[Coral-List] Interest in a South Pacific marine lab?

Christopher Hawkins chwkins at yahoo.com
Thu Aug 12 19:31:17 EDT 2004

Greetings all:
In order to address issues of local capacity and informational needs to support management responses to coral reef issues, the American Samoa Government, via American Samoa's Coral Reef Initiative, has embarked on a process to construct a marine lab on the main island of Tutuila in the central South Pacific.
It must be stressed that while we do have a completed Facility Plan, and are in the process of developing a comprehesive business plan, this endeavor is in its infancy.  No funding has yet been allocated, and no building has begun.
The facility would serve our local agencies, but space is also planned for visiting researchers to work in and carry out basic investigations, as well as preserve and store samples for shipping or on-site analyses.  Classroom space is also planned, to allow local and visiting university groups to conduct lectures at the lab.
American Samoa is US territory in the South Pacific, and is a partner in the US Coral Reef Task Force.  The territorial government sees increasing recognition of the myriad problems facing marine and nearshore ecosystems, and several recent reports (e.g. US Ocean Commision, Pew) as drivers for funding marine science research.
By way of this email, we are asking that anyone (independent researchers, government scientists, university programs with yearly research placements, museums, aquariums, other labs worldwide, students etc.) interested in utilizing a marine lab to study any marine or reef science issue take just a moment and answer the following few questions.  The purpose is to help inform our business plan to the extent possible by quantifying potential usage.  We are currently doing a similar survey in our local agencies and with our local partners.  It is understood that any answers are based on potential interest and hypotheticals, and in no way obligate anyone to undertake any rersearch in American Samoa. You may email your responses directly back to me. 
1.  Name of individual/institution:
2.  Do you currently undertake marine research in national or international locations?:
3.  Would you be interested in utilizing a facility in American Samoa for if one were available?:
4.  Please list a few examples (key words) of the types of studies your are involved with, or would be interested in begininng in the Soth Pacific:
5.  Would you or your grantor be willing to pay if the lab charged a fee for usage (to support Lab Director and staff time, as well as boat, fuel, equipment and space)?:
6.  Would you be intersted in using the classroom portion of this lab to bring small teaching groups to American Samoa for field-based learning?
6.  Other considerations not listed?:
I thank you for your time and assitance.
Christopher Hawkins
Coral Reef Initiative Coordinator
American Samoa

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