Rebecca Gruby (Principal Investigator)
Rebecca Gruby is an Assistant Professor in the Human Dimensions of Natural Resources Department at Colorado State University. She is the principal investigator for the human dimensions of large marine protected areas project, and is leading associated case studies of the Marianas Trench Marine National Monument and Palau’s National Marine Sanctuary. Over the last ten years Dr. Gruby has engaged multidisciplinary perspectives across the social sciences to understand and inform marine conservation and governance in diverse settings. Her recent work has focused in particular on the political and institutional dimensions of marine protected areas, small-scale fisheries, and marine ecosystem-based management in Oceania, and associated environmental governance processes at the global level (e.g., Convention on Biological Diversity).
Dr. Gruby teaches courses at Colorado State University in environmental governance and environmental conflict management. She earned her Ph.D. from Duke University and her B.S. from the University of Florida, and worked as a research associate for the Environmental Law Institute in between. She lives in Fort Collins, Colorado.
Lisa M. Campbell (Co-Principal Investigator)
Lisa M. Campbell is the Rachel Carson Professor of Marine Affairs and Policy in the Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University. As a Co-PI on the human dimensions of large marine protected areas project she is coordinating research efforts in Bermuda and Easter Island, Chile, where large marine protected areas have been proposed. Dr. Campbell studies oceans governance at a variety of scales (international, national, local) in relation to diverse issues (protected species, fisheries, MPAs, tourism, etc.) and is particularly interested how science and non-state actors inform governance processes and outcomes. She has participated in and led a number of multidisciplinary research projects and experiments with methodological innovations to better understand processes of environmental governance. She earned her PhD in Geography from Cambridge University (UK), her MA in Environmental Studies from the University of Toronto, and he BA&Sc from McMaster University. She lives in Beaufort, NC, where oceans and their governance can be experienced first hand.
Noella J. Gray (Co-Principal Investigator)
Noella Gray is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Guelph, Canada. As a Co-PI on the human dimensions of large marine protected areas project she is coordinating research efforts in Kiribati, home to the Phoenix Islands Protected Area. Dr. Gray studies marine conservation governance and politics, focusing on both international and local policy making processes. She has been particularly interested in how science and other forms of knowledge are incorporated into the policy process and in the role of non-government organizations (NGOs) in neoliberal forms of conservation (especially related to marine protected areas and volunteer tourism). She has a PhD in Environment from Duke University, a MA in Geography from the University of Western Ontario, and a BSc from McGill University.
Leslie Acton (PhD Student)
Leslie Acton is a PhD candidate in the Marine Science and Conservation program at Duke University, studying under Drs. Lisa Campbell and Xavier Basurto. As a research assistant for the human dimensions of large marine protected areas project, she investigates negotiations over a proposed marine reserve in Bermuda. Leslie is broadly interested in global oceans governance issues, and draws on political ecology and common-pool resource theory to examine how political and social processes related to oceans governance play out across space and scale. Her dissertation research explores how actors employ territorial practices to negotiate relations and leverage particular outcomes for the governance of Bermuda’s exclusive economic zone and the Sargasso Sea. She holds a BS in Biology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Master of Environmental Management degree from Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment. Leslie enjoys working at the Duke University Marine Lab in Beaufort, NC, where she is able to engage with interdisciplinary scholars who explore marine systems from both social and natural scientific perspectives.
Sarah Bess Jones (PhD Student)
Sarah Bess Jones is a PhD student in Marine Science and Conservation at the Duke University Marine Laboratory under Dr. Lisa Campbell. Broadly, she is interested in indigenous rights and identity in the context of marine conservation. She draws upon anthropology, critical geography, and political ecology to explore the intersections of identity, conservation, and governance processes in marine management and how these intersections change across scales (global, national, local). She received her BA in Anthropology from the University of Georgia, where she studied environmental anthropology with a focus in the South Pacific. Sarah Bess is the research assistant in Rapa Nui (Easter Island, Chile). She currently lives in Beaufort, NC, where she enjoys exploring the beautiful North Carolina coast.
Lillian Mitchell (Masters student)
Lillian Mitchell is a Master’s student of Geography at the University of Guelph, working with Dr. Noella Gray. As a research assistant for this project, Lillian is focused on the Phoenix Islands Protected Area in Kiribati. Lillian is broadly interested in the role of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in marine conservation and how different forms of knowledge shape perspectives on conservation goals, outcomes, and perspectives of success. Lillian graduated with a BA First Class Honours in Environmental Studies from Mount Allison University, New Brunswick, Canada. She lives in Guelph Ontario, Canada.
Evan J. Artis (Masters Student)
Evan J. Artis is a Master’s Student in the Department of Geography at the University of Guelph, working with Dr. Noella Gray. As a research assistant for this project, Evan is focused on the Phoenix Islands Protected Area in Kiribati. He is particularly interested in how marine conservation and large MPA governance is shaped and changed by discursive narratives of nature. Evan completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Guelph in Environmental Governance and Philosophy. Evan currently lives in Toronto, Ontario. He dreams of one day living near the ocean.
Katie Wilson (Masters Student)
Katie Wilson is a Master of Science Student in the Human Dimensions of Natural Resources at Colorado State University, working with Dr. Rebecca Gruby. Her thesis will focus on the Marianas Trench Marine National Monument. Katie earned her B.A. in Anthropology from Idaho State University, where she gained experience as an undergraduate research assistant studying the impacts of proposed oil and gas development in Bristol Bay, Alaska. She has since worked in international and environmental education, leading students in conservation and restoration projects throughout the US. She lives in Fort Collins, Colorado.
Luke Fairbanks (Postdoctoral Fellow)
Luke Fairbanks is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Human Dimensions of Natural Resources Department at Colorado State University. For this project, his case focus is the Palau National Marine Sanctuary. Dr. Fairbanks’ research explores ocean and coastal governance issues at a variety of scales. He is particularly interested in how marine science and policy are created and what that means for ocean and coastal communities and environments. His work has examined global oceans conservation, U.S. marine spatial planning, and U.S. marine aquaculture policy. Dr. Fairbanks has an AB from Bowdoin College and earned his PhD in Marine Science and Conservation from Duke University. He lives in Beaufort, NC, and when he’s not thinking about the ocean, he’s happy to talk Boston sports.