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Kiki Jenkins

Lekelia "Kiki" Jenkins

Ph.D. student, Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University (NSF Fellowship, Fall 1997).

I am interested in the study of the general process of conservation, specifically the integration of natural science and social science in order to address conservation issues. My dissertation is entitled "Defining the Role of Conservation Technology in Marine Bycatch Reduction." Annually, 18 to 40 million tons of fish, some 20% of the world’s total marine harvest, are discarded as bycatch (defined as those non-target organisms injured as a result of fishing activity). Conservation technology (i.e. a management method that uses item(s) and technique(s), one or more of which have been engineered by mankind, for the purpose of conserving organisms and/or ecological systems) is becoming a common management tool for mitigating bycatch problems. However, the use of such technologies can create unforeseen problems, thus it is important to research and understand the invention, implementation, and diffusion processes critical to the successful use of these technologies.

My research is motivated by the question: How should conservation technologies be developed and implemented in order to best contribute to bycatch management in marine fishery systems? Answering this question is critical for helping researchers guide their pursuits of technological solutions and for assisting policy-makers in identifying the most effective and lasting resolution of bycatch issues. My project will focus on two case studies. One case study will be the use of turtle excluder devices to reduce the death of sea turtles in shrimp trawls in the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico Shrimp fisheries, including those in Florida and Alabama. The other case study will be the use of various conservation technologies, such as the Medina panel, to reduce the death of dolphins by the U.S. tuna purse seine fishery in the Eastern Tropical Pacific.

My research has three main objectives: 1) Compose a history and commentary on the development and use of conservation technology in marine fishery systems of the United States; 2) Identify key features in the development, decision- making, and diffusion processes that contribute to the likelihood of a conservation technology being implemented and widely adopted; 3) Construct a framework to guide the development, implementation, and sustained diffusion of conservation technology for marine fishery bycatch reduction. This project is novel in that it will not simply revisit two well-known case studies. Rather, it will primarily offer a critical analysis of the increasingly popular but poorly studied trend of conservation technology to manage marine bycatch problems.

I received a B.S. in Biology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County in 1997.


Jenkins, L.D. 2002. The science and policy behind proposed sea turtle conservation measures. Endangered Species Update. 19:35-40.


Work phone: (252) 504-7629

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