Steering Board

Marina Albentosa
Spanish Institute of Oceanography (IEO-CSIC) Spain, Research Professor

Dr. Marina Albentosa is a Research Professor at the Spanish Institute of Oceanography with more than 30 years of experience in studies of marine bivalves, both from the perspective of their aquaculture and from their use in environmental research. She has wide experience in bivalve culture techniques from broodstock, larval culture and seed, as well as in the assessment of physiological rates that integrate the energy balance in order to estimate their energy potential or SFG (scope for growth). She is also interested in the nutritional requirements and digestive biochemistry of different species of bivalves, mainly during growing, in order to improve culture techniques and develop alternative diets. She has been involved in pollution and toxicological studies using bivalves as biomonitors and species model. In recent years, Marina has been promoting the recovery of the environmental quality of the Mar Menor lagoon (SE Spain), amongst others by restoration of flat oyster beds. Parallel to this project, Marina and other team members work actively to raise awareness in Spain about the need to restore flat oyster reefs and the benefits this brings to marine/estuarine ecosystems and human society.

Kruno Bonačić
University of Dubrovnik

Kruno Bonačić is a researcher and assistant professor at the Department of Aquaculture, University of Dubrovnik, Croatia and heads the University’s new research laboratory in Mali Stonbay – the biggest producer of Ostrea edulis in the Mediterranean. The laboratory is primarily dedicated to protecting and developing the aquaculture of this species in the region. Kruno’s work is related to long-line suspended culture, environmental monitoring and hatchery production of native oysters, but he also has expertise in aquaculture nutrition, genetics and different production systems.

Stefan Carboni
International Marine Centre (IMC), Sardina, Italy

Stefano Carboni recently joined the Aquaculture Research activities at IMC after working from 2015 to 2021 as a lecturer of Invertebrate Zoology at the University of Stirling (Scotland, UK). IMC has a strong focus on low trophic species aquaculture and conservation research, managing – among others – an experimental hatchery for Pacific and Native oysters. For the past 6 years, the IMC has led several research projects on pacific and native oyster commercial production and their interactions with the local coastal environments and socio-economic context in collaboration with the local industry and local government. IMC has also recently become the reference organization for the Sardinian Regional Government’s marine spatial planning activities and it is in charge of the definition of the Regional Plan for the areas allocated to aquaculture development. IMC has also recently been invited as associate partner of the Italian “National Biodiversity Future Centre”, the newly constituted Ministerial network for the protection and beneficial use of biodiversity. Stefano strongly believes that more could be done to further develop already existing synergies between commercial bivalve production and environmental protection. This is particularly true in the Mediterranean region where environmental protection is strongly felt as a priority, but it is still also often perceived as a barrier to local economic development and employment in the primary industries.

Alison Debney
Zoological Society London (UK-Ireland Native Oyster Network)

Alison is the Senior Conservation Programme Manager for UK and Europe at the Zoological Society of London (ZSL). Alison has 25 years’ experience in delivering marine and freshwater conservation projects around the world focussing on the sustainable management of natural resources withbeneficial outcomes for both wildlife and people. Alison is the Chair of the Essex Native Oyster Restoration Initiative (ENORI), Co-Chair of the Native Oyster Network for UK & Ireland and a member of the NORA steering committee. Alison has recently been elected to the board of the European Wetland Association.

Boze Hancock
Scientist for TNC’s Global Oceans Team

Boze assists in developing marine habitat restoration in new geographies and provides technical support for partners and numerous restoration projects throughout TNC’s global portfolio. He also works to provide the science support for marine habitat restoration, particularly through quantifying the ecosystem services these habitats provide human communities, such as coastal protection, fish production and improved water quality. He also focusses on making the results available to the marine policycommunity and restoration practitioners (eg. https://oceanwealth.org/tools/oyster-calculator/). He is also working with the Society for Ecological Restoration to help align our work with the language and structure developed by SER to help unify the field ahead of the UN Decade of Ecological Restoration.

