Past Participants

Jillian Pulsifer

Jillian Pulsifer completed her Master of Library and Information Studies degree at the Dalhousie School of Information Management. After a BA in English at St. Francis Xavier University in her hometown of Antigonish, Jillian remained for several years to manage a local restaurant. Although different from the world of academia, her time at the restaurant cultivated a passion for service and teamwork that lends itself well to the study of information management.

With a lifelong interest in environmental conservation and a desire to help people meet their information needs, Jillian worked with the EIUI team to explore how important research data and scientific knowledge gets into the hands of individuals and organizations who can make positive impacts.

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Vanja Avdic

V.Avdic profile picVanja is a graduate of the Master of Resource and Environmental Management program at Dalhousie University. Previous to this, she completed a B.Sc and M.Sc in Biochemistry at the University of Ottawa. The decision to pursue studies at Dalhousie stemmed from her long-standing interest in ecology, sustainability, and the role of science in developing environmental policy and strategies. By working with the Environmental Information and Influence team she gained a better understanding of the science-policy gap and helped to develop strategies to bridge the gap.

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François Bregha

François Bregha is a graduate of the Masters of Environmental Studies program in the School for Resource and Environmental Studies at Dalhousie. Since completing his B. Sc. in Zoology and Political Science at the University of Guelph, François has worked for Parks Ontario and the Canadian Museum of Nature’s malacology lab. This background prompted a desire to understand the link between management and ecosystems using molluscs as a prime indicator. His masters thesis focused on the impacts of ocean acidification on Nova Scotia’s shellfish based industries. This includes understanding the translation of information from the scholarly literature into an adaptive management strategy that will mitigate the impacts of ocean acidification.

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Melissa E. Cano

Melissa Cano ProfileMelissa is a graduate of the Master of Marine Management program. Born and raised in Panama, she completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Panama with a Bachelor’s in Biology. Her interest has always been the marine environment and the future of this fragile ecosystem. In addition to focusing on the Marine Affairs Program in fisheries management and marine transportation, Melissa worked in this research team to gain better understanding of the uses and influences of the marine information and be able to apply this knowledge to the progress of her country.

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Sarah Chamberlain


Sarah Chamberlain completed a Master of Marine Management Candidate at Dalhousie University. Prior to pursuing graduate studies, she received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Guelph in Marine and Freshwater Biology. She also worked as a Fisheries Observer for the Pacific Trawl Fishing Fleet, helped to develop an interactive education program for an aquarium, and was as a student research technician for the Canada Department of Fisheries and Oceans. Sarah’s prior work in aquatic and marine fields illustrated the need for individuals with a scientific background to bridge the gap to policy development in Canada. Working with the EIUI research team, she gained skills and insights into how to better incorporate the large volume of information about the marine environment into effective public policy in Canada. Sarah is currently working as an Intelligence Analyst with Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

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Danielle Cossarini

Danielle Cossarini is a graduate of the Master of Library and Information Studies (MLIS) student at Dalhousie University. As a student, Danielle was drawn to the work of the EIUI research team because of her interest in both the dissemination and use of environmental information, as well as policy development and the decision-making process. In conjunction with other members of the research team, Danielle was primarily focused on the Gulf of Maine Council on the Marine Environment (GOMC) case study. Originally from British Columbia, Danielle really liked living in Halifax and in her spare time enjoyed exploring the Maritimes, reading books, playing field hockey, and listening to music.

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Colleen Delany

Colleen Delany is a graduate of the joint Master of Public Administration and a Master of Library and Information Studies program at Dalhousie University. Colleen became interested in the EIUI project because of her work experience in both information and municipal settings and because of her desire to learn more about how information can impact policy and behavior. While new to the study of environmental information, Colleen enjoys diving into new fields, having previously studied recreation, financial management, and commerce.

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Kalene Eck


Kalene completed a Master of Marine Management Candidate at Dalhousie University and is the 2016 recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarship Program. As a born Belizean with a love for the ocean and the natural world, she attained an Associate’s degree from St. John’s Junior  College and a Bachelor’s degree from Galen University, both in Environmental Science. She joined the Belize Fisheries Department as an Assistant Fisheries Officer in October 2013. Since then, she has gained extensive knowledge on data and fisheries management. During her studies and professional career, she has worked closely with the fisher folk of Belize and local stakeholders in assessing the major fisheries of the Spiny Lobster and the Queen Conch. From this experience, she has taken an interest in law, the science-policy interface and, information use within fisheries management. Her work with EIUI stems from these interests and collaborative approaches currently used in ocean and coastal management.

