SOLSTICE-WIO is a four-year projects funded by the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF).  The project addresses three sustainable development  challenges facing developing countries:

  • Secure and resilient food systems
  • Resilience and action on short-term environmental shocks and long-term environmental change
  • Reduction in poverty and inequality

Partners and project activities

The project brings together 21 organisations from the UK and Western Indian Ocean.  Together they will:

  • undertake collaborative research focusing on case studies from Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa,
  • increase research capability through mentoring of early-career scientists,  training courses and on-line tutorials for marine professionals,
  • build on existing regional initiatives to engage with policy makers and fisheries managers to meet their information needs, 
  • work with local communities to build on their understanding of the issues and increase ocean literacy by sharing scientific information.

Support for WIO efforts to implement an ecosystem approach to fisheries

Countries in the Western Indian Ocean recognise the need for an ecosystem approach to fisheries (EAF) and management strategies that are sustainable, feasible and broadly acceptable to all stakeholders.  Achieving this requires information that recongnises the complexity of the coupled human, natural, and climate interactions that affect fisheries and the ecosystems that support them.

Despite their good intentions, countries in the region have made only modest progress towards their common goal.  Full implementation of EAF requires improved scientific capacity, refined monitoring programmes, and a better understanding of how to integrate science into fisheries policies and management practices. SOLSTICE-WIO will address these challenges by

  • growing people-based marine research capability in WIO countries through collaborative research and hands-on training using cost-effective  state-of-the-art technologies;
  • strengthening ability of UK marine scientists to apply leading-edge technologies to the problems facing developing countries;
  • improving the ability of WIO scientists to effectively transfer scientific information into WIO policy processes at national and regional levels; 
  • providing ongoing mutual support by  building lasting strategic research partnerships between UK marine science, regional centres of excellence, NGOs and government agencies in the WIO.