Tristan Hugh-Jones
Atlantic Shellfish Ltd. Cork

Tristan Hugh-Jones manages the Rossmore native oyster farm in Cork, Ireland with his brother Rupert, running 22 spatting ponds during the summers. Since 1996 he has run the Loch Ryan wild native fishery in Scotland, and is also restoring the Helford native fishery in Cornwall. He is a Council member of the Shellfish Association of Great Britain, and sits on the Association of Scottish Shellfish Growers management committee.

Bernadette Pogoda
Alfred Wegener Institut

Dr Bernadette Pogoda is a marine scientist at Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research. With a background in zoology and polar biology, her research now addresses marine ecology in coastal and shelf sea systems of temperate regions, focusing on nature conservation measures and ecological restoration. She is a founding member and initiator of NORA and coordinates the projects RESTORE and PROCEED in close cooperation with the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation. Both projects address the restoration and protection of native oyster beds and associated species in marine protected area of the German North Sea and engage knowledge transfer into society to communicate the role of biodiversity and other ecosystem services and functions.

Stéphane Pouvreau
Ifremer (French Research Institute for the Exploitation of the Sea), France

Dr. Stéphane Pouvreau is a marine biologist, working at Ifremer near Brest, in France. His current research is focused on the ecology and ecophysiology of temperate marine bivalves especially the flat oyster, the pacific oyster, but also the pectinids (Black and Great scallops). During his PhD, he has also worked on the pearl oyster ecology in French Polynesia. Most of his projects are connected with conservation, restoration, aquaculture & fisheries. He is in charge of a national long term monitoring program on the pacific oyster reproduction (VELYGER) and regional projects on the flat oyster ecology & restoration (FOREVER, REEFOREST). He is also involved in a new project on the black scallop ecology (MASCOET). Locally, Stéphane co-operates in a regional research site (ZABRI) in relation with the International Long-Term Ecological Research Network (ILTER). He is also a scientific diver and cannot conceive his work without going regularly at field. The restoration of degraded marine habitats in France and Europe is really becoming a priority and he is pleased to contribute to this by participating in the NORA organisation.
EXPERTISE: Ostrea edulisCrassostrea gigas, Other Bivalve Species, Monitoring, Oyster Habitat Restoration, Site Selection, Aquaculture

Jo Preston
University of Portsmouth (UK- Ireland Native Oyster Network)

Dr Joanne Preston is a Marine Biologist based at the Institute of Marine Sciences, University of Portsmouth. She founded the UK/Ireland Native Oyster Network in collaboration with the Zoological Society of London to catalyse a national approach and scale of oyster habitat restoration and facilitate best practice in management and monitoring of flat oyster restoration projects. Dr Preston provides scientific leadership for the Solent Oyster Restoration Project in collaboration with Blue Marine Foundation toenableresearch driven practice and support adaptive management.

Bill Sanderson
Heriot Watt University, Scotland

Dr William Sanderson Bill is a MASTS Reader/Associate Professor of Marine Biodiversityat Heriot-Watt University. His research concentrates on sensitive management and sustainable development with a focus on shellfish and other habitats of high biodiversity conservation importance, Marine Protected Areas, Ecosystem Services and environmental enhancement. Bill is a Research Director for the Dornoch Environmental Enhancement Project and St Abbs Marine Station and one of the hosts of NORA 2.

Hein Sas
Sas Consultancy

Hein Sas (July 12, 1956) is a freelance consultant and researcher, based in Amsterdam. He has studied experimental physics and after working 20 years in environmental research and consultancy he decided to become independent and devote his professional career, and much of his personal life, to restoring estuarine and marine ecosystems. About 10 years ago, Hein became aware of the -almost total – eradication of native oyster beds in the European marine environment and the ecological disaster which this entailed. So he decided to start raising interest in native oyster restoration and, if possible, helping to fund and develop restoration projects. In 2016 thisled to the creation of the Dutch native oyster consortium, in which Wageningen Marine Research, Bureau Waardenburg and Sas Consultancy cooperate in designing and executing restoration projects. The interest and amount of projects in the Dutch North Sea area has been growing rapidly since then, so Hein is currently setting up a Dutch native oyster network, in which all interested parties, ranging from nature restoration NGO’s, industry, government and science cooperate. Hein regards NORA as the essential organisation through which this type of cooperation can be achieved on a European level.