Research funding to support new faculty in California

Katherine Leitzell

California Sea Grant is pleased to announce seven new research projects, a total of  $346,000, supporting early-career faculty members at universities throughout the state. The one-year projects focus on two key areas of California Sea Grant’s strategic plan: sustainable fisheries & aquaculture, and coastal resilience.

California Sea Grant has a long-established funding program for new faculty, with calls normally released every other year. Like all of the program’s competitive research funding, the grant proposals are vetted by a technical review panel for scientific merit, and representatives from state agencies who advise Sea Grant on research that is needed to inform resource management and policy decisions. 

California Sea Grant Director Shauna Oh says, “By setting aside funding specifically for new researchers, we are investing in early career scientists, helping them launch their research portfolios, bring on graduate students, and conduct preliminary research that can lay the groundwork for larger research projects.” 

This year, a new partnership with the CSU Council on Ocean Affairs, Science & Technology (COAST) provided non-federal match to new CSU faculty members whose research focuses on supporting the state of California’s highest priority marine, coastal and coastal watershed related needs for scientific information. COAST’s funding, which is solely dedicated to supporting the state of California scientific information needs, will be leveraged by California Sea Grant’s funding, allowing even more management-relevant research to be conducted. 

Funded projects

Strengthening sustainability in an acidified ocean: does the co-culture of seaweeds and shellfish improve shell integrity in farmed red abalone?
PI: Maya deVries (San Jose State University)

Quantifying volatile bromocarbon emissions from seaweed aquaculture in California
PI: Maxime Grand (Moss Landing Marine Laboratories  - San Jose State University)

Using energetics and metabolism to enhance Olympia oyster aquaculture and outplanting success*
PI: Amanda Kahn (Moss Landing Marine Laboratories - San Jose State University)

Study of the biology of night smelt (Spirinchus starksi) in Humboldt and Del Norte counties
PI: Jose Marin Jarrin (Humboldt State University)

Frameworks for managing the known vulnerability from sea-level rise to bluff erosion and exposure of Humboldt Bay nuclear power plant’s spent nuclear fuel storage site
PI: Jennifer Marlow (Humboldt State University)

Season timing, benefits of diversified fishing portfolios, and the ability of fishers to withstand sudden revenue declines
PI: Kiva Oken (University of California, Davis)

Anticipating the effects of future climates and river flow regimes on Pacific Herring recruitment in the San Francisco Bay
PI: Albert Ruhi Vidal (University of California, Berkeley)


*this project will start in 2022