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Gregory Hutton

Gregory Hutton is a graduate of the Master of Library and Information Studies (MLIS) at Dalhousie University. Greg’s thesis evolved out of his involvement with the EIUI research team of which he has been a member since early 2008. The thesis project itself used GESAMP as a case study and showed that a comprehensive metric measuring the use and influence of the group’s marine environmental grey literature using citation analysis must take into account citation data from various sources.The sources examined in the study included Web of Science, Google Scholar, Google, and monographs, and each provided unique insight into the use and influence of GESAMP’s publications. When not studying grey literature, Greg enjoys record shopping, listening to and making music, and some may say is a little too invested in cheering for the Calgary Flames.

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Shelby McLean


Shelby McLean is a graduate of the Master of Marine Management program in Marine Affairs at Dalhousie University. Prior to entering her current degree program, Shelby graduated with a Bachelor of Science majoring in Biology from Dalhousie in 2013. During her undergraduate studies she volunteered in a lab that specialized in coastal food web ecology. Working with a multitude of different coastal ecosystems ignited her passion for coastal ecology, ultimately leading to her Honours degree research, which focused on the temperature tolerance of different Nova Scotian salt marsh meiofauna (in particular, three different species of temperate Foraminifera).  Growing up on the coast of Prince Edward Island she was fascinated by marine life from an early age influencing her decision to complete a Biology degree and continue on to pursue a Master’s degree in Marine Management. Shelby is interested in researching climate change, especially, coastal hazards, such as sea-level rise and erosion. Through working as a Graduate Research Assistant with the EIUI, she gained insight into how information, in particular coastal atlases, can play a role in climate change policy and decision-making.

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Mike Reid

Mike ReidMike Reid is a graduate of the Master of Marine Management program at Dalhousie University, and served as the Coordinator for the Coastal Research Network. Since graduating with a B.A. in History from Dalhousie in 2004, Mike has spent 8 years developing his skills as a manager and planner through work at a variety of not for profit and ecologically minded businesses. Mike’s most recent work has seen him honing his skills using geographic information systems (GIS) technology to aid in developing climate change vulnerability assessments. Aside from this GIS work, Mike has been in involved in a variety of policy analysis initiatives on both the local and international scale. He has published on the subject of the recent changes in federal fisheries policy, as well as worked with the Municipality of the District of Chester in order to help review a series of municipal policies as they relate to climate change. Mike was awarded both the Marine Affairs Millennium Prize in Marine Management, as well as the Master of Marine Management Gold award for his work in 2012, and continues to find new ways to incorporate GIS into modern coastal and marine management plans.

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Andrew Roy

Andrew RoyAndrew Roy is a graduate of the Master of Library and Information Studies program and Juris Doctor candidate at Dalhousie University. He previously completed a B.A. in English at the University of Alberta. He has explored the impact of the digital age on the position of governments in environmental public policy. Andrew had joined the Environmental Information and Influence team to investigate the changing pathways in environmental regulation and the resulting impacts on the legal profession. In working with this inter-disciplinary group, he acquired the tools to properly foster and encourage coordination, cooperation, and communication among various communities.

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Douglas Seaman

A graduate of the Master of Library and Information Studies program, Douglas also holds a Master’s in English Literature from the University of Ottawa and a Certificate in Human Resource Management from Saint Mary’s University. An avid recreational boater and angler, Douglas was drawn to the EI:UI team’s research because of its potential to improve the health of the waters and ecosystems that are so important to him. From an academic perspective, Douglas joined the EIUI team because he is interested in learning about the most effective strategies for communicating findings of empirically-based environmental studies to policy-makers, and the extent to which these findings are impacting sustainability efforts. Some of Douglas’ other hobbies include playing squash, golfing, and recording music.


Julie Woods

Julie Woods is a graduate of the Master of Library and Information Studies program at Dalhousie University. In her second year, Julie was a student member of the EIUI team and her research efforts were focused on exploring the impact of Environment Canada’s scientific information. With an Honours Bachelor Degree in History and Sociology from Wilfrid Laurier University, Julie was new to the area of environmental information but brought a fresh research and information management perspective to the project. Outside of her studies, Julie enjoyed spending time outdoors (weather permitting), reading, and creating spontaneous craft/art projects.

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Diana Castillo

Diana Castillo completed the Master of Library and Information Studies degree with a thesis project conducted in collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Along with Bertrum MacDonald and Suzuette Soomai, she is preparing a paper for publication based on an analysis of usage of the international database, Aquatic Sciences, and Fisheries Abstracts. Prior to her studies at Dalhousie, Diana obtained a BA in Government and Latin American Studies at Smith College in the United States and then moved to Washington, DC to work in a non-profit advocacy organization focused on evidence-based policies. It was there she witnessed first-hand the importance of managing and communicating information in policy-making. Since completing the MLIS degree, Diana has returned to the US to take up a position as a Data Librarian at Oregon State University Libraries.

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