The three volume book, Corals of the World, produced by Charlie Veron and Mary Stafford-Smith from which this website has developed, took shape during the late 1990s and was published in the year 2000. Soon after the publication of the CD-Rom, Coral ID, in 2002, Lyndon DeVantier and Emre Turak joined the team and this website is a result of the collaboration of this core team. However, many taxonomists, researchers, photographers and others have made invaluable contributions (see Acknowledgements).
Charlie Veron was the first full-time researcher on the Great Barrier Reef and the first scientist employed by the Australian Institute of Marine Science, Townsville, Australia where he became Chief Scientist. Charlie has over 100 publications on corals and has published widely on other subjects including evolution, mass extinctions and climate change. His work has covered almost all major coral reef regions of the world. He is best-known for the five volume monograph Scleractinia of Eastern Australia (AIMS, 1976-1984), Corals in Space and Time (Cornell, 1995), the three volume Corals of the World (AIMS, 2000), Coral ID CD-ROM (2002) and A Reef in Time: The Great Barrier Reef from Beginning to End (Harvard, 2008). Charlie has three higher degrees in different fields and has received many awards.
Mary Stafford-Smith has had widespread reef experience across the globe including the Caribbean, Middle East, East Africa, Australia, Indonesia, Philippines and Hawaii. She has combined her coral biology and research background with design, communication and computing expertise to create the three volume Corals of the World and the CD_ROM Coral ID (2002) of which she is also co-author. She has designed and coordinated the development of this website with the ultimate goal of providing a foundation tool for long-term effective management of corals and coral reefs into the future. She has a PhD (1990) in coral biology.
Emre Turak is a highly experienced field worker on corals, with specialist skills in underwater identification, taxonomy and photography. For over thirty years he has worked continually in the field encompassing the Red Sea, western Indian Ocean, Thailand, Australia, all countries of the Coral Triangle and many areas of the western and central Pacific. He has an extensive publication record and has authored or co-authored several volumes on Coral Triangle corals with Lyndon and Charlie. He is co-author of Field Guide to reef-building corals of Brunei Darussalam. Emre has extensive computer expertise applicable to coral biogeography including the present website.
Lyndon DeVantier has widespread and comprehensive field experience with the corals of the Red Sea, Arabian Sea and Socotra, Vietnam and all countries of the Coral Triangle, Australia, Micronesia, and Polynesia. Much of his work has focused on ecological assessment, taxonomy and fieldwork supporting conservation and marine park management. He has an extensive publication record which includes co-authoring Socotra: a natural history of the islands and their people and Field Guide to reef-building corals of Brunei Darussalam and has authored or co-authored several volumes on Coral Triangle corals with Emre and Charlie. He has a PhD (1994) in coral biology.