The Mid-Atlantic Environmental Research Institute – MAERI – was launched on 13 March 2018. MAERI, based at the Anguilla Community College (ACC), is a ‘Sister’ Institute to SAERI – the South Atlantic environmental Research Institute, based in the Falkland Islands.
The concept of MAERI was born through existing relationships and partnerships between the Anguilla Community College (ACC), the Government of Anguilla (GOA), the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC) and the South Atlantic Environmental Research Institute (SAERI). A series of discussions were held with these partners to explore the creation of an environmental research institute based in Anguilla. The discussions focussed on both how to consolidate a range of activities around research and training that were being developed jointly by the organisations, and how to adapt the research institute model that SAERI has developed successfully in the South Atlantic so that similar research benefits might be derived for Anguilla and the surrounding Caribbean region.
MAERI’s vision is to be an internationally recognised academic institute based in Anguilla and conducting world-class natural and physical research, undertaking relevant training and teaching; and building capacity within and between the UK’s Caribbean Overseas Territories (OTs) and beyond.
Although MAERI was created as SAERI’s ‘sister’ the concept behind MAERI is slightly different as it has been set up as a partnership of organisations, rather than a single organisation.
The core group of partners (Anguilla Community College, Government of Anguilla Department of Environment, Government of Anguilla Department of Fisheries and marine resources, South Atlantic Environmental Research Institute; and Joint Nature Conservation Committee) will be the driving force behind the institute’s establishment, and will provide the foundation for the development of additional partnerships and networks.
SAERI, as part of the core group of partners and as ‘sister’ institute, will work in direct partnership with MAERI to develop research opportunities and undertake joint research. This will include making links between the SAERI research network and MAERI; collaborating on research funding bids; and undertaking cross-territory training and skill sharing.