SMEA Research and Outreach Activities

As a leader in research, education and outreach related to human use of the oceans, the University of Washington’s School of Marine and Environmental Affairs (SMEA) conducts studies in locales that range from the Pacific Northwest to international sites along the Pacific Rim, in Southeast Asia and in Africa.

Students have diverse opportunities to collaborate with faculty on research and outreach projects. These projects often span several years, incorporate multiple disciplines, and entail collaboration with other University of Washington faculty as well as regional, national, and international research teams. The considerable resources available at this leading-edge research university make it relatively easy for us to work with experts across campus and around the world in a dynamic, stimulating research environment.

Examples of research conducted in recent years include the following:

  • Interdisciplinary Regional Assessments and Environmental Quality - For example, evaluating approaches to managing ocean resources on a regional basis and to restoring salmon habitat in a Washington watershed.
  • Coastal and Ocean Management - Examples include investigating the effects of a bridge replacement on eelgrass beds and exploring how to sustain systems for managing coastal resources.
  • Living Resources managment—Investigations range from modeling harvesting strategies for groundfish to examining the role of the National Environmental Policy Act in NOAA Fisheries’ management of North Pacific resources.
  • Education—For instance, investigating how coastal communities respond and adapt to changing climate and marine environmental conditions.
  • Ecological and Scientific Studies—For example, extending the utility of models for predicting oil-spill impacts, assessing the status of coastal waters in Pacific Northwest national parks, and estimating the effects of warming climate on nearshore ecosystems.

The research agenda for the School represents a continuing commitment to study and resolve policy and management issues related to the marine environment, and to explore the human dimensions of ocean resource use.

For more information about our faculty's research, please see the SMEA faculty page here and click on each faculty member's name.