18 December 2019
By Dr Vikki Cheung, Plymouth Marine Laboratory

During the early stages of the GCRF Blue Communities programme, the training needs of the programme’s participants was solicited and among these needs, the Early Career Researchers (ECRs) highlighted their wish to receive training on how to prepare research grant proposals. As a consequence, over the summer of 2019 an inaugural call for proposals for pilot research projects was announced and the pilot project programme was created in large by the ECRs. During the 2nd Annual Meeting, this included opportunities for the ECRs to call upon the mentorship from more experienced researchers.

Blue Communities Early Career Researchers attending a workshop session on how to develop a research project, hosted by the University of Plymouth

The objectives of the pilot projects were for the ECRs to learn from the experience of developing research ideas, work collaboratively with other researchers on these proposals, consider how these projects might add value to the core activities of Blue Communities, and give ECRs an opportunity to prepare budgets and deliberate how the project would be managed and delivered.

Five proposals were submitted and these were reviewed by a panel comprising some members of the Advisory Group and the Executive Group, as well as Joel Sumeldan (Co-Chair of the Blue Communities ECRN) to gain additional experience of how reviews are conducted. To maximise the learning process, anonymised feedback from the review panel was returned to the proponents, with a request to make revisions to the proposal that would take into account the review panellists’ comments. Two proposals were withdrawn due to time constraints, however, the Blue Communities Programme Office is pleased to announce that the following proposals will be funded:

Proposal Title Principal Investigators Co-Investigators
Exploring the educational potential of comic books to communicate delicate fish bombing issues to coastal communities in Sabah, Malaysia Voon-Ching Lim (University of Malaya) & Isabel Richter (University of Plymouth) N/A
Does local wisdom keeps us safe? Perceptions of seafood foraging risks and benefits in the Philippines Jacqui Eales (University of Exeter) & Edgar Jose (Western Phlippines University) Lea Janine Gajardo (Western Philippines University) & Stefanie Broszeit (Plymouth Marine Laboratory)
Incorporating local knowledge and perception in the assessment of coastal ecosystem services Radisti Praptiwi (CSERM-Universitas Nasional) Prawesti Wulandari (CSERM-Universitas Nasional), Carya Maharja (CSERM-Universitas Nasional), Wan Nur Syazana (University of Malaya) & Voon-Ching Lim (University of Malaya)




The Blue Communities Programme Office look forward to seeing the outcomes and outputs from these pilot projects and will be making a call for a new round of pilot project proposals in 2020.
For more news on the ECRN then please click here.

ECRN website: https://bluecomecrn.wixsite.com/home

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