The proposed project will offer training for early-stage researchers in marine biological, physical and economic sciences, within the general theme of an ecosystem-based approach to sustainable exploitation and management of living marine resources. The 1992 Convention on Biological Biodiversity provides the key international framework, defining the ecosystem approach as a strategy for the integrated management of land, water and living resources that promotes conservation and sustainable use, where the “ecosystem” refers to the structure, process, functions and interactions among organisms, humans and their environment.
The research training offered will draw on an exceptionally wide pool of expertise, including marine biologists, ecologists, fisheries scientists, immunologists, geneticists, statisticians, physicists and economists. Research opportunities will include topics in deep-ocean research, GIS/remote sensing, molecular genetics, trophic ecology of top predators and interactions with fisheries, fish behaviour and physiology, fish stock assessment, fishery management, oceanography and environmental effects on fisheries, coastal zone management and fisheries economics. Trainees will have access to world-class facilities including research vessels, ROVs, aquaculture facilities and fully-equipped laboratories. The geographical focus extends from Europe to the Southern Ocean and SW Atlantic.
Trainees will be based at one or more of three multi-partner research centres located in Scotland (UK), Greece and Spain. Each centre comprises a university and one or more research institutes, the latter being centres within multi-location national government research laboratories, facilitating access to resources at other sites. Trainees will register at one of the universities and carry out research based in one or more centre. Generic skills training will be included within training programmes tailored to individual trainee needs. We will offer a combination of long stays (normally up to 36 months), during which trainees can register for a PhD at a host university, and shorter stays (³3 months) for trainees already registered for PhDs elsewhere in Europe. There will be a strong emphasis on integrated training programmes involving stays at two or more centres within the partnership.