Welcome to the Grabowski Lab

The Grabowski Lab at Northeastern University’s Marine Science Center is led by Dr. Jonathan Grabowski. Our research focuses on marine ecology, fisheries, conservation biology, social-ecological coupling, environmental policy, and ecological economics. We conduct research in a variety of estuarine and marine settings, and much of our work focuses on improving the management of economically important species, such as lobsters, cod, herring, monkfish, and striped bass, and coastal habitats including oyster reefs, seagrass beds, salt marshes, kelp forests and cobble bottom. We also examine how the perceptions, knowledge, and social capital of coastal communities influence their decision-making on environment issues such as shoreline hardening, resource harvesting, and climate hazard preparedness.

Dr. Jonathan Grabowski

Dr. Jonathan Grabowski

Principal Investigator

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B.S. Duke University, Biology & Economics

Ph.D. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Ecology

Research Areas: Ecology, Fisheries Biology, Conservation Biology, Restoration Ecology, Ecosystem Management, Ecological Economics

My research interests span issues in ecology, fisheries and conservation biology, social-ecological coupling, environmental policy, and ecological economics. I have used a variety of estuarine (oyster reef, seagrass, salt marsh, mud bottom) and marine (kelp bed, cobble-ledge) systems to examine how resource availability, habitat heterogeneity and predation risk affect population dynamics, community structure, and ecosystem functioning. Much of this work focuses on economically important species such as lobsters, cod, herring, monkfish, and oysters, and consequently is relevant for fisheries and ecosystem management. My lab also focuses on how habitat degradation and restoration influence benthic community structure, population structure, and the transfer of energy to higher trophic levels. In addition, we are interested in how fisheries management initiatives such as the design of closed areas, delineation of stock boundaries, fishing gear modifications, and quota setting impact fish population structure and fisheries productivity, essential fish habitat protection, community structure, and the social capital of stakeholders.

Much of my research involves highly coupled social-ecological systems and integrates social and natural science approaches. For instance, we are examining the ecological consequences of shoreline hardening on ecosystem service provisioning while also investigating how the environmental connectedness of coastal residents influences their decision-making around this issue. We are also examining factors that influence coastal fishing communities’ perceptions of and trust in management to help improve their buy in and identify potential barriers. Finally, we are determining how factors such as urbanization and resource specialization influence the perceptions and values of coastal residents so that we can design more effective environmental policies around issues such as climate hazard preparedness and coastal habitat and resource management.

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Email: j.grabowski@northeastern.edu