Social, Economic, and Technology Research to Inform Policy and Practice

While the GLFT’s core historical investments in research and information have emphasized ecological and biological fisheries research targeted to fishery management agencies, fishery issues also have social, economic, and technological components and operate in a social, economic, and technological context. This is particularly apparent with regard to invasive species, which continue to alter the Great Lakes ecosystem profoundly.

Focal Themes

The main theme areas for the GLFT’s grantmaking in research to inform policy and practice are:

Themes are not necessarily funded in every year, and are not necessarily funded at comparable levels. At its discretion, the GLFT may offer annual RFPs that are more specific and emphasize targeted questions for one or more given themes.


I. Aquatic Invasive Species

The GLFT’s primary interests in this theme are in innovative research, development, or analysis leading to prevention of the introduction of invasive species in the Great Lakes, or the control or suppression of established species. Supported projects may include:

  • Research, development, and evaluation of innovative new technologies to curtail new introductions through established vectors (such as ballast water), or to control established invasive species
  • Explorations of strategies to encourage compliance with, and effective implementation of, those prevention and suppression strategies with a compliance element
  • Workshops, conferences, data sharing efforts, and other relevant capacity-building activities related to the theme

The GLFT does not fund primary eradication of invasive plant species such as phragmites.

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II. Socioeconomics of the Fishery

The GLFT’s primary interests under this theme are in efforts that:

  • Document the economic, environmental, and/or social/recreational value offered by various elements of the fishery
  • Explore social and economic factors that affect capacity to respond to aquatic invasive species (e.g., social/policy research on current shipping practices or regulations)
  • Examine the costs of aquatic invasive species

Particular priority will be placed on efforts that focus on current issues, values, and challenges and are germane to audiences including policymakers, environmental and conservation groups, and commercial interests.


How to Apply

Visit our apply page to submit an application. The forms and instructions necessary to guide you through the application process are provided in the application guidance document.

The GLFT Scientific Advisory Team (SAT), consisting of 12 members representing parties to the Settlement Agreement that established the GLFT (and other fisheries scientists designated under the agreement), will review the pre-proposals based upon the GLFT’s funding criteria (found in the 2013 Application Guidance document) in February of each year. Invited full proposals are due in April. Full proposals will be subjected to external peer review and be evaluated by the SAT. The Scientific Advisory team will then conduct peer reviews and make funding recommendations to the Board of Trustees. Grants are targeted for award in August.

If you have further questions about the funding process, please contact Jonathon Beard, Grant Manager, at (517) 371-7468

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