In December 2012, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation announced its new cohort of Marine Microbiology Investigators. Selected from a strong pool of applicants from around the world, these 16 individual researchers from 14 different institutions are pursuing synergistic aspects of marine microbial ecology.
Together, they will explore how the trillions upon trillions of microscopic organisms at the base of the ocean’s food webs interact with each other and their environment. Representing a variety of fields including microbiology, oceanography, geochemistry, ecology, computational modeling, and engineering, these scientists will help uncover how the ocean’s most abundant yet smallest organisms affect the movement of nutrients in our oceans. In the process, they’ll provide new insights—and propose new and exciting questions—about our basic understanding of ocean ecosystems and pressing issues like climate regulation and change.
The 16 investigators are:
- Andrew Allen, J. Craig Venter Institute
- Ginger Armbrust, University of Washington
- Kay Bidle, Rutgers University
- Edward DeLong, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- Curtis Deutsch, University of California-Los Angeles
- Nicole Dubilier, Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology
- Michael Follows, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- Jed Fuhrman, University of Southern California
- David Karl, University of Hawaii
- Victoria Orphan, California Institute of Technology
- Ann Pearson, Harvard University
- Forest Rohwer, San Diego State University
- Mak Saito, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
- Roman Stocker, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- Matthew Sullivan, University of Arizona
- Alexandra Worden, Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
How do the Investigator awards support the mission of the Foundation’s Science Program and the Marine Microbiology Initiative?
- We fund areas of science where we can make a difference: The Foundation seeks to support early-stage work or emerging fields that are innovative, have high potential and are underfunded so that our grantmaking can make a difference in moving a field forward. These investigators are leaders in marine microbial ecology and related fields, and with the Foundation’s support, they are encouraged to conduct riskier research than would typically be supported by traditional funding sources. These awards will give them the additional flexibility to extend beyond their current projects, and to work to uncover the underlying principles that govern microbial interactions and that influence the flow of nutrients in marine microbial ecosystems.
- We look for opportunities to spark discovery and advance and transform entire fields. Since it was launched in 2004, the Marine Microbiology Initiative has accelerated the rate of discovery in the field of microbial oceanography. For example, through supporting DNA sequencing and new sensor technologies, the Marine Microbiology Initiative has enabled researchers to reveal the immense diversity of microbes in the ocean and the important roles they play in regulating both the ocean environment and our atmosphere. This program will build on the breakthroughs achieved over the last eight years, and connect scientists from across different disciplines to identify and fill gaps in knowledge in the field of marine microbial ecology.
Click here for frequently asked questions about the competition.
See the original announcement about the competition here.