guaranteed until the pre-proposals are assessed by the TSSAC, including their budgets.

The TSSAC Executive Officer (Lisa Cocking) can be contacted on 02 6225 5451 or by emailing torresstraitresearch [at] ().

Research pre-proposals must be submitted to the TSSAC Executive Officer by Tuesday 9 February 2021. 

Applicants will be advised by April 2021 whether a full proposal should be submitted, following TSSAC, RAG and Working Group consideration of pre-proposals. If you are asked for a full proposal, the process for Torres Strait research also includes a requirement for pre-consultation on the proposed project with Torres Strait communities. Please refer to the new procedural framework for undertaking research in the Torres Strait for details about the new process. 

Key information for applicants when completing and submitting proposals

When completing and submitting proposals, applicants must:

  • use the project scopes outlined below as a guide when developing their pre-proposals to ensure the identified need for the project is met.
  • read the cover letter for researchers before completing an application
  • use the new TSSAC application form and refer to the procedural framework for undertaking research in the Torres Strait to prepare their proposals
  • include in their proposals:
    • the projected costs, including breakdowns in the specified categories (salaries, travel, operating and capital) and expected funding source, as well as alternatives; and
    • the proposed contractor’s full legal identity/description, including each corporation’s full description and Australian Company Number or the full names of all partners/joint ventures. A trading name and/or Australian Business Number should also be notified, but only if registered to the parties described.
  • email their completed pre-proposal to torresstraitresearch [at] () by 9 February 2021.  
  • A list of research project scopes (in no particular order) is below. Please visit the PZJA website for a link to each individual scope.









Historic Research reports

The CSIRO Marine Research Repository

List of AFMA funded Torres Strait research undertaken between 1980 and 2003 is available on the CSIRO marine science publication and metadata collection page

Learn more about the CSIRO marine science publication and metadata collection on the About page.