Current members

Prof. Dr. Marie Fujitani

Marie Fujitani believes that interdisciplinary thinking and transdisciplinary science are necessary to understand and support decision-making processes regarding our shared natural resources. With a background in environmental economics and quantitative conservation biology, she is interested in the incorporation of stakeholder participation into resource management and decision making, and how these processes shape and are shaped by values and information. She is committed to co-development of research with partners in practice, and has worked at the science-policy interface at many levels, including for the US government as a Knauss Marine Policy Fellow at the headquarters of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Her research interests are sustainable coastal livelihoods, deliberative processes, tourism and recreation, fisheries, and aquaculture. She is currently the head of the working group Deliberation, Valuation & Sustainability, as well as the project TransTourism.

Click here for Marie’s full CV.


Dr. Yim Ming Connie Kwong

Yim Ming Connie Kwong is a Postdoctoral Researcher in the Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research (ZMT) in Bremen, Germany. Prior to ZMT, she obtained her PhD in Geography from Durham University (UK), and an MPhil in Geography and BSocSc (Geography and Sociology) from the University of Hong Kong. Her research interests lie in three interdisciplinary areas: 1) values and practices; 2) moral geography, tourism and development; 3) participatory research and co-development. She has had experiences of working with local communities and non-academic partners in Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean. She is also the co-editor of “Navigating the Field: Postgraduate Experiences in Social Research”.

Click here for Connie’s full CV

Sarah Zwicker

Sarah is an allrounder when it comes to marine sciences. She started her education with undergraduate studies in maritime technology, continued with graduate studies in water and coastal management and finally graduated in marine environmental science at the University of Oldenburg. She has a strong interest in ecosystem services, environmental monitoring and innovative ecological engineering. During her previous work at the Alfred-Wegener-Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, Sarah applied cell biological markers of marine pollution to detect e.g. marine microplastics and dumped munitions and their effects on marine life. She now works within the TransTourism project of ZMT’s working group Deliberation, Valuation, and Sustainability, where she aims to identify biological indicators for the input of untreated wastewater into tropical marine ecosystems. Sarah is looking forward to evaluating the bioindicator approach with different coastal stakeholders and wants to contribute to the development of low-threshold and integrative monitoring concepts.
Sarah-for TransTourism

Ramón Alejandro Plazas Gómez

Ramón is a marine biologist holding an undergraduate degree from Colombia’s Jorge Tadeo Lozano University. He has experience with fish ecology, fisheries and environmental consulting. During his time in Colombia, Ramòn participated in marine cleanup campaigns and mangrove reforestation activities, while experiencing first-hand the damage humans inflict on the environment. For this reason, he came to Germany to attend the master’s program in Aquatic Tropical Ecology (ISATEC) at the University Bremen and ZMT. There, Ramón extended his natural and social science education which stirred his interest in transdisciplinary projects. Currently, he is a PhD candidate at ZMT’s working group Deliberation, Valuation & Sustainability. Within the TransTourism project, Ramòn’s goal is to acquire and provide useful ecological knowledge that enhances the sustainable development of coastal populations. To achieve this, he will focus on the functional ecology of the coral reefs communities, identifying the effects of the tourism-generated wastewater on the marine organisms.


Roald specialized in marine governance and over the past years has been involved in diverse projects focussed on sustainable fisheries, aquaculture and seabed mining. In the course of his studies, he gained professional experience at different institutions, such as the Council of the European Union and Wageningen Marine Research. He was also fortunate to visit places in the tropics, conducting fisheries research on Bonaire (Dutch Caribbean) and interviewing local actors involved in the offshore tin mining industry on the island of Bangka (Indonesia). Roald sees the great potential the marine environment offers for different stakeholders, and is very interested in finding the right balance between different economic uses and an adequate conservation of the marine environment for generations to come. He is a PhD student in ZMT’s working group Deliberation, Valuation & Sustainability now and will focus on stakeholder perceptions, priorities and power relationships and their influence on the decision-making process for tourism-generated wastewater management within the TransTourism project.