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Robert Blasiak is a postdoctoral researcher at the Stockholm Resilience Centre, where he focuses on aspects of sustainable management of ocean resources. His primary interest has been on the evolution of cooperation and conflict in the management of straddling, shared and highly migratory fish stocks. He has also focused on the international negotiations regarding biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ), with research on imbalances among the negotiating parties and the contribution of NGOs to the process. A new research focus is on tracking the impact of private sector and civil society initiatives to promote sustainable seafood and ocean management.
Before joining the SRC, Robert was a research fellow in the Laboratory of Global Fisheries Science at the University of Tokyo (Japan) and a communications officer at United Nations University, where he worked with the Satoyama Initiative. He also has previous experience working with the United Nations Development Programme (Cambodia) on administrative decentralization, and at the Arnold Bergstraesser Institute (Germany), where he contributed to a project tracking how the political views of returning Filipino guest workers have been influenced by time spent in host countries.
Robert is a senior research fellow with the Nippon Foundation – University of British Columbia Nereus Program on predicting future oceans. He is also a visiting researcher with the University of Tokyo Laboratory of Global Fisheries Science, and was previously a visiting research fellow of the United Nations University (2016-2017). He is a member of the editorial board of the ICES Journal of Marine Science, and of PICES Working Group 36 on developing Common Ecosystem Reference Points (CERP) across PICES member countries. He completed degrees at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst (BA), Lund University (MSc) and the University of Tokyo (PhD).
Robert is a German-English translator, and is currently translating the memoirs of Dr. Franz Doflein, one of the first marine ecologists to travel to East Asia (in 1905) and conduct research on the deep sea fauna and flora off the eastern coast of Japan.
Awards and achievements:
Research news | 2018-06-20
New book chapter looks into the economic, cultural and ecological reasons why some people leave the fisheries and aquaculture sector, and what could be done to reverse the trend
Research news | 2018-06-06
Who owns ocean biodiversity? New study reveals how a single company has registered half of all existing patents associated with genes from marine species
Research news | 2018-05-28
While studies on fisheries conflicts are abundant, confusion remains about what actually constitutes a conflict. A new review paper identifies four key areas of research that still need to be addressed
Research news | 2018-01-16
Official aid for oceans and fisheries in developing world drops by 30%
2018 - Book chapter
This publication is part of a publication which compiles 11 selected case studies provided by authors belonging to IPSI member organizations and covers experiences from countries in Asia, Europe, Africa and North America, with various socio-political and ecosystem contexts. Authors were asked to identify challenges and opportunities in sustaining livelihoods, social and ecological changes that have occurred and approaches bein...
2018 - Journal / article
Who owns ocean biodiversity? This is an increasingly relevant question, given the legal uncertainties associated with the use of genetic resources from areas beyond national jurisdiction, which cover half of the Earth’s surface. We accessed 38 million records of genetic sequences associated with patents and created a database of 12,998 sequences extracted from 862 marine species. We identified >1600 sequences from 91 species a...
2018 - Journal / article
Conflict over marine fishery resources is a growing security concern. Experts expect that global changes in our climate, food systems and oceans may spark or exacerbate resource conflicts. An initial scan of 803 relevant papers and subsequent intensive review of 31 fisheries conflict studies, focused on subnational and international conflicts, suggests that four substantial scientific gaps need addressing to improve our unders...
2017 - Journal / article
In 2004, the UN General Assembly resolved to establish a working group to consider issues pertaining to the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ). The group met nine times between 2006 and 2015 before concluding its mandate by recommending the development of an international legally binding instrument on BBNJ under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Se...