Based in the Marine Institute in Galway, Ireland, Jonathan White jointly manages the Demersal Stock Assessment team, which is part of Fisheries Ecosystems Advisory Services. He oversees the demersal fish stock assessments and Nephrops surveys within the institute. Before demersal fisheries, Jonathan worked initially on lake and river ecology, then Atlantic salmon stock assessments, marine habitat mapping, oceanography and data management.
Jonathan is a familiar face at ICES, his involvement began as a member of the Working Group on North Atlantic Salmon (WGNAS) where he developed an understanding of how to translate science into advice. Currently, he chairs the Working Group for the Celtic Seas Ecoregion (WGCSE) and has been involved with many assessment benchmarks, workshops, advice drafting groups, and ICES Advisory Committee (ACOM).
The Fisheries Resources Steering Group (FRSG) is responsible for guiding and supporting expert groups working on advisory-related science topics that contribute to the management of wild-capture fisheries.
We spoke to Jonathan about his new role as the coordinator of the work of expert groups under FRSG.
I really find ICES approach to collaborative science stimulating, open, and welcoming with a strong attitude of inclusion, cooperation, and collaboration. This gives rise to a robust and objective basis for developing the advice. I also find the people in ICES community very open and welcoming.
The science attracted me as well: we deal with, develop, and apply cutting-edge resource assessment tools and work together to find out how we best manage natural marine resources for now and the future.
I look forward to communicating with an engaged, open, and critical-thinking community of marine scientists and advisors and also helping to build and contribute to a robust system that manages fisheries resources sustainably and safeguards the marine environment.
To put it briefly, communication and information exchange to improve ICES science and advice. There are many fisheries resource-related groups in ICES and ensuring information flow and communication among them and with ACOM and the Science Committee (SCICOM) is essential.
I also want to build on the well-established ACOM, SCICOM, and working group interactions by developing useful, easily accessible communication of relevant questions and issues to better answer societal needs. Science and advice not only fit for purpose but at its best.
Jonathan White chairs the Fisheries Resources Steering Group for the next four years.