Dr Ava Maxam joined the Mona GeoInformatics Institute (MGI) in November 2006 shortly before completing Ph.D studies in Oceanography at the University of the West Indies, where she also obtained a Bachelor’s degree (Hons) in Zoology and Botany. She is currently Deputy Director of MGI, where she manages the Natural Hazards & Environment Division, the Human & Social Division, the Software Development Division and MGIBlue. She has led consultancies in GIS application, coastal hydrodynamic modelling, as well as oceanographic, environmental, ecological and bio-physical assessments. She has applied GIS and oceanographic analysis in projects on climate-change resilience; coastal characterisation, and sea-level rise effects. She has also collaborated Regionally on projects ranging from reef valuation, shoreline and land cover change studies, to designing databases, applications and map tools for Coastal Zone Management. Her academic research has led to publications on the effect of ocean circulation on Jamaica’s coral reefs and coastlines – highlighting the importance of coral reefs in ecological nurseries, creating unique circulation systems, and trapping particles.
Dr Kioshi Mishiro is a Research Fellow with the Mona Geoinformatics Institute (MGI), having been assigned to the institute by the Japan International Coorporation Agency (JICA). He obtained his Ph.D degree in Oceanography in 2013, and Msc. degree in Oceanography in 2010 from Kyushu University, Japan, following completion of his Bachelor’s Degree in Aerospace Systems in 2008 at the Sojo University. His professional experience is in ocean current measurements, statistical analysis, simulations and collecting observational data. His research interests include studies of the earth’s atmospheric and oceanic dynamics, and visualizing fluid dynamics phenomena. His research collaboration with Korea has resulted in publications on the Japan Sea circulation, particularly his discovery and characterisation of its seasonal coastal boundary current. Dr Mishiro’s residency with MGI will analyse the coastal marine structure and ecosystems of the Region with the aim of contributing to environmental policy.