Ocean conservation is a global concern, but researchers say we don’t currently know what the oceans were like before major impacts caused by humans. Using sediments, shells and bones, and a host of cutting-edge analysis techniques, the SEACHANGE project aims to find out.
SEACHANGE is a synergetic alliance bought together to unlock the richness of oceanic history. Funded by European Research Council (ERC) Synergy Grant, this 6-year project will combine interdisciplinary research approaches to quantify the impact of major cultural transitions on marine ecosystem functioning and biodiversity, setting new baselines for understanding ocean environmental change. By understanding how the seas of today are different from the past, we will be able to better manage them for the future.
Aims and Objectives
The project will test the scale and rate of biodiversity loss as a result of fishing and habitat destruction over the last 2,000 years in the North Sea and around Iceland, eastern Australia and the west Antarctic Peninsula, as well as the earlier transition from hunter-gatherer to farming communities in northern Europe around 6,000 years ago. Jointly led by the University of Exeter, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (Germany) and the University of Copenhagen (Denmark) and with the expertise from project partners at the University of York, The University of Queensland and the University of Bergen, the project will discover how depleted the current marine environment is, what measures are needed to help biodiversity to recover and how long this might take.
Prof Oliver Craig, Department of Archaeology, Director of BioArCh
Prof Geoff Bailey, Department of Archaeology
Dr Kwaku Afrifa, Department of Archaeology
Dr David Orton, Department of Archaeology
Prof Kirsty Penkman, Department of Chemistry
Dr Harry Robson, Department of Archaeology
Dr Jen Harland, Department of Archaeology
The SEACHANGE project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 856488).
University of Exeter
Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz
University of Copenhagen