Essex is first English university to join marine alliance

  • Date

    Tue 25 Apr 23

The wealth of marine biology expertise at the University of Essex has meant we have become the first English university to join prestigious marine consortium MASTS.

A primary goal of MASTS (Marine Alliance for Science and Technology for Scotland) is to enhance scientific excellence in marine research through communication, collaboration and co-ordination within the UK marine research community.

Since its inception in 2009, MASTS has grown from its initial 12 partners to welcome other public body organisations and research teams, as well as higher education institutes – with Essex being its 18th partner.

The MASTS research agenda is driven by scientific excellence and contributes to the vision of ‘clean, healthy, safe, biologically diverse marine and coastal environments, managed to meet the long-term needs of people and nature’.

MASTS Executive Director Professor David Paterson said: “The MASTS organisation is absolutely delighted to welcome the University of Essex into the MASTS network. On reviewing Essex’s application, the MASTS Governing Council and the Directorate were impressed with the quality and depth of their submission, and it was clear that as academic participants, they would be a fantastic addition to the MASTS team.”

He added: “MASTS looks forward to the advances in research, science policy, training, and outreach that we can make with our new partners in Essex. We have always felt that the sea has no set boundaries, and neither should our work to support the UK marine community.”

Professor Corinne Whitby and Dr Natalie Hicks, from Essex’s School of Life Sciences, said: “We are extremely pleased to be the first English university to join MASTS. We already work closely with colleagues in Scotland, and our membership in MASTS further strengthens these networks, as well as opening up opportunities for new collaborations and knowledge sharing. We are very much looking forward to working with colleagues and organisations across the MASTS community with the common goal of advancing marine sciences, nationally and globally.”

Research at Essex covers many marine systems, from deep sea corals and offshore sediments to oyster restoration and coastal habitats across tropical, temperate and polar regions. Our research spans from genes, proteins, and cells to species, communities and ecosystems.