Dr. Paul Anderson
Talk Title: The Coral Reef Aquarium Fisheries Campaign
Dr. Paul Anderson is a Research Scientist at Mystic Aquarium in Mystic, CT. Dr. Anderson leads the Coral Reef Aquarium Fisheries Campaign, a multi-stakeholder effort to empower sustainable coral reef aquarium fisheries that support healthy coral reefs, livelihoods and food security, for those that trade in these fisheries throughout the global value chain. The Campaign’s approach is three-fold: 1) engage source country governments in effective coral reef aquarium fisheries policy and management; 2) upgrade the value chain—that is, shift the value chain paradigm from a volume-drivel model to a value-driven model; and 3) research and develop aquaculture techniques to empower sustainable aquacultured sources as alternatives to wild-caught fishes.
Like many of us, Dr. Anderson has kept marine aquaria since his youth, and has turned his childhood hobby into his academic and professional career. After his graduation with a BS in Marine Science from Eckerd College in 1997, he began his career working in public aquaria as an Aquarist at Mote Marine Aquarium (Sarasota, FL; 1997-1999) and then the Education Coordinator of The Pier Aquarium (St. Petersburg, FL; 1999-2002). His love for learning brought him back to graduate school, where he honed his interests and knowledgebase in aquaculture, fish behavior, and physiology, graduating with his PhD in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences from the University of Florida (Gainesville, FL; 2009). Since then, he has driven conservation initiatives in public aquaria as the Conservation and Research Coordinator of The Florida Aquarium (2008-2011) and in his current role at Mystic since 2012. Over the course of his career, Dr. Anderson has learned to value the power that engagement with people holds in influencing conservation action, and, toward this end, became a Certified Associate in Project Management in 2018 to bring people together to work toward the common goals of the Campaign.