About Callum Roberts
Callum Roberts Biography
Callum Roberts is a marine conservation biologist, oceanographer, author and research scholar at the University of York, England.
His work examines the impact of human activity on marine ecosystems, particularly coral reefs. In St. Lucia and Saba in the Caribbean, he has studied the effects of marine reserves closed to all fishing. His studies revealed both the scale of human impacts on the sea, and the means of protecting marine ecosystems from such effects. He is now working to gain a wider acceptance for marine reserves, including in Britain and Europe where he is advising fishermen on how to promote the concept within the industry and to politicians.
Callum has served on a US National Research Council Committee on Marine Protected Areas and has also been a member of the Marine Reserves Working Group, headed up by Jane Lubchenco, Steve Gaines and Steve Palumbi at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis in Santa Barbara. With this group he sought to develop a more robust theoretical underpinning for the design and implementation of marine reserves.
In parallel with work on reserves, Callum has also been active with the Coral Reef Fish Specialist Group of the World Conservation Union (IUCN). With colleagues, he has developed global maps of the biodiversity distribution of reef fishes and other faunal groups. These maps have revealed that marine species are more at risk of global extinction than previously believed. Many have small geographic ranges and life history characteristics that render them vulnerable to extinction. However, the maps also show ways to prioritise conservation investment into areas where those resources could be most effective.
He was awarded a Pew fellowship in marine conservation in 2000 to tackle obstacles to implementing marine reserves, and in 2001 he was awarded a Hardy fellowship in conservation biology at Harvard University. Roberts is also an active supporter of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition.
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