Synthesis and Legacy Workshops and Events

As the GOMRI Synthesis and Legacy efforts begin to expand in each of the core areas and through consortia driven efforts, corresponding workshops are now being set in motion. The combination of core area workshops, consortia and individual project contributing workshops, and cross-consortia synthesis efforts will determine how to best capture the program’s scientific discoveries and results. There are no upcoming workshops at the moment, please check back for updates.

The synthesis workshops are designed to be working sessions with specific outputs. Therefore, participants have been identified based on their expertise and intended contribution. Attendance to a workshop is by invitation only, but if you are interested in attending and feel that you would make significant contributions to the specific topic, please contact Michael Feldman at and Chuck Wilson at


  • May 10-13, 2021, International Oil Spill Conference 2021

(New Orleans, LA) GoMRI has submitted a session proposal highlighting GoMRI synthesis. The deadline for paper and poster submission has passed. Learn more here!

  • December 9-13, 2020, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting

        (San Francisco, CA) The GoMRI community is encouraged to propose sessions and abstracts!

Completed Workshops and Events

    • May 14-15, 2018, DEEPEND Synthesis Workshop I

      (Dania Beach, FL) The first synthesis workshop led by the DEEPEND Consortium was well-attended with 50 consortia members, students and affiliated scientists. The workshop included science synopses around the following topics: patterns and processes; temporal trends in abundance; linking the trophic levels; and quantitative faunal inventories and their importance. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of attendees.

    • October 23-25, 2018, Toxicology of Oil in Vertebrates: From Fish to Humans

      (Boulder, CO) Led by the CARMMHA consortium, the objective of this workshop will be to synthesize and describe what is known about these oil-related effects, in which species of each of the effects was observed, and current understanding of mechanistic pathways busied on DWH NRDA, GOMRI, and other research to date. The synthesized report will inform future oil spill response and assessment efforts. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of attendees.

    • October 31- November 2, 2018, Core Area 3: Gulf of Mexico Marine Mammal Research

      (Washington, DC) Through this cross-consortia workshop with LADC-GEMM and CARMMHA, the goals for this workshop will be to 1) summarize and develop a plan to synthesize what we have learned about Gulf of Mexico marine mammals with a focus on how this knowledge can be applied for future species management and spill responses, 2) examine remaining data and information gaps, and 3) provide recommendations on future directions and priorities within marine mammal and habitat research. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of attendees.

    • November 14-16, 2018, Core Area 4: Development of an Operational Community Health Observing System for the Gulf of Mexico States

      (Washington, DC) This workshop will be centered around developing the framework of an operational community health observing system to serve the Gulf of Mexico states. This system will aim to 1) guide health first-responders and public health actions following future disasters, both short- and long-term, 2) use relatively quiescent periods between disasters for monitoring, recovery support and follow-up, and adaptive improvement of the observing system, 3) continuously collect data that informs future planning and action. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of attendees.

    • November 27-28, 2018, Core Area 2: Marine Oil Snow Sedimentation and Flocculent Accumulation (MOSSFA)

      (Galveston, TX) The purpose of this cross-GoMRI workshop is to continue Marine Oil Snow Sedimentation and Flocculent Accumulation (MOSSFA) working group’s original mission to integrate and coordinate research efforts associated with oiled marine snow formation, dynamics, and impact for informing response, impacts, and larger ecosystem health. Click here to view the workshop agenda, list of attendees, presentations, and workshop report.

    • December 4-5, 2018, Core Area 2: Photo-chemical Fate of Oil and Oil-Dispersant Mixtures

      (Washington, DC) The purpose of this cross-GoMRI workshop is to synthesize knowledge of photo-chemical reactions at sea, such as oil slicks and dissolved and accommodated oil fractions, and on the shoreline, including beaches, marshes, and rocks. The workshop will also investigate additional chemical reactions with reactive species in seawater. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of attendees.

