The University of Western Australia has appointed renowned oceans researcher Professor Carlos Duarte as Director of the Oceans Institute at UWA.
Professor Duarte is currently leading the Malaspina 2010 Expedition, a Spanish circumnavigation expedition that is sailing the world's oceans to examine the impacts of global change on ocean ecosystems and explore their biodiversity.
Professor Duarte is one of the world's foremost oceans researchers. He is currently the head of the Department of Global Change Research at the Mediterranean Institute for Advanced Studies (IMEDEA) in Mallorca, Spain.
His research focuses on understanding the effects of global change in aquatic ecosystems, both marine and freshwater. He has conducted research across Europe, South-East Asia, Cuba, México, USA, Australia, the Amazonia, the Arctic, the Southern Ocean, and the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific oceans.
Professor Alan Robson, Vice-Chancellor of The University of Western Australia said Professor Duarte's academic excellence and renown would help to place the Oceans Institute at UWA at the forefront of global oceans research.
"The state of our oceans is fundamental to human survival and holds many of the key indicators of the impact of climate change. Our Oceans Institute has a wealth of research expertise that will ensure UWA plays a crucial role in measuring and communicating ocean impacts worldwide, but particularly within the Indian Ocean region. The Institute's work also influences the development of marine and maritime policy.
Professor Carlos Duarte commented "I am honoured and delighted to serve as Director for the Oceans Institute. The unique interdisciplinary mix of UWA's Oceans Institute, including expertise spanning from marine sciences and engineering to marine policy, sustainability and governance offers an unique opportunity to take the extra step from excellence in research to delivering ocean-based solutions to overcome humanity's greatest challenges. Underpinned by the commitment, vision and support of UWA's leadership, the Oceans Institute will become a globally-relevant resource tuned to the needs of WA's industry and government but also delivering ocean-based solutions for the benefit of all of humanity".
As well as the Malaspina expedition, Professor Duarte is also involved in several other international research projects.
He is co-leader of a large EU-funded project on Arctic Tipping Points.
He is also working closely with the United Nations (the United Nations Environment Programme and FAO) and the World Bank to develop strategies to increase the sustainable production of marine aquaculture, as well as the restoration and conservation of coastal habitats to mitigate climate change and protect coastlines.
Professor Duarte served as President of the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography between 2007 and 2010. In 2009, was appointed member of the Scientific Council of the European Research Council (ERC), the highest-level scientific committee at the European Level.
He has published more than 400 scientific papers and two books, and is editor-in-chief of Estuaries and Coasts, as well as associate editor for a number of journals.
He has received many honours for his work including the National Science Award of Spain (2007) and the King James I Award for Research on Environmental Protection (2009). In 2009, he also received the Silver Medal Cross of Merit from the Guardia Civil, Spain, for his service to environmental protection.