Capacity Building in China Through Collaborative Marine Research

Award Period: 

Thursday, September 1, 2016 to Friday, May 31, 2019

Award Amount: 

$500 000

Agency Name: 

David and Lucille Packard Foundation

Award Number: 


PI First Name: 


PI last name: 



Christopher Costello

MSI Person: 

Area/s of Research: 


The Sustainable Fisheries Group (SFG) at UCSB seeks a partnership with the Packard Foundation on a project grant to engage Chinese researchers in collaborative research aimed at understanding the status and evaluating the management of Chinese marine resources. The planned research collaborations will increase our Chinese partner’s capacity to employ more quantitative methods by exposing them to cutting edge management tools and analytical methods.   The Chinese government is enthusiastic about involving international experts in the process of exploring potential management strategies for their ocean resources, but sensitivities exist, particularly with regard to sharing data.  SFG proposes the following approach to respect our collaborators’ need for privacy while offering meaningful guidance in ocean management.

SFG will design a user-friendly tool to quantitatively assess the impacts of alternative changes in fishery management with an emphasis on flexibility so that it can be applied to many species. This tool will be able to consider the influence of climate change and trophic interactions in the process of evaluating potential management interventions from both ecological and economic perspectives. We will provide training in the use of the tool and the concepts behind it to researchers at multiple institutes and universities in China so they can use it in their own research. Currently, four projects are planned using this tool, and more projects will emerge as SFG continues to build relationships with Chinese scientists and fisheries researchers. 

     The planned projects are aimed at deepening the sophistication of China’s ocean management and increasing the visibility of the potential benefits of management reforms. To further our goal of building capacity in China and raising the profile of the results of our collaborations, we will host up to 4 visiting scholars over the grant period, targeting individuals for their potential to influence future management decisions and to spread technological innovations more broadly within the Chinese academic and management communities. SFG will collaborate with these researchers and others to produce peerreviewed publications in English-speaking journals related to the management of species fished by the Chinese fleets.