About Kristin Kleisner

Kristin Kleisner

Associate Vice President, Oceans Science


Areas of expertise:

Climate change and fisheries, bio-economic modeling, indicators of ocean health and fisheries status


Kristin investigates the science around combining spatial and rights-based management strategies to achieve sustainable fisheries around the world. She uses bio-economic and climate models to explore the potential for fisheries management to improve the biomass, harvest, and profits of fisheries, and understand the implications of climate change on the distribution of fish stocks and the implications for fisheries management.


Before joining EDF, Kristin was a joint research scientist for NOAA’s Northeast Fisheries Science Center and The Nature Conservancy where she explored the effect that climate change has on the distributions of fish in New England.

Prior to that she was a postdoctoral fellow for the Sea Around Us Project at the University of British Columbia working on the development of indicators of marine ecosystem health and fisheries status for various global projects including the Ocean Health Index. Her research builds on a foundation of quantitative stock assessment theory, spatial statistics, and ecosystem assessments. She is currently serving as a commissioner for the Boston City Conservation Commission.


PhD in Marine Biology and Fisheries, Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, University of Miami


Kleisner, K.M., Fogarty, M.J., McGee, S., Hare, J.A., Moret, S., Perretti, C.T., Saba, V.S. (2017). Marine species distribution shifts on the U.S. Northeast Continental Shelf under continued ocean warming. Progress in Oceanography. 153: 24-36.

Rosenberg, A.A., Kleisner, K.M., Afflerbach, J., Anderson, S.C., Dickey-Collas, M., Cooper, A.B., Fogarty, M.J., Fulton, E.A., Gutiérrez, N.L., Hyde, K.J.W., Jardim, E., Jensen, O.P., Kristiansen, T., Longo, C., Minte-Vera, C.V., Minto, C., Mosqueira, I., Osio, G.C., Ovando, D., Selig, E.R., Thorson, J.T., Walsh, J.C., Ye, Y. (2017). Applying a new ensemble approach to estimating stock status of marine fisheries around the world. Conservation Letters. DOI: 10.1111/conl.12363.

Anderson, S., Cooper, A., Jensen, O., Minto, C., Thorson, J., Walsh, J., Afflerbach, J., Dickey-Collas, M., Kleisner, K.M., Longo, C., Osio, G., Ovando, D., Mosqueira, I., Rosenberg, A., Selig, E. (2017). Improving estimates of population status and trend with superensemble models. Conservation Biology. DOI: 10.1111/faf.12200

Kleisner, K.M., Fogarty, M.J., McGee, S., Fratantoni, P., Greene, J., Hare, J., Lucey, S., McGuire, C., Odell, J., Saba, V.S., Smith, L., Weaver, K., Pinsky, M. (2016). Response of marine fish assemblages to regional climate velocities and physiographic constraints. PLoS One. 11(2): e0149220.

Kleisner, K.M., Coll, M., Lynam, C.P., Bundy, A., Shannon, L., Shin, Y-J., Boldt, J., Borges, M.F., Diallo, I., Fox, C., Gascuel, D., Heymans, Jordá, M.J.J., Jouffre, D., Large, S.I., Marshall, K.N., Ojaveer, H., Piroddi, C., Tam, J., Torres, M.A., Travers-Trolet, M., Tsagarakis, K., van der Meeren, G.I., Zador, S. (2015). Evaluating changes in marine communities that provide ecosystem services through comparative assessments of community indicators. Ecosystem Services. 16: 413-429. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecoser.2015.02.002

Kleisner, K.M., Mansour, H. and D. Pauly. (2014). Area-based mean trophic level: resolving geographic expansion in the MTI. Marine Ecological Progress Series. 512: 185-199.

Kleisner, K.M., Longo, C., Coll, M., Halpern, B.S., Hardy, D., Katona, S.K., Le Manach, F., Pauly, D., Rosenberg, A.A., Samhouri, J.F., Scarborough, C., Sumaila, U.R., Watson, R., and D. Zeller. (2013). Exploring patterns of seafood provision revealed in the Ocean Health Index. AMBIO. 42: 910-922.

Halpern, B.S., Gaines, S.D., Kleisner, K.M., Longo, C., Pauly, D., Rosenberg, A.A., Samhouri, J.F., Zeller, D. (2013). Halpern et al. reply. Nature. 495(7442): E7.

Kleisner, K.M., Zeller, D., Froese, R., Pauly, D. (2012). Using global catch data for inferences on the world’s marine fisheries. Fish and Fisheries. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-2979.2012.00469.x

Kleisner, K.M., Walter, J.F., Diamond, S.L., Die, D.J. (2010). Modeling the spatial autocorrelation of pelagic fish abundance. Marine Ecological Progress Series 411: 203-213.