Servicio de Información Comunitario sobre Investigación y Desarrollo - CORDIS

Final Activity Report Summary - ECOSUMMER (Ecosystem approach to sustainable management of the marine environment and its living resources)

The ECOSUMMER project trained 23 early-stage researchers (14 long-stay, 9 short-stay; 5 male and 18 female) during 46 separate training periods at 8 institutes in 3 European countries (United Kingdom (UK), Spain, Greece), delivering a total of 499 training months. Trainees were recruited from the UK, Germany, Denmark, France, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Mexico and Chile. Trainees carried out individual research projects within the training site theme (Ecosystem approach to sustainable management of the marine environment and its living resources), the majority undertaking projects which they had themselves proposed.

Individual research topics included:
- Bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus (Montagu 1821), trophic ecology, population structure and interactions with fisheries in Galicia (NW Spain)
- Carbon cycling in continental slope sediments: the role of benthic communities
- Population structure of Octopus vulgaris: combination of ageing, morphometric, genetics and GIS methods
- Atmospheric and oceanic teleconnection patterns and their impact on fisheries-environment interactions
- Resolving the importance of Dissolved Organic Nitrogen (DON) and Dissolved Organic Phosphorus (DOP) in marine coastal waters
- Predator-prey interactions and indicators of the impact of fisheries on fish species diversity
- Fished grounds to oil platform refugium: temporal changes in fish assemblages
- Evolutionary genetics of the Mytilus edulis complex in Scotland.

Many of the projects included collaboration with industry, including the fishing, aquaculture and oil industries. Most of the long-stay trainees registered for PhDs. The trainees presented a total of 66 talks and posters at conferences and other meetings. Including participations in work presented by colleagues, this total rises to 112. Trainees have written 21 publications as first author (46 in total) including 13 journal articles as first author (29 in total). A further 20 first-authored papers are either submitted or in preparation (48 in total).

During the 4-year programme, the consortium delivered three annual summer training courses (2006, 2007, 2008) and one short winter course (2008), focused on generic skills training, in particular applied statistics. Taking into account other courses delivered by project partners, the trainees together attended 113 courses totalling 1920 hours.

In the final year of the project, the majority of trainees presented their work at the 'Marine Ecosystems and Sustainability' conference in Aberdeen, UK. Several have submitted papers to the associated special issue of the journal Hydrobiologia.

Two were awarded their PhDs during 2009 (Christian Lønborg and Isidora Katara). A third trainee received her PhD in May 2010 (Evangelia Gontikaki) and a fourth (Katie Longo) has submitted her PhD. The consortium will maintain contacts with the trainees over the coming years, assisting with generating publications, circulating information on employment opportunities and following their careers.

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United Kingdom
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