The Isles of Scilly are host to a unique and biologically diverse marine environment that supports wildlife, a small-scale fishery and a significant recreation and tourism economy.
The aim of the project is to develop the underpinning research to ensure that the Isles of Scilly has healthy seas which support the wide range of ecosystem service benefits alongside a sustainable and viable fishing industry.
Though combining effort across the ecological and social-economic sciences the team will develop decision support tools for the IFCA. These tools will characterise the marine environment; identify how the fisheries and other parts of the economy (eg recreation and tourism) are linked to the ‘condition’ of these habitats; document the (present and future) threats to key functional habitats; predict the likelihood of change and; demonstrate the potential scale of impact on ecology, economy and society.
This project creates the opportunity for the IFCA to trial a new approach to management, allowing decisions to be based on a wider understanding of benefits and impacts and improving co-ordination between authorities and organisations with roles and responsibilities in managing the marine environment.
The SCILL-E project benefits from collaboration with Dr Emma Sheehan (https://sheehanresearchgroup.com/) at the University of Plymouth who leads the ecological monitoring team as part of this EMFF bid.
Martin is a Marine Ecologist interested in the links between marine biodiversity, ecosystem services and human activity. Within SWEEP, he coordinates the University of Plymouth input, as well as being actively involved in projects associated with Marine Ecosystem Services, particularly Marine Protected Areas.
Siân is a Senior Research Fellow based at the University of Plymouth’s Marine Institute who brings over 14 years of experience in marine conservation, marine management and policy to the SWEEP team. Siân has a strong track record in utilising social science research methods to inform ecosystem-based management and the implementation of Natural Capital approaches. Siân has worked in an advisory capacity for UK Government, the European Commission and the Secretariat for the Convention on Biological Diversity.