The Prix d'Excellence recognizes the highest level of achievement in marine sciences and important contributions to ICES vision. Dr. Walters, Emeritus professor at the University of British Columbia, is a specialist in fisheries stock assessments, adaptive management, and ecosystem modeling. He uses mathematical modeling and computer simulation techniques to better understand the dynamics of exploited marine ecosystems and to find more effective methods to manage them.
"Over his career, Dr. Walters has been the most innovative scientist working in marine ecosystems and fisheries management. He is one of the main developers of the ecosystem simulation programme Ecosim, which is used to test ideas about organization of trophic interactions in marine systems, and the implications of these interactions for sustainable harvesting theory," remarked ICES Awards Committee Chair Pierre Petitgas at the awards ceremony during the ASC opening session.
"He has also been a well-known advocate for co-operation between scientists and fishermen and has promoted cooperative arrangements between governments and fishing industries to provide improved information for stock assessment and management via methods such as industry-based surveys," Petitgas continued.
Outstanding Achievement Award recipient Dr. Karp is the Science and Research Director for NOAA Fisheries Northeast Region. The award represents the highest expression of recognition and appreciation for contributions to ICES.
"Bill Karp has been involved with ICES for over 20 years, serving in many roles - from member of various groups and committees, including the Science Committee (SCICOM), to symposia convener. He has long been recognized as one of the scientific leaders at ICES in fisheries science, acoustics, ecosystem surveys, and the collection and interpretation of fishery dependent data. His efforts to promote the utility of fishery dependent data in fisheries management and to engage fishers and other stakeholders in this process is well recognized," Petitgas stated.
"In addition, he has worked through ICES to recognize the importance of advanced technology, and he has mentored many young scientists in the development of technological improvements to the way marine scientists collect the information needed to manage fisheries."
"My career has been shaped by ICES in many ways", said Dr. Karp in his acceptance speech at the ceremony.
"ICES work is also helpful for our work in home institutions. Every time I engage with the ICES community, I have so much to take home", Dr. Karp stated.
Over 500 participants are gathered this week for the week-long ASC in A Coruña to exchange ideas and establish partnerships. For more information, go to the ICES website, or follow the proceedings on Twitter.
Bill Karp (right) receives the ICES Outstanding Achievement Award from Pierre Petitgas, the Chair of Awards Committee. Copyright: Enrique Blanco Ramos