Over 2,000 marine scientists, based for the large part in research institutes on the shores of the Mediterranean and Black Seas, but also in northern Europe and across the Atlantic, form the active "gene pool" of six CIESM standing Committees.

1 – The six committees

C1. Marine Geosciences
       main themes: geodynamics; active tectonics; morphology and structure of active/passive margins; submarine landslides; tsunami hazards; sediments and sedimentary processes; evaporites; volcanic and hydrothermal activity; mud volcanism and cold seeps; geoarchaeology; multibeam sea-bottom cartography.

C2. Physics & Climate of the Ocean
      main themes: water masses structure and dynamics; thermohaline circulation; air-sea interactions; climatic variability; mesoscale phenomena; hydrodynamic processes; small scale mixing and turbulence; sea level; waves; operational oceanography.

C3. Marine Biogeochemistry
     main themes: chemical fluxes; trace metal speciation; sediment geochemistry; bioaccumulation and effects of contaminants; water chemistry.

C4. Marine Microbiology & Biotechnology
      main themes: ecology and biodiversity of marine prokaryotes (Archaea and Bacteria); viruses and hetero - and autotrophic protists (i.e., phytoplankton); microbial food web interactions; microbial pathogens.

C5. Living Resources & Marine Ecosystems
      main themes: biodiversity changes; exotic species; fauna and flora of the water column and sea bottom; life histories adaptations; food webs; dynamics of species of commercial interest; aquaculture.

C6. Coastal Systems & Marine Policies
      main themes: coastal processes; coastal erosion; land-sea interfaces (estuaries, lagoons, deltas); scientific aspects of ICZM; climate change impacts; coastal vulnerability; river fluxes to the coastal zone, natural and anthropogenic changes.

2 Committees in action

Through CIESM Congress sessions, CIESM Research Workshops and frequent electronic exchange, the Committees provide researchers with many opportunities to present, confront and publish their latest hypotheses, data and perspectives.

CIESM workshops in particular aim to explore emerging themes of research at the Mediterranean level.  They often initiate follow-up collaborative research activities with an interdisciplinary flavour.

3 Committees' chairs

The Presidents of each Committee are elected by secret ballot every three years during the CIESM Congress, among researchers of international stature.
At the moment they consist of Dr. LuÍs Pinheiro (Italy), Dr. Katrin Schroeder (Germany), Dr. Marina Mlakar (Croatia), Dr. Monia El Bour (Tunisia), Dr. Hichem Kara (Algeria), Dr. Simone Panigada (Italy) and Dr. Ernesto Azzuro (Italy). They meet regularly around the Director General to define the main scientific orientations of the Commission, with a particular attention to:

  1. develop inter-disciplinary synergies and activities across relevant CIESM Committees and with ongoing CIESM Programmes;
  2. promote excellence and innovation in research through a cooperative network involving both the north and south shores;
  3. articulate linkages between fondamental marine research and growing environmental priorities in the Basin.