Shark Research and Conservation Program

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Shark Conservation Shark Research and Conservation Program

Shark Research and Conservation Program

Shark Research and Conservation Program
Directed by Dr. Catherine Macdonald, the Predator Ecology Lab and Shark Research & Conservation Program (SRC) at the University of Miami conducts science centered broadly on food-web dynamics and the behavioral ecology, conservation biology and movement ecology of marine predators. Research projects currently underway are primarily focused on the ecology, movement and conservation of sharks. A core component of our work is to foster scientific literacy and environmental ethic in youth and the public by providing exciting hands-on field research experiences in marine conservation biology. Opportunities are especially made available for under-served populations in the sciences. To impact a global, we employ online outreach tools, including webinars, curricula, videos, blogs, and social media. Focusing primarily on the study and conservation of sharks, we employ a full-immersion educational approach that allows students to actively grow as future scientists.


Our work is composed of four overlapping focal areas:

Science – Education – Conservation – Technology

The core tenet is the science, with the others branching out and building upon it.

From a broader educational perspective, the SRC Program address two major needs in the United States and abroad: (1) a lack of engaging science education opportunities that inspire youth to learn STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) skills and adopt conservation attitudes and behaviors, and (2) a lack of knowledge and awareness about marine ecology and conservation, particularly in relation to shark species. To meet these challenges and bring about the desired change, SRC engages in numerous activities including community outreach, marine-based field, lab, and virtual research experiences and online educational activities.

The program enables the University of Miami (UM) to build upon its internationally recognized programs in marine and ecosystem science and foster innovative interdisciplinary approaches to emerging environmental issues. The Rosenstiel School offers one of the largest, most dynamic marine and atmospheric programs in the nation that will offer cutting-edge scientific support for the new program. The Abess Center, led by University of Miami Professor and National Geographic Emerging Explorer Kenny Broad, provide support in the form of innovative initiatives that bridge the gap between hard science and environmental policy.

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Contact Information

Catherine Macdonald
Research Associate Professor,
Director, Shark Research and Conservation Program
Phone: (305) 284-2721