    • January 15-17, 2019, Core Area 1: Plume & Circulation Observations & Modeling

      (Tallahassee, FL) This 3-day, cross-GoMRI workshop will include four breakout sessions, focused on the following subtopics: 1) large-scale observations and modeling; 2) small-scale / near-surface / sub-mesoscale observations and modeling; 3) coastal, riverine, and near-shore processes and modeling; and 4) buoyant / rising plume modeling. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of attendees.

    • February 4-5, 2019, Core Area 4: Allostatic Load

      (New Orleans, LA) This workshop is a first followup to the GOMRI-sponsored Human Health Observing System workshop held in Washington, DC on November 14 – 16, 2018. Critical concerns in the design of any surveillance system are the issues of what to measure, with what frequency, with what instrumentation, and with what underlying rationale? Among the ideas and concepts discussed in the prior workshop was the notion of allostatic load (AL). A definition of allostatic load — one among several similar definitions put forth since its introduction in 1993 — is as follows: ‘Allostatic Load is the price the body pays for being forced to adapt to adverse psychosocial or physical situations. It represents either the presence of too much stress or the inefficient operation of the stress hormone response system, which must be turned on and then turned off again after the stressful situation is over.’ Workshop discussions will address practical measurement of exposure and its relationship to AL, beginning with conceptual issues and shifting to strategies for operationalizing AL. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of attendees.

    • April 9-10, 2019, Core Area 6: Defining the Gulf of Mexico Microbiome

      (Washington, DC) In partnership with the American Academy of Microbiology (AAM) and the American Geophysical Union (AGU), this effort will be centered around a colloquium on the frontiers of marine microbiology and metagenomics applied to oil spills, to provide a quantitative understanding of the ecological response of biological communities to oiling as well as the role of biodegradation in the fate of petroleum hydrocarbons released from oil discharge. Discussion will also include how novel findings can be used to improve planning, preparedness, response and recovery in future oil spills. Click here to view the colloquium program and list of attendees. The colloquium concluded with a public lecture by David M. Karl, “Station ALOHA: A Proving Ground for Microbial Oceanography.” Watch via Facebook Live.

    • May 2019, Core Area 7B : Webinar Series to Inform Core Area 7 – Integrated / Linked Modeling System

      (Virtual) Part of the Core 7B GoMRI Synthesis efforts is to develop a conceptual modeling framework that will synthesize new knowledge gained since the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. This framework will set the foundation for a model that can be used to address broad questions posed by stakeholders in the event of a future oil spill. To answer such questions the model must be capable of integrating natural and anthropogenic systems at various disciplines and scales. A webinar series will be held to gather information from the GoMRI research community. Click here to view webinar information and recordings.

    • June 12-14, 2019, Core Area 2: Fate of Oil & Weathering: Biological & Physical-chemical Degradation

      (Washington, DC) This multi-day workshop will look to synthesize findings and identify a unifying message across many Core 2 subtopics, specifically: Analytical Chemistry; Use of genomics and proteomics; Use of molecular biology tools to ascertain and measure response of marine organisms other than microbes; Physical fate and natural processes; Standardization of WAFs and CEWAFs methods; Photochemical reactions at sea and on shoreline; Microbial degradation in all sectors of the ecosystem; and MOSSFA. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of participants.

    • July 10-12, 2019, Core Area 5: Living on the Edge: Enhancing the Sustainability of Coupled Human-Environment Systems in the Gulf of Mexico Region

      (Mobile, AL) The organizers of this workshop seek to define actionable areas of future research in Core Area 5 (Ecosystem Services, Human Health, and Socioeconomics) by: 1) fostering a collective understanding of the coupled human-environment systems that make up the terrestrial and aquatic edge of the Gulf of Mexico and 2) addressing the challenge of translating and operationalizing results of the first goal into actionable knowledge translation that informs researchers, policy makers, local leaders, and residents of the Gulf Coast about solutions, as well as communication strategies, that can positively affect human-environment interactions upon which all depend. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of participants.

