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Indicators and informatics for marine ecosystems

I coordinate WHOI’s Ocean Informatics initiative and serve as WHOI's representative to the Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP). I am particularly interested in data access (e.g., accessing heterogeneous and distributed data about the marine environment) and data provenance (i.e., lineage and/or processing involved to produce oceanographic data products).

Current research

A Computational and Analytic Laboratory for Modeling and Predicting Marine Biodiversity and Indicators of Sustainable Ecosystems

I am co-PI on a project funded by the NSF CyberSEES Program, with collaborators Peter Fox (RPI) and David Mark Welch (MBL). The WHOI team is led by Heidi Sosik. This research effort brings together computational and information scientists, oceanographers and microbiologists to develop a Marine Biodiversity Virtual Laboratory (MBVL).

Click for NSF Award 2015-2019

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Previous research

Interdisciplinary informatics in cooperation with USGS for decision support systems and policy

I was co-PI on this project with the USGS Coastal and Marine Geology Program. As science support for decision making and policy development becomes more important (e.g., for regional marine planning), both WHOI and USGS need to improve capabilities for cataloging data, making these data available to stakeholders and as inputs to and constraints for computer models, and relating these data to derived data products. I provided domain expertise for the development of informatics frameworks that included controlled vocabularies and ontologies, data provenance and attribution, traceable workflows, and more, to support the inter-disciplinary application of these data.

ECO-OP: Cyberinfrastructure for marine Integrated Ecosystem Assessments (IEAs)

I was co-PI on this NSF-funded project (NSF Award 2010-2014)

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To develop cyberinfrastructure for IEAs in a tight collaboration between academic and government scientists and software developers, we utilized the Tetherless World Constellation (TWC) Semantic Web Methodology, in which a “use case” defines the interactions between the people, the software, and the desired data products. We ultimately focused on two use cases in a partnership with the Ecosystem Assessment Program at NOAA’s Northeast Fisheries Science Center (NEFSC).


Funding Agencies

Recent informatics research funding from the National Science Foundation


Recent informatics collaborators include:

Peter Fox at Tetherless World Constellation (RPI)