- Ocean governance
- Marine genetic resources
- Ocean risk and resilience
Robert Blasiak's research focuses on stewardship within the seafood industry and issues surrounding marine genetic resources and biotechnology
Blasiak is a researcher at the Stockholm Resilience Centre, where he focuses on the sustainable management of ocean resources, and ocean stewardship. His recent work has dealt with issues surrounding the conservation and equitable use of marine genetic resources.
Before joining SRC, Robert worked as a researcher in the Laboratory of Global Fisheries Science at the University of Tokyo and a communications officer at the United Nations University. He has previously been a senior research fellow with the Nippon Foundation NEREUS Program, as well as a visiting researcher with the University of Tokyo and the United Nations University.
He has co-led publications about the “ocean genome” and marine genetic resources for the High-Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy, the United Nations Regular Process (World Ocean Assessment), and the Blue Climate Initiative.
Blasiak 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.
Blasiak completed his PhD at the University of Tokyo’s Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, supervised by Professor Nobuyuki Yagi. His PhD thesis was titled “Conservation and sustainable use of the oceans: Strategic behavior and unintended consequences (海洋の保全と持続可能な利用：戦略的行動と意図せざる結果)”.
He received a Masters degree from Lund University (Lund University Masters in International Development) applying game theory to aspects of international cooperation in Cambodia, and a Bachelors degree from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.
Blasiak is a member of the Ocean and Climate Platform Scientific Committee, a member of the editorial board of the ICES Journal of Marine Science, a participant in the UN Global Compact Ocean Stewardship Coalition, a member of the Expert Review Committee for the Seafood Stewardship Index, and coordinates the scientific input to the SeaBOS initiative (Seafood Business for Ocean Stewardship).
He has co-led working groups and publications on marine genetic resources for the High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy, the World Ocean Assessment and the Blue Climate Initiative. He is currently leading the FORMAS project on “The marine biotechnology industry and equitable governance of marine genetic resources” and is co-leading the SRC’s Human Ocean research theme.
- Swedish Research Council Formas (2020-01048)
- Ocean Risk and Resilience Action Alliance (ORRAA) through the Government of Canada
- Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation
- David and Lucile Packard Foundation
Margrét Rós Sigurjónsdóttir
Blasiak, R., Wynberg, R., Grorud-Colvert, K., Thambisetty, S., Bandarra, N.M., Canario, A.V., da Silva, J., Duarte, C.M., Jaspars, M., Rogers, A., Sink, K. and Wabnitz, C.C.C. 2020. The ocean genome and future prospects for conservation and equity. Nature Sustainability, 3(8), pp.588-596.
Blasiak, R., Kenchington, E., Arrieta, J.M., Bermúdez-Monsalve, J.R., Calumpong, H., Changwei, S., Chiba, S., Dionisi, H., Garcia-Soto, C., Vieira, H. and Wawrik, B., 2021. Developments in the exploration for and use of marine genetic resources. World Ocean Assessment II. United Nations.
Blasiak, R., Dauriach, A., Jouffray, J. B., Folke, C., Österblom, H., Bebbington, J., ... & Crona, B. (2021). Evolving Perspectives of Stewardship in the Seafood Industry. Frontiers in Marine Science, 8, 676.
Claudet, J., Amon, D.J. and Blasiak, R., 2021. Transformational opportunities for an equitable ocean commons. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 118(42).
Blasiak, R., Jouffray, J.B., Wabnitz, C.C., Sundström, E. and Österblom, H., 2018. Corporate control and global governance of marine genetic resources. Science advances, 4(6), p.eaar5237.
News articles with Blasiak, Robert
Research news | 2023-03-06
Historic high seas treaty a win for planet and people
The new UN treaty on biodiversity in marine areas beyond national jurisdiction is a major step for ocean sustainability, according to centre researchers
Research news | 2023-01-19
Time for an "IPCC for the ocean"
Leading ocean experts propose a new International Panel for Ocean Sustainability (IPOS) to build consensus and inform policy
Research news | 2022-12-16
Lack of understanding of ocean risks can worsen inequities
Ocean-related risks are not well understood in the region which might be hardest hit by them, Sub-Saharan Africa, concludes new review
Research news | 2022-10-31
An ocean of ideas
New study reveals a forgotten element of the blue economy: designs and innovations inspired by marine life and the deep sea
Videos with Blasiak, Robert
Publications by Blasiak, Robert
Scientific mobilization of keystone actors for biosphere stewardship
Journal / article | 2022
The biosphere crisis requires changes to existing business practices. We ask how corporations can become sustainability leaders, when constrained by multiple barriers to collaboration for biosphere stewardship. We describe how scientists motivated, inspired and engaged with ten of the world’s largest seafood companies, in a collaborative process aimed to enable science-based and systemic transformations (2015–2021). CEOs face...
WTO must ban harmful fisheries subsidies
Journal / article | 2021
Sustainably managed wild fisheries support food and nutritional security, livelihoods, and cultures. Harmful fisheries subsidies—government payments that incentivize overcapacity and lead to overfishing—undermine these benefits yet are increasing globally. World Trade Organization (WTO) members have a unique opportunity at their ministerial meeting in November to reach an agreement that eliminates harmful subsidies. We—a group...
Corporations and plastic pollution: Trends in reporting
Journal / article | 2021
Research on pathways to reducing plastic pollution often concludes that greater action is needed by the private sector. Yet the private sector is not a monolithic or homogeneous entity. We compiled a novel library of 2,317 corporate reports from the world's 200 largest companies, by revenue, over a ten-year period (2010–2019) and used text mining tools to identify pronounced regional and sectoral variability in the extent to ...
Oil licences undermine Norway’s ocean leadership
Journal / article | 2021
As two of the 250 scientists who supported 14 heads of state in crafting the agreement for 100% sustainable ocean management by 2025 that was announced in December (see E. Solberg Nature 588, 9; 2020), we are deeply concerned. Just weeks later, Norway — co-leader of the initiative — announced 61 new licences for oil and gas exploration, and it plans to permit sea-bed mining as early as 2023. Such ‘business as usual’ is antithe...