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AFSC Seminar Series No. 16

Scheduled Seminars

"Lies, Damn Lies, and Models: Are Our Ecosystem Projections Useful to Stakeholders?"

Presenter: Kerim Aydin, AFSC
When: Tuesday, February 13, 2007, 11:00am
Where: Traynor Seminar Rm (2076), Bldg. 4,  AFSC, Sand Point Campus, Seattle, Washington

  • This seminar will be transmitted live to the Auke Bay Laboratory (main conference room).
  • When arriving from off the WRC campus, leave extra time to check in with security at the gate and at the entrance to building 4.


The Alaska Fisheries Science Center has been a leader in developing quantitative “ecosystem models” of marine food webs since the late 1970s, with the goal of using these models to inform fisheries management.  Twenty-five years on, what kind of advice can we expect from these models?  Do they provide reasonable answers and a basis for sound judgment for ecosystem approaches to management, or do they give us the illusion of understanding trophic manipulations and ecosystem cause-and-effect, over which our control is imperfect at best?  In this talk, I review and discuss current models, their biological insights, their limits, their potential for abuse (especially focusing on results presented during the ongoing controversy surrounding Steller sea lions), and finally their current potential for informing stakeholders and management under best scientific practices, in spite of, or in some cases because of, their inherent uncertainty

Presenter's Bio:

Kerim received his B.S. in biology from Harvey Mudd College in 1992, and received his Ph.D. from the University of Washington School of Aquatic and Fisheries Sciences in 2000, with his dissertation focusing on the ocean food habits and bioenergetics of Pacific salmon.  He has been the Program Leader of REFM’s Resource Ecology and Ecosystem Modeling Program since 2005.


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