Born and raised in Australia I first ventured to the US as an undergraduate in 2006 for a “study abroad” adventure. I got that adventure at the University of Miami where I spent three weeks in the Galapagos Islands for an anthropology field course, became trained as an AAUS scientific research diver, and experienced the Dry Tortugas national park for the first time while assisting in the acoustic tagging and tracking of reef fish movements across MPA boundaries. I also had the opportunity to enroll in Dr Jerald Ault’s advanced population modelling and management course. After I completed my BSc in Advanced Marine Biology in 2007 at James Cook University in Australia my success in Dr Ault’s course gained me an invitation to return to Miami to work and eventually pursue a PhD.
My PhD research has been focused on the estimation of population mortality rate from the average length of observed fish in a stock. My research consists of understanding and quantifying the dynamics and inherent errors in existing models. From that understanding I have developed a new model that unifies existing models to provide improved estimates. I have also developed a novel fitting algorithm that will allow for dramatically improved estimation of non-equilibrium patterns in mortality rate. All of this research will be incorporated into the custom designed fishery assessment software MAST that I co-developed with recent lab graduate Marc Nadon.
My broader research interests span theoretical system modeling, parameter estimation in complex systems, and the development of software solutions to these problems. I’m intrigued by understanding how complex systems function and developing quantitative models of their dynamics to improve predictive power. I am particularly interested in exploring how functional models can be incorporated with model free data mining techniques to improve upon the individual predictions of either.
Ross Cunning, Nathan Vaughan, Phillip Gillette, Tom R. Capo, Juan L. Maté, and Andrew C. Baker In press. Dynamic regulation of partner abundance mediates response of reef coral symbioses to environmental change. Ecology.
Contact: Division of Marine Biology and Fisheries, Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, University of Miami, 4600 Rickenbacker Causeway Miami, Florida 33149, Office Phone: (305)-421-4914, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org