• Bioactive Compounds in Coral Reefs

    Session Chair:
    Dr. Lilibeth A. Salvador-Reyes
    The Marine Science Institute,University of the Philippines

  • Schedule

    Date: Monday, June 4, 2018
    Time: 14:30-16:00
    Venue: Cebu Grand Ballroom

  • Adaptation and Acclimation of Coral Reef Species as a Response to Global Change

    Session Chairs:

    Dr. Timothy Ravasi
    King Abdullah University of Science and Technology

    Dr. Celia Schunter
    King Abdullah University of Science and Technology

    Dr. Moises A Bernal
    King Abdullah University of Science and Technology

  • Description

    Anthropogenic activities are leading to global climate change at an unprecedented rate. A plethora of studies have suggested that these anomalies in climate can lead to severe consequences to the marine environment, specially for poikiloterm species that constitute them. Further, there is evidence that an increase in concentration of atmospheric CO2 will lead to severe disruption of key processes such as calcification, development during larval stages, predator and prey recognition, among others. However, most of these studies do not take into the capacity for marine organisms to adapt and acclimate to such fast changes. Thus, surveys have identified populations exposed to extreme conditions that have adapted to environmental oscillations, revealing the genes and metabolic pathways associated with the ability to cope with such changes.

    A growing body of research also exemplifies how species can acclimate to unusual settings if individuals are exposed at early life stages, and how tolerance attained during their lifetime can be inherited by its progeny via epigenetic mechanisms. Understanding the mechanisms of how marine species cope with environmental shifts is imperative to understand their fate in a changing planet. Further, this session will address the contribution of mechanisms of rapid evolution /phenotypic plasticity to the adaptive response of coral reef organisms to changing environments and will assemble cross-disciplinary studies from a variety of taxa and biological scales.

  • Schedule

    Date: Tuesday, June 5, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-16:00

    Date: Wednesday, June 6, 2018
    Time: 14:30-16:00

    Date: Thursday, June 7, 2018
    Time: 14:30-16:00

    Venue: Cebu Grand Ballroom

  • Ocean Acidification

    Session Chairs:
    Dr. Malou McGlone
    The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines

    Dr. Gil S. Jacinto
    The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines

  • Description

    Climate change has been a global concern especially its impacts on the marine environment. One of the critical issues related to climate change is ocean acidification. The session will discuss the responses of marine organisms, populations, and communities to ocean acidification. The information and insights shared in the session will help assessments on future impacts of ocean acidification on marine ecosystems, especially on coral reefs. It will enable resource and fisheries managers, and policymakers to consider and develop effective long-term mitigation and adaptation strategies. Experts and young scientists who are interested in ocean acidification will have an opportunity to share scientific findings and exchange knowledge in this session.

  • Schedule

    Date: Friday, June 8, 2018
    Time: 14:30-17:00
    Venue: Cebu Grand Ballroom

  • Biodiversity and Evolution of Coral Reef Organisms

    Session Chairs:

    Dr. Danwei Huang,National University of Singapore

    Dr. Francesca Benzoni, University of Milano

    Dr. Hironobu Fukami, University of Miyazaki

    Dr. James Reimer, University of the Ryukyus

  • Description

    The myriad of life forms on the coral reef have traditionally been studied based on gross morphology, yet a wide variety of data ranging from small-scale morphology to DNA barcodes and genomic sequences have challenged the assumed order of many important reef groups. The sheer volume of data produced by these new approaches has enabled necessary revisionary work that is already impacting estimates of biodiversity at various spatial and temporal scales. In particular, geographic patterns are being updated, and extinct organisms can be studied alongside living ones, drawing a more accurate and holistic picture of coral reef biodiversity in an evolutionary perspective. This session focuses on findings from the integration of novel morphological, barcoding, genomic and transcriptomic techniques, as well as standardised sampling tools such as the Autonomous Reef Monitoring Structures, to uncover biodiversity, biogeographic and evolutionary patterns of coral reef organisms. The session will offer valuable perspectives on how modern taxonomy and evolutionary studies can contribute to the conservation of coral reefs.

  • Schedule

    Date: Monday, June 4, 2018
    Time: 14:30-16:00

    Date: Tuesday, June 5, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-16:00


    Venue: Manila A Room
  • Response to Stressors: Natural and Human Induced

    Session Chairs:

    Dr. Thamasak Yeemin, Ramkhamhaeng University

    Miledel Christine C. Quibilan, The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines

  • Description

    Natural disturbances play a major role in controlling the structure and dynamic of coral reef ecosystems. Several major natural stressors on corals and reef communities have been recognized, such as typhoons, internal waves, coral bleaching events, long periods of low tide exposure, direct and indirect impacts of phytoplankton blooms, infection of pathogenic microbes, outbreaks of coral predators, particularly the crown-of-thorns starfish (Acanthaster planci) and some gastropods, mass mortality of keystone species, etc. The impacts of natural stressors mainly depend on their life-history characteristics, temporal and spatial scales and structure of impacted coral communities. These stressors may have short-term and/or long-term effects as well as direct and/or indirect impacts on coral reef physiology and their associated ecosystems, population and community structure.

