The Marine Institute celebrates the diversity of its people. In the video animations and Q&A profile, our people share their study and career paths, the work they do at the Marine Institute and the important contribution their work delivers.
What is your current role at the Marine Institute and what's involved in your daily work?
My current role is a Principal Investigator in Ecosystems Based Fishery Management. My daily work is a mix of running existing projects funded by the European Commission, Science Foundation Ireland, and Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, and looking for and preparing new proposals for projects. That is mixed with student supervision (currently three PhD students), writing reports and papers, attending International Council for the Exploration of the Seas (ICES) and the European Commission's Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF) working groups and workshops, as well as managing my team.
What did you study and why?
I studied Marine Biology in Liverpool way back in the 1970s, then a PhD in crustacean behavioural physiology at Bangor University in Wales. Through all that I developed skills in coding and ecology that evolved into a couple of postdoc positions. I was recruited into what is now Marine Scotland Science in Aberdeen after doing a project with them on fish movement. Once there I spent 20 years undertaking acoustic data analysis, building and designing RV surveys, fisheries ecosystem research, then into fishing gear for a few years, selectivity and so on, both survey and commercial gears. All this with a strong thread of ecosystem based links. And finally here at the Marine Institute to lead on Ecosystem-Based Fishery Management. All a series of chances and accidents – if an opportunity arises, take it!
What are you interests and passions?
I am a keen amateur historian and fancy doing a history degree when I retire, if I retire! I love books, photography and drumming.
What is the best thing about working in the Marine Institute? What do you enjoy most about your job?
The best thing for me personally, is the freedom to develop ideas and projects that are both valuable for the Marine Institute and fun for me. On a wider perspective the camaraderie and friendliness of the Marine Institute is a boon. I most enjoy working with my team on a diverse portfolio of projects, and with my wider network. Most satisfying is seeing the growth and development of the young and brilliant folk who work for or with me.
What is something you think everyone should know about the ocean?
What you should know about the ocean is how much we don't know about it! A great place to work in really.