Dr James Robinson

Lancaster University

Email: james.robinson@lancaster.ac.uk

James is a marine biologist interested in tropical fisheries, aquatic foods, and climate change. James is a Reader at Lancaster Environment Centre, and holds a Royal Society University Research Fellowship to study the ecological and social roles of tropical pelagic fish.

James received his PhD in coral reef macroecology, working at the University of Victoria, Canada, using NOAA’s Pacific Ocean coral reef monitoring data. He joined LEC and the REEFS group in 2017, focusing on coral bleaching and small-scale fisheries in Seychelles. James has worked on small-scale fisheries across the tropics, and led research on nutritional value of aquatic foods, from coral reefs to salmon farms.

Research Interests

James uses long-term monitoring data to understand how marine ecosystems respond to changes in environmental conditions and anthropogenic pressures, such as fishing. His research uses statistical models or simulations to translate messy observations into ecological  patterns.

James’ current work aims to better understand how pelagic fishes, such as anchovies and sardines, contribute to ecological functioning of coral reefs, the aquatic food supply to coastal communities, and will be impacted by climate changes.

Selected Publications

  • Robinson JPW, Benkwitt CE, Maire E, Morais R, Schiettekatte NMD, Skinner C and Brandl SJ (2023) Quantifying energy and nutrient fluxes in coral reef food webs. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 39(5): 467-478.
  • Robinson JPW, Mills DJ, Asiedu GA, Byrd K, Mancha Cisneros MDM, Cohen PJ, Fiorella KJ, Graham NAJ, MacNeil MA, Maire E, et al. (2022) Small pelagic fish supply abundant and affordable micronutrients to low- and middle-income countries. Nature Food 3: 1075–1084.
  • Robinson JPW, Nash KL, Blanchard JL, Jacobsen NS, Maire E, Graham NAJ, MacNeil MA, Zamborain-Mason J, Allison EH and Hicks CC (2022) Managing fisheries for maximum nutrient yield. Fish and Fisheries 23(4): 800–811.
  • Robinson JPW, Maire E, Bodin N, Hempson TN, Graham NAJ, Wilson SK, MacNeil MA and Hicks CC (2022) Climate-induced increases in micronutrient availability for coral reef fisheries. One Earth 5: 98–108.
  • Robinson JPW, Wilson S, Robinson J, Gerry C, Govinden R, Lucas J, Assan C, Jennings S, Graham NAJ (2019) Productive instability of coral reef fisheries after climate-driven regime shifts. Nature Ecology & Evolution 3: 183-190.
  • Robinson JPW, Wilson SK, Jennings S, Graham NAJ (2019) Thermal stress induces persistently altered coral reef fish assemblages. Global Change Biology 25: 2739–2750.