An Invitation from Bill Karp

Science & Research Director
NOAA/NMFS/Northeast Fisheries Science Center

I am writing to invite your participation in a program review that will take place at the Northeast Fisheries Science Center in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, August 5-8, 2013. 

The review will focus on the data that are collected to support stock assessments under the requirements of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.  Similar reviews are being carried out at each of the NMFS regional science centers and at our headquarters Office of Science and Technology this year as part of a multi-year process to evaluate many aspects of our science enterprise.  Next year’s program review topic will be stock assessment methodology.

A team of national and international experts will conduct the peer review.  The reviewers will consider both fishery-dependent and fishery-independent data sources.  Reviewers will provide advice to the Center on the direction and quality of these data collection and management programs.  Opportunities for input by members of the public will be provided each day. Documents provided to the reviewers and presentations prepared for the review will be made available on the Center’s website at: http://www.nefsc.noaa.gov/program_review/

Reviewers’ reports and the Center’s responses will also be made available at this website.

Data quality and transparency are both essential to the success of the Northeast Fishery Science Center and the value of the science from which management advice is derived.  I expect this review will highlight some of our strengths but also identify areas where improvement is merited, and help us to chart a course to advance our data collection, management, and use.  As the Science and Research Director for the Northeast Region, I consider peer reviews to be necessary steps in evaluating our science and in the process of change as we adapt to new challenges and innovative ideas.

I hope that you can find time to join us in Woods Hole for the review or to visit our website to look over the documents and presentations.