• Biological oceanography
  • Climate change impacts on marine ecosystems and biodiversity
  • Conservation and management of marine ecosystems and biodiversity
  • Marine plastics research

Sanae has studied biology of marine mammals and plankton though her academic career. After completing her PhD on plankton ecology in the Antarctic Sea at Tokyo University of Fisheries, she worked at Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC), where her research theme has been marine ecosystem response to climate change. She has studied mechanisms of interannual to decadal ecosystem changes in regional to basin scales using historically collected plankton data set, such as the Odate Collection. With JSPS Fund in 2009, she started taking a part in the North Pacific Continuous Plankton Recorder (CPR) Survey, which has been operated by Sir Alister Hardy Foundation of Ocean Science (SAHFOS) since the early 2000s. She has been a member of The Global Alliance of CPR Survey (GACS), which was established in 2011 aiming the global scale comparison and assessments of marine ecosystem changes.

Sanae was on secondment at UNEP-World Conservation Monitoring Centre (WCMC) as a Senior Programme Officer of Marine Programme from January 2016 to February 2019. With a long career in the area of marine biology and working experience in the international ocean observation community, her tasks were to support existing projects and contributes to the development of new projects of WCMC on linking ocean observation and marine conservation policy. Through the experience at UNEP-WCMC, she started involved in studies on marine debris, and from April 2019, assigned as the Leader of the newly launched Marine Plastics Research Group at JAMSTEC. Her current interest is toward not only natural science but also social science including science-policy interface, and ocean literacy which are important components to solve the problems of marine plastic pollution.

Sanae has been active in international community as a member of several international ocean science initiatives such as IOC/UNESCO-Global Ocean Observation System Biology/Ecosystem Panel (GOOS-Bio/Eco), MONITOR committee of the North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES), and Group of Experts of the 2nd Process of United Nations World Ocean Assessment. She is one of the co-chairs of Program Committee of OceanObs’19.

This animation as written and designed by Clare Buckland, SAHFOS Education Officer

Power of Plankton