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John C. Ogden

John C. Ogden

John C. Ogden
Professor Emeritus


Office: COT 101
Phone: 727-553-3561


Ph.D., Stanford University, 1968.


Marine Ecology

Research and policy interests: Tropical coastal marine ecosystems (coral reefs, seagrasses, and mangroves), ocean and coastal ecosystem processes, marine biodiversity, marine resources management and conservation, ocean governance. NOTE: As an Emeritus Professor I do not take graduate students directly, but I am happy to discuss graduate programs with students and to serve on graduate committees.

I retired as Emeritus Professor from the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of South Florida in 2010. From 1988-2010 I was Director of the Florida Institute of Oceanography (FIO) , a state-wide consortium of 20 agency, university, and marine laboratory members including all 11 state universities.

I received my Ph.D. in Biological Sciences from Stanford University. After two years working on coral reef fishes at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama, I joined Fairleigh Dickinson University, helped to build the West Indies Laboratory (WIL) in St. Croix in the U. S. Virgin Islands, and began fieldwork on coral reefs and associated ecosystems. Over the years I have worked in many places in the tropics. I was Director of WIL from 1981-1988, operated the saturation diving facility Hydrolab for NOAA during this period, and directed the construction and initial operations of Aquarius, the only currently operational facility. Unfortunately, the WIL was destroyed by Hurricane Hugo in 1989 and never rebuilt. I have published over 90 scientific papers, contributed to numerous books, and produced several television films on tropical ecosystems.

My years of studying coral reef and associated ecosystems and documenting their steady decline from human disturbances has convinced me that scientists must become activists in translating scientific information into policy. To this end I have served on numerous federal and state commissions dealing with coastal ecosystem management, coastal observing systems, marine protected areas, and coral reef conservation. I was a member of the founding Advisory Council of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and served for 6 years on the Marine Protected Area Federal Advisory Committee. I currently serve on the boards of Sea Web and the Florida Ocean Alliance and I am a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Specialty Area

Marine Ecology

Recent Publications

Toth, L. T., van Woesik, R., Murdoch, T. J. T., Smith, S. R., Ogden, J. C., Precht, W. F., and Aronson, R. B. Do no-take reserves bene?t Florida’s corals? 14 years of change and stasis in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. 2014. Coral Reefs 33:565–577.

Ogden, J.C. Marine spatial planning (MSP): A first step to ecosystem-based management (EBM) in the Wider Caribbean. 2010. Revista de Biología Tropical 58 (Supp. 3): 71-79.

Ogden, J.C. A Review of "Ecosystem-based management for the oceans", 2010. Coastal Management 38(2): 186-188.

Carollo, C., D.J, Reed, J.C. Ogden and D. Palandro. 2009. The importance of data discovery and management in advancing ecosystem-based management. Marine Policy 33: 651-653.

Rogers, C. et al (25 authors including J. Ogden). 2008. Ecology of the coral reefs of the U.S. Virgin Islands. In: Reigl, B. and R.E. Dodge (eds.) Coral Reefs of the USA. Springer.

Oran R. Young, Gail Osherenko, Julia Ekstrom, Larry B. Crowder, John Ogden, James A. Wilson, Jon C. Day, Fanny Douvere, Charles N. Ehler, Karen McLeod, and Robbin Peach. 2007. Solving the crisis in ocean governance: Place-based management of marine ecosystems. Environment 49(4): 20-32.

Crowder, L.B., G. Osherenko, O.R. Young, S. Airame, E.A. Norse, N. Baron, J.C. Day, F. Douvere, C.N. Ehler, B.S. Halpern, S.J. Langdon, K.L. McLeod, J.C. Ogden, R.E. Peach, A.A. Rosenberg, and J.A. Wilson. 2006. Resolving mismatches in U.S. ocean governance. Science 313: 617-618.

Pandolfi, J.M., J.B.C. Jackson, N. Baron, R.H. Bradbury, H.M. Guzman, T.P. Hughes, C.V. Kappel, F. Micheli, J.C. Ogden, H.P. Possingham, E. Sala. 2005. Are US coral reefs on the slippery slope to slime? Science 307: 1725-1726.

Boersma, D., J. Ogden, G. Branch, R. Bustamante, C. Campagna, G. Harris and E.K. Pikitch. 2004. Chapter 6: Lines on the Water: Ocean-use planning in large marine ecosystems. In: Glover, L.K. and S.A. Earle, Defying Ocean's End: An Agenda for Action. Island Press, Washington, D.C., Pp. 125-138.

Ogden, J.C. 2001. Maintaining diversity in the oceans. Environment 43(3): 28-37.