What we do

We study community and ecosystem resilience and recovery processes in coastal oceans and estuaries. We aim to provide the science to support real solutions for people and nature. We are committed to inclusion, equity, and honoring the value of human diversity in science and its application.

Our studies uncover key processes and interactions that maintain biodiversity and the function of coastal marine ecosystems in the face of multiple stressors. These include increasing climate variability, extreme events, reductions in important species like predators and habitat-formers, and species invasions. Our focus on extreme event ecology includes effects of major storms, heat waves, low-oxygen events, harmful algal blooms, and diseases.

We use field and lab experiments, environmental and biodiversity monitoring, data synthesis and theory to investigate these processes in a variety of marine ecosystems, urban and remote, intertidal and subtidal, temperate and tropical.

We also help build the science needed to support sustainable invertebrate fisheries. We’re especially interested in helping small-scale and traditional fisheries weather the increasing uncertainty of global change.

Ecosystem-based management towards an equitable, sustainable future for people and nature

How can we best manage for resilience in the coastal ecosystems we depend on?

This is a critical question, since billions of people rely on these ecosystems for their food, livelihoods, and protection from storms and rising seas. Science must be part, but not all, of the answer. We believe that working from common ground and shared goals, respecting diverse perspectives, and bringing together different types of knowledge leads to more effective and practical solutions. We’re excited to work with community groups, fishers, agencies, scientists in other fields, and businesses to collaborate towards ecosystem-based management of natural resources.

Contact me: jurgensL [at] tamug [dot] edu

Find out more on the Research page.

Please see the Opportunities page for information about
graduate student positions in our lab.