  • Schedule

    Date: Wednesday, June 6, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-16:00

    Date: Thursday, June 7, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-16:00

    Date: Friday, June 8, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-17:00
    Venue: Manila A Room

  • Taxonomy, Biology, and Ecology of Cnidarians

    Session Chairs:

    Dr. Suchana Apple Chavanich, Chulalongkorn University

    Dr. Yehuda Benayahu, Tel Aviv University

  • Description

    Cnidarians are found widespread in tropical waters to polar-regions, at wide depth gradients, ranging from the intertidal zone to abyssal oceanic depths. Cnidarian species can be highly dominant on coral reefs playing a major ecological role, including being hosts for symbiotic organisms. Despite their high diversity and long record of studies, particular in the Western Pacific Region, considerable gaps remain in our understanding of their biodiversity. A high number of new species and revision of new zoogeographical records await further research. Studies are required in order to understand Cnidarian taxonomy and phylogeny using advanced molecular tools. Discoveries of new bioactive compounds together with uses for livelihood and other applications are being unraveled.

  • Schedule

    Date: Monday, June 4, 2018
    Time: 14:30-16:00

    Date: Tuesday, June 5, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-16:00

    Venue: Manila B Room

  • Taxonomy, Biology, and Ecology of Reef-associated Organisms

    Session chair:

    Dr. Ma. Vanessa Baria-Rodriguez, University of the Philippines Marine Science Institute

  • Schedule

    Date: Wednesday, June 6, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-16:00

    Date: Thursday, June 7, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00

    Venue: Manila B Room

  • Assessment and Monitoring of Coral Reefs in the Asia-Pacific

    Session Chair:


    Dr. Wilfredo Y. Licuanan, De La Salle University

  • Schedule

    Date: Monday, June 4, 2018
    Time:14:30-16:00

    Date: Tuesday, June 5, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-16:00

    Date: Wednesday, June 6, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00

    Venue: Hong Kong Room

  • Coral Reef Assessment, Monitoring, and Technological Methods and Innovations

    Session Chair:

    Dr. Maricor N. Soriano, National Institute of Physics, University of the Philippines

  • Description

    The need to efficiently, extensively, and accurately assess and monitor the status reefs is becoming more and more urgent as bleaching events become increasingly frequent, and as other natural and man-made threats further endanger reefs. Given the size and extent of coral reefs, labor-intensive, expert-dependent environmental assessment methods need to be replaced with automated systems with artificial intelligence. This shift to automation couldn’t come soon enough. This session seeks to gather researchers and stakeholders to share their innovations, protocols, challenges, and experiences in using drones, robots, image and video processing, deep learning, and other cutting-edge technologies in monitoring and assessing coral reefs.

  • Schedule

    Date: Wednesday, June 6, 2018
    Time: 14:30-16:00

    Date: Thursday, June 7, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-16:00

    Venue: Hong Kong Room

  • Coral Reef Restoration: Research to Reality

    Session Chair:

    Dr. Peter L. Harrison, Southern Cross University

  • Description

    Coral communities and the reef systems they engineer are declining significantly in many reef regions around the world. The loss of corals on many reefs is now so severe that natural processes of coral community renewal through reproduction and recruitment are compromised, leading to ongoing declines in reef health. A variety of techniques have been used in recent decades to attempt to initiate restoration of coral populations on small areas of reef using various asexual and sexual reproduction processes. This session will focus on recent advances in coral and reef restoration research to highlight key ecological processes and related issues that need to be considered to plan for future successful larger-scale coral restoration.

  • Schedule

    Date: Friday, June 8, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-17:00
    Venue: Hong Kong Room

  • Coral Reef Geology

    Session Chairs:
    Dr. Fernando P. Siringan
    The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines

    Dr. Chuki Hongo,University of the Ryukyus

  • Description

    To better understand and evaluate how present-day and future reef ecosystems are being impacted by natural climate change and human activity, it is important to establish reef ecosystem baselines from paleoecological records. Additionally, it is important to reconstruct paleoenvironmental conditions such as sea level, sea-surface temperatures, sea surface salinity, nutrient level using the skeletons of marine organisms such as corals, bivalves, andforaminifera and carbonate sediments.

  • Schedule

    Date: Monday, June 4, 2018
    Time: 14:30-16:00
    Venue: Shanghai Room

  • Coral Reefs and Other Associated Ecosystems

    Session Chair:

    Dr. Ma. Vanessa Baria-Rodriguez, The Marine Science Institute,University of the Philippines

  • Schedule

    Date: Tuesday, June 7, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00
    Venue: Shanghai Room

  • Connectivity of Coral Reef and other Habitats in the Asia-Pacific

    Session Chairs:

    Dr. Rene A. Abesamis, Silliman University

    Dr. Cesar L. Villanoy, The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines 

