Collaborative Science for Estuaries Webinar Series

Join us for monthly webinars featuring project teams supported by the NERRS Science Collaborative. Speakers share their unique approaches to addressing current coastal and estuarine management issues. Learn about new methods to integrate technical experts and users of project outputs into the research process, and how their research results and products might inform your work.

Be sure to check back periodically for session recordings and other relevant products, or sign up (Mailing List | RSS) to receive notifications about new resources and upcoming webinars.

Upcoming Webinars

Portions of wetlands at the Guana Tolomato Matanzas Reserve in Northeastern Florida are predicted to collapse over the next century due to the onslaught of rising sea levels and major storms. To sustain these vulnerable wetland habitats, scientists and land managers must understand the complex relationships between plant and sediment inputs and surface elevation levels. This 2020 catalyst project developed a Coastal Vulnerability Index to assess what role particular habitats are playing in preventing coastal erosion at the GTM Reserve, and these data have demonstrated how management decisions can help increase or maintain wetland surface elevation. In this webinar, the project team will discuss key findings and share important implications the project will have on communal restoration planning addressing sea level rise in the region.

Learn more about the speakers:

Samantha Chapman, Co-director of Center for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Stewardship, Villanova University

Samantha Chapman is the co-director of Center for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Stewardship at Villanova University. She heads the WETFEET project and was the lead investigator for the Experimenting with Elevation project. Samantha, her Villanova team, and collaborators at GTMNERR are taking a multifaceted approach (global change experiments, stakeholder engagement, field observation, remote sensing) to inform the restoration and conservation goals of the GTMNERR. samantha.chapman@villanova.edu

Past Webinars

Wed 1/10/2018 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm EST - Speaker(s): Susi Moser

Download: Webinar Brief

In the face of escalating impacts from climate change, the question of adaptation success is a practical and moral imperative. But, how dowe know whether adaptation to climate variability and change in the coastal zone is actually occurring, and whether the adaptive actions taken are good,useful, and effective? The Successful Adaptation Indicators & Metrics (SAIM) project has worked  collaboratively with five reserves (Wells NERR, Hudson River NERR, Jacques Cousteau NERR, Tijuana River NERR, and Kachemak Bay NERR) and their stakeholders over the past 4 years to help answer these questions. Specifically, the project has uncovered insights regarding: (1) what climate change adaptation success means in different locations, (2) what relevant actions and processes are needed to move toward aspired goals, and (3) the challenges involved in setting up a manageable approach to track progress toward a common vision. The Science Collaborative team - together with the reserve partners - is now at the point of synthesizing lessons learned and finding ways to share them in the most useful way with the NERR System as a whole. Join the webinar to learn more about the project, some lessons learned, and help us determine what would be most useful deliverables from the project for you.

Dr. Susi Moser is principal at Susi Moser Research and Consulting, Inc. She is a member of the NERRS Science Collaborative team, working with reserves on climate change adaptation.

See: Project Page

Wed 12/20/2017 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm EST - Speaker(s): Dani Boudreau and Syverine Bentz

Download: Webinar presentation slides

Project team members Dani Boudreau (Tijuana River NERR) and Syverine Bentz (Kachemak Bay NERR) discussed how climate scenario planning overcame multiple barriers to climate adaptation planning in Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula. Multiple barriers hinder effective adaptation planning in Southcentral Alaska, including the uncertainty around future climate trajectories and limited capacity for interagency collaboration. To address these issues, the Tijuana River NERR (Imperial Beach, CA) partnered with their sister reserve in Kachemak Bay (Homer, AK) to enhance the regional adaptation capacity of Alaska’s Southcentral coastal communities. The webinar focused on climate scenario planning in both the Kachemak Bay and the Tijuana River Reserves, and how the project resulted in multiple unexpected outcomes for each.

Dani Boudreau is Coastal Management Specialist at Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve (Imperial Beach, California).

Syverine Bentz is Coastal Training program Coordinator at Kachemak Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (Homer, Alaska).

See: Project Page

Thu 11/30/2017 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm EST - Speaker(s): Julia Wondolleck

Download: Webinar Brief

Collaboration scholar, Dr. Julia Wondolleck, Professor of Environment and Sustainability at University of Michigan, outlined what she has learned from examining projects supported by the National Estuarine Research Reserve System’s (NERRS) Science Collaborative. NERRS research teams are committed to consequential collaboration with end users and to conveying what they have learned to others. They are exceptional at leveraging resources. In this webinar she discussed:

  • The ways in which end user and researcher interaction throughout the duration of a NERRS project incorporates local knowledge and networks to bring new ideas and opportunities to interactive science teams;
  • The impact of NERRS Science Collaborative project teams in improving understanding and community relationships likely to endure beyond the life of each project; and
  • The unique characteristics of collaborative science that set it apart from more traditional approaches to conducting research.

See Full Assessment Report:
NERRS Science Collaborative Projects: An Assessment of Characteristics, Grantee Reflections & Lessons Learned, Julia M. Wondolleck, Anna Bengtson, and Dietrich Bouma, University of Michigan (U-M), School for Environment and Sustainability and the U-M Water Center, part of the Graham Sustainability Institute, April 2017

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