    • July 23-25, 2019, Core Area 3: Ecosystem Impacts of the Deepwater Horizon Event: Assembling the Record of Species and Community Change

      (St. Petersburg, FL) The objective of this workshop is to assemble time series data for ecosystem components monitored in regions impacted by the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) spill. These data exist over a wide variety of scales and have been collected for multiple objectives. Using information from these various sources, participants will assemble information and report on the extent to which population trajectories changed before/after the DWH event. Time series data on contaminant concentrations, histopathological conditions and other relevant information will be reviewed. The outcome of this workshop will be a journal article synthesis of information across ecotypes and trophic levels. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of participants.

    • October 9-11, 2019, Core Area 3: Vulnerability and Resilience of Species and Ecosystems to Large-Scale Contamination Events: Lessons from Deepwater Horizon

      (Washington, DC) The objective of this workshop is to prepare a high-level quantitative synthesis of longitudinal (time series) information indexing the population and ecosystem trajectories of marine species and ecosystems impacted by the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) accident. The workshop will evaluate life history and associated scale effects that are implicated in the decline and potential recovery of ecosystem components, including life span, fractions of populations impacted by the spill, population connectivity among potential source populations, and sensitivity of various life stages to oil contaminants. Correlations among time series will be evaluated and compared with ecotype specific food webs (e.g., Peterson et al. 2003) to evaluate species interactions potentially affected by the spill. Vulnerability/susceptibility of various impacted resources will be evaluated. Click here to view the workshop agenda and list of participants.

    • October 15-17, 2019, Core Area 7A: Operational Oil Spill Forecasting

      (Washington, DC) The objectives of this workshop are to review the state of the art of operational modeling (including operational ocean, wave, and weather forecasting) before GoMRI, establish the advances made or that are now achievable as a result of GoMRI research, and to identify desired future developments, the opportunities for achieving them, and the remaining gaps in the knowledge, including the technology required. Click here for the workshop agenda, list of participants, and workshop report.

    • December 9-13, 2019, AGU Fall Meeting

      (San Francisco, CA) The GoMRI community was encouraged to propose sessions and abstracts for the Centennial Fall Meeting! Click here for the meeting program.

    • January 6-9, 2020, NCSE 2020 Annual Conference

      (Washington, DC) A session entitled 10 years since DWH – Lessons learned from the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative was led by the GoMRI Research Board. Learn more here.

    • February 3-6, 2020, Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill & Ecosystem Science Conference

      (Tampa, FL) The GoMRI Synthesis Symposium and Reception took place on Monday, February 3rd!

    • February 13-16, 2020, AAAS Annual Meeting

      (Seattle, WA) The GoMRI Research Board held a session intended to build interest in GoMRI synthesis messages. Learn more here!

    • February 16-21, 2020, Ocean Sciences Meeting

      (San Diego, CA) Several GoMRI scientists held sessions and talks during the conference.

    • April 28-29, 2020, Core Area 3: Oil Spill Impacts on Wetland Ecosystems 

      (Remote) The main objective of the Oil Spill Impacts on Wetland Ecosystems workshop was to dig deeper into answering the following questions: 1) What were the realized effects of the DWH oil spill on coastal wetlands and were initial impact-predictions confirmed? If not, Why? and 2) How do ecosystem-component interactions and feedbacks determine overall wetland response to the spill? The workshop summarized the effects of Deepwater Horizon on structural and functional components of coastal wetlands as well as identified the interactions and feedback among the various components of the system of oiling. Click here to view the workshop agenda. 

    • May 5-7, 2020, Core Area 7B: Modeling for Synthesis

      (Remote) The main objective of the Modeling for Synthesis workshop was to construct key research and policy questions using a future systems dynamics model framework. To achieve this goal, the group first discussed the existing information and available modeling resources needed to answer such questions. Through such discussions, they identified research areas requiring further model development and strategized how future research can be conducted.