Research & Discovery

researchers on the Chesapeake BayAs the University System of Maryland’s environmental research institution, UMCES provides policymakers and natural resource managers with the most scientifically-advanced information available to tackle the environmental problems facing Maryland, the nation and the world.

The Center’s research programs focus on marine, freshwater and estuarine ecosystems, with a focus on four key areas:

  • Ecosystem-based management looks at all the links among living and non-living resources, rather than considering single issues in isolation. By considering human activities, their benefits and potential impacts within the context of the broader biological and physical environment, the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science has developed a strong national and international reputation as a leader in its development.
  • Restoration science seeks to quantify impacts and set ecosystem-based goals for environmental restoration projects designed to improve environmental conditions.
  • Climate change programs seek to broaden our understanding of climate change’s effects on coastal ecosystems, specifically their sensitivity and adaptability to those changes.  
  • Environmental observing systems are critical to connecting ongoing analysis and computer modeling, allowing scientists to analyze data in near real-time and pass that information on to policy makers and natural resource managers to improve the way we take care of our environment.

Ongoing work in these areas is supplemented by comprehensive research programs is several additional areas.