Dr. Omar Defeo | +598 25258618 int 7 334

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Omar Defeo is a Professor in the Marine Science Lab at the Universidad de la República in Uruguay. Defeo has worked on the assessment and management of small-scale fisheries and conservation of biodiversity for over 35 years, particularly in Latin American countries. His long-term research evaluates the effects of human activities on invertebrate populations and communities in coastal systems. He specializes in the development of co-management practices to improve the ecological knowledge and management of harvested species, giving special emphasis to the role played by markets, climate change and governance as critical drivers affecting fisheries sustainability and biodiversity conservation. He also works on sandy beach ecosystems and how they are threatened by climate change. He has published more than 200 papers (160 in primary journals), a book on Ecology of Sandy Shores and three FAO Fisheries Technical Papers. He has supervised some 100 graduate and postgraduate students from Uruguay, Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Ecuador, Chile and Italy. He has received the Pew Fellowship in Marine Conservation (2010), the National Morosoli Award in Science and Technology and two SCOPUS excellence awards (2010, 2018) in his country, Uruguay.

Dr. Diego Lercari

Adjunct Professor | +598 25258618 int 7 334

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 The activity of Dr. Diego Lercari is framed in marine ecology sciences, where he focuses on various fundamental and applied aspects. He has made various contributions to the analysis of the human impact on populations and ecological communities of sandy systems in Uruguay. He quantified in various ways the ecological impact of the Andreoni canal on the beach of La Coronilla-Barra del Chuy, Rocha. He performed a wide-scale characterization of the sandy beach communities in relation to variability in salinity and morphodynamics. He has worked on the implementation of computational ecosystem models, based on trophic ecology, which is useful to describe the state of ecosystems, as well as to simulate different scenarios. Applying these tools, he has focused on the analysis of the effects of fishing activities on the structure and functioning of coastal ecosystems and species of social and economic relevance. The implementation of representative trophic models of coastal zones allows it to contribute to the knowledge of the functioning of ecosystems, considering human activities as an intrinsic part of them. This knowledge could contribute to informed decision-making in the context of ecosystem management of resources and aquatic areas of Uruguay.   

Dr. Eleonora Celentano

| +598 25258618 int 7 334

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Celentano´s research focuses on the study of sandy systems of Uruguayan coast, with special emphasis on long-term population and community ecology of the macrofauna. Since 2001 she has worked professionally in research projects of UNDECIMAR, which aimed at knowledge of marine coastal biodiversity and population analysis of the main species exploited in these ecosystems. She has published the academic results of their undergraduate and postgraduate thesis and research projects, in international scientific journals, books, congresses and technical reports, in co-authorship with members of UNDECIMAR. As for teaching, she collaborates in courses at undergraduate and postgraduate levels in the Faculty of Science, Montevideo.

M.Sc. Gabriela Jorge-Romero

Assistant | +598 25258618 int 7 334

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The work of the M.Sc. Gabriela Jorge-Romero focuses on environmental impact assessment and marine management, with special emphasis on coastal systems. She has contributed to the analysis of long-term human impacts on the structure and functioning of coastal ecosystems in Uruguay, through ecological modelling. Currently, she faces the multidimensional analysis of the coastal zone as social-ecological systems, including ecological, economic, cultural and, governance aspects, merging a wide range of tools and work approaches at different scales.

M.Sc. Luis Orlando

Assistant | +598 25258618 int 7 334

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Orlando’s work focuses on the exploration of different theoretical approaches and their applications in direct contact with humans and their activities, an increasingly relevant approach in the Anthropocene context. He is currently developing his doctoral thesis on Ecology of urban beaches, working on the development of a quantitative framework for the evaluation of urbanization impact on ecosystem services provided by sandy beaches. For this, he contrasts the theoretical frameworks of urban and sandy beach ecology with remote sensing and multivariate statistics techniques, emphasizing the use of open and available data on a global scale.

B.Sc. Sofía Bausero

Assistant  | +598 25258618 int 7 334

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Thesis “Towards decentralized governance in artisanal fisheries in Uruguay: performance of the Local Fisheries Council La Coronilla – Barra del Chuy”


M.Sc. Ignacio Gianelli

Associate researcher

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 Ph.D. Candidate at University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain. 




Dr. Erika Meerhoff

Post-Ph.D. Researcher

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Thesis “Crustaceans population connectivity with different life strategies on sandy beaches of Uruguay”  



M.Sc. Rodrigo Postiglioni

Ph.D. Candidate

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Thesis “Influence of environmental gradients of sandy beaches on the behaviour and ecology in the wolf-spider Allocosa senex



B. Sc. Juan Licandro

M.Sc. Student

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Juan Licandro’s work develops in the field of marine ecology, and is focused on the study of populations in sandy beaches. The objective of his work is based on unraveling and evaluating the impact that different environmental mechanisms affected by climate change have on populations of diverse species in coastal ecosystems of Uruguay. In this context, he has contributed towards the comprehension of the existing relationship between changes in species’ abundance in sandy beach ecosystems and different climate variability phenomenon, specifically, extreme ‘El Niño’ events.