  • Description

    Connectivity can be broadly defined as the linking of local populations through the movement of individuals. For most coral reef species, much of this process occurs during their larval phase when individuals disperse and successfully recruit to populations that may be 10’s to 100’s of km away (or more) from their parents. In some species, connectivity can also occur during juvenile or adult migrations across coral reef habitat and adjacent seagrass beds, algal beds or mangroves. Connectivity that occurs over larger time and spatial scales is central to understanding species distribution patterns and population genetic structuring. Within ecologically-relevant time scales, the extent of connectivity drives local population dynamics and may play a role in trophic and nutrient dynamics. The topic of connectivity has received a large amount of attention in many aspects of coral reef science in the past two decades. Over the same period, there has been strong interest in incorporating connectivity in coral reef management, particularly in the use of networks of marine protected areas. We believe that this session will attract a wide range of researchers including ecologists, conservation biologists, oceanographers, geneticists and ecological modellers. This session aims to showcase recent studies that seek to improve our understanding of the patterns and mechanisms of connectivity in the Asia-Pacific and their implications for coral reef conservation and management in the region.

  • Schedule

    Date: Wednesday, June 6, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-16:00
    Venue: Shanghai Room

  • Exploration and Ecology of Mesophotic Coral Ecosystems in the Asia-Pacific

    Session Chair:

    Dr. Fernando P. Siringan, The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines 

    Dr. Rene A. Abesamis, Silliman University

  • Schedule

    Date: Thursday, June 7, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00
    Venue: Shanghai Room

  • Bringing Back the Giants: Best Practices, Management and Conservation Research on the Giant Clams

    Session Chairs:

    Dr. Mei Lin Neo, National University of Singapore

    Dr. Peter A. Todd, National University of Singapore

    Dr. Edgardo D. Gomez, The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines

  • Description

    The large charismatic giant clams were almost eaten to extinction, as men exploited them for theirmeat and shells as a source of food and material respectively.Overharvesting between the 1960sand 1980s had accelerated the pervasive loss of giant clams across the Indo-Pacific, and in someareas driven to local extinctions. In the past four decades,numerous mitigation strategies and efforts haveprovided the immediate and effective solutions to local declines. As new threats arise such as global warming, this session hopes to gather fellow researchers to discuss and share their own recent effortsworking on these iconic species, from basic ecology, mariculture, population genetics, and conservation science and policy. The greater goal is to put forth a platform for researchers to meet others and widen their collaboration network.

  • Schedule

    Date: Friday, June 8, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-16:00
    Venue: Shanghai Room

  • Marine Protected Areas and Coral Reefs

    Dr. Porfirio M. Aliño, The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines 

  • Schedule

    Date: Thursday, June 7, 2018
    Time: 14:30-16:00

    Date: Friday, June 8, 2018
    Time: 9:30-12:00 and 14:30-17:00

    Venue: Beijing Room
  • Citizen Science for Reef Management

    Session Chairs:

    Dr. Karenne Tun, National Biodiversity Centre Singapore

    Tara Alessandra Abrina, The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines

  • Description

    We are living in exponential times, in a world where the sum total of human knowledge is estimated to double every 2 years (or less), with biological and scientific information doubling every 5 years. This, coupled with shifting communication norms where people communicate globally and in “real time”, challenges the way we communicate science to a general audience. In recent years, the rise of citizen science is proving to be one of the most dramatic developments in science communication by fostering a deeper and more intense exchange between science and society. At the same time, citizen science serves multiple needs in research and education. Coral reef conservation efforts have benefited greatly from citizen science initiatives that have, directly or indirectly, facilitated effective science communication. From resource managers to dive industry players, resort owners to educators, and scientists to journalists, this session provides a platform to share about various citizen science initiatives and science communication strategies for coral reef conservation, highlighting the successes, challenges and opportunities that can help reef conservation ride the next wave of public awareness and support.

  • Schedule

    Date: Thursday, June 7, 2018
    Time: 14:30-17:00

    Venue: Shanghai Room

  • Fisheries Ecology and Management

    Session Chairs:

    Dr. Cleto L. Nañola Jr., University of the Philippines Mindanao

    Dr. Wilfredo L. Campos, University of the Philippines Visayas

    Dr. Richard N. Muallil, Mindanao State University - Tawi Tawi

    Dr. Samuel S. Mamauag, The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines

  • Description

    Successful fisheries management requires understanding of the fish biology, its exploitation levels or harvest rates and demand (e.g. socio-economic aspect). Added to these that provide a significant role is the status of key major marine habitats. The depletion or destruction of seagrass beds, mangroves and coral reefs have compounding effect on the supply and recovery of the marine fishes in general.

    Topics under this session focuses on the scientific investigation and or information on population dynamics and spawning aggregations; home range, behavior, trophic interaction and habitat dependency; impact of introduced and/or invasive species; degree of extirpation; harvest and exploitation levels of reef fishes but not limited to Asia Pacific Region. This session will provide an opportunity for social scientist, fish biologist, mathematicians and modelers how they can work together to achieve a global impact by addressing the sustainability of reef fisheries. Further, it will provide an update and identify the gaps related to the topics described above.

  • Schedule

    Date: Friday, June 9, 2018
    Time: 14:30-17:00
    Venue: Manila B