Dr. Jennifer Selgrath is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow who specializes in social-ecological systems, conservation, historical ecology, resilience, participatory action research, and landscape ecology. In her research she uses a trans-disciplinary approach to assess biodiversity change in Monterey Bay over the past 150 years. She also works on long-term changes in the sustainability of small-scale fisheries, explores the connection between fisheries and governance, and evaluates the influence of multiple-stressors on the resilience of coral reefs.

Jenny completed her Ph.D. in Zoology at the University of British Columbia with Project Seahorse and the Landscape Ecology Group, situated in both the Institute for Oceans and Fisheries and Forest and Conservation Sciences. She earned her M.Sc. in Biology from San Diego State University and her B.A. from Wesleyan University. She is a former Fulbright Scholar (Philippines).

Stanford Advisors

All Publications

  • How Much is Enough? Improving Participatory Mapping Using Area Rarefaction Curves LAND Selgrath, J. C., Gergel, S. E. 2019; 8 (11)
  • The impact of environmental change on small-scale fishing communities: moving beyond adaptive capacity to community response PREDICTING FUTURE OCEANS: SUSTAINABILITY OF OCEAN AND HUMAN SYSTEMS AMIDST GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE Oestreich, W. K., Frawley, T. H., Mansfield, E. J., Green, K. M., Green, S. J., Naggea, J., Selgrath, J. C., Swanson, S. S., Urteaga, J., White, T. D., Crowder, L. B., CisnerosMontemayor, A. M., Cheung, W. W., Ota, Y. 2019: 271–82
  • Shifting gears: Diversification, intensification, and effort increases in small-scale fisheries (1950-2010) PLOS ONE Selgrath, J. C., Gergel, S. E., Vincent, A. J. 2018; 13 (3): e0190232


    Locally sustainable resource extraction activities, at times, transform into ecologically detrimental enterprises. Understanding such transitions is a primary challenge for conservation and management of many ecosystems. In marine systems, over-exploitation of small-scale fisheries creates problems such as reduced biodiversity and lower catches. However, long-term documentation of how governance and associated changes in fishing gears may have contributed to such declines is often lacking. Using fisher interviews, we characterized fishing gear dynamics over 60 years (1950-2010) in a coral reef ecosystem in the Philippines subject to changing fishing regulations. In aggregate fishers greatly diversified their use of fishing gears. However, most individual fishers used one or two gears at a time (mean number of fishing gears < 2 in all years). Individual fishing effort (days per year) was fairly steady over the study period, but cumulative fishing effort by all fishers increased 240%. In particular, we document large increases in total effort by fishers using nets and diving. Other fishing gears experienced less pronounced changes in total effort over time. Fishing intensified through escalating use of non-selective, active, and destructive fishing gears. We also found that policies promoting higher production over sustainability influenced the use of fishing gears, with changes in gear use persisting decades after those same policies were stopped. Our quantitative evidence shows dynamic changes in fishing gear use over time and indicates that gears used in contemporary small-scale fisheries impact oceans more than those used in earlier decades.

    View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0190232

    View details for Web of Science ID 000427446400004

    View details for PubMedID 29538370

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5851533

  • Incorporating spatial dynamics greatly increases estimates of long-term fishing effort: a participatory mapping approach ICES JOURNAL OF MARINE SCIENCE Selgrath, J. C., Gergel, S. E., Vincent, A. J. 2018; 75 (1): 210–20
  • Mapping for coral reef conservation: comparing the value of participatory and remote sensing approaches ECOSPHERE Selgrath, J. C., Roelfsema, C., Gergel, S. E., Vincent, A. J. 2016; 7 (5)

    View details for DOI 10.1002/ecs2.1325

    View details for Web of Science ID 000377215200030

  • Diverse Fisheries Require Diverse Solutions SCIENCE Ban, N. C., Caldwell, I. R., Green, T. L., Morgan, S. K., O'Donnell, K., Selgrath, J. C. 2009; 323 (5912): 338

    View details for DOI 10.1126/science.323.5912.338

    View details for Web of Science ID 000262481400016

    View details for PubMedID 19150828

  • Effects of habitat edges on American lobster abundance and survival JOURNAL OF EXPERIMENTAL MARINE BIOLOGY AND ECOLOGY Selgrath, J. C., Hovel, K. A., Wahle, R. A. 2007; 353 (2): 253–64