Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences

Ocean Life, Planet Health

Strategic Plan

The Executive Summary below, from our 2009-2014 Strategic Plan, provides an overview of where Bigelow Laboratory was several years ago, prior to moving in to the East Boothbay Ocean Science and Education campus. Guided by Five Year Business Plans, many of the goals set forth in our 2009-2014 Strategic Plan have been met or exceeded. To find out more about our accomplishments, please see our recent Annual Reports.

The Laboratory is in the midst of a new round of strategic planning. For more information, please contact our Executive Director.

2009-2014 Strategic Plan for Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences

Executive Summary

Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences is a unique and remarkable institution, which both strongly supports “investigator-initiated research”, and recognizes that meeting 21st-century challenges as a world-class ocean research institution requires us to diversify our portfolio with a “three-legged stool” approach promoting educational partnership and technology transfer, alongside our established tradition of innovative basic research.

The Laboratory faces significant challenges in adapting its aging infrastructure to meet the requirements of our scientific goals. We envision a major capital fundraising program, coupled with competitively won federal and state support, for upgrading our facilities. Within a decade, we aspire to own and operate state-of-the-art facilities for research, education, and technology transfer at our 64-acre site in East Boothbay.

We intend to increase our scientific complement of senior researchers over the next three years, commensurate with our infrastructure and financial plans. The areas of scientific research identified for these positions reflect national and international priorities in ocean research and build on the Laboratory’s reputation in marine ecosystems research, especially microbial systems science.

Innovations in education through a substantive academic partnership, and technology transfer through the creation of the Bigelow Center for Blue Biotechnology (BCBB), will build on currently-funded developments supported by the National Science Foundation. These include the designation of the Laboratory as a Research Experience for Undergraduates site, the expansion of the national Center for the Culture of Marine Phytoplankton to include bacteria and viruses (a “world first”), and establishment of a national center for single cell genomics.

This Strategic Plan sets out the context for and approach to placing Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences on a sustainable and planned path commensurate with a world-class oceanographic research institution capable of examining the characteristics, connections, and implications of ecosystem function, particularly at microbial scales, to the long term health of the oceans and global change dynamics.


Bigelow Laboratory: Global Ocean Research