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Hi, I'm Francielly

an Oceanographer from Rio

Growing up next to the shores of Guanabara Bay in Rio de Janeiro, an area breathtaking in its natural beauty but also facing catastrophic socio-environmental disasters, I was early on drawn to the ocean. It became my personal mission to clean up this bay, which, unfortunately, still sits in a dire state today (ref). But finding the path towards understanding the ocean dynamics there wasn’t straightforward, nor was there a relative to lay out the basics for me, like what a university degree even is. Yet, it only took one sentence from a school teacher to light that spark in me, followed by passing an exam for a high school scholarship, and the rest became history. I jumped into studying the ocean without even knowing how to swim. And how could I? My black mom hadn’t had the chance/time to learn either. Plus, to her, studying the environment wasn’t a known path to changing our lives somehow. But now, that's enough about the personal stuff.

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Throughout my academic journey in Oceanography and later in Geosciences, I realized that technology, when made accessible, could be a vital tool in environmental conservation. Particularly when empowering both indigenous peoples and local communities at the forefront of marine conservation, who are often the most affected yet the most overlooked in the dialogue around environmental solutions. This accessibility not only empowers local communities but also enables their active participation in marine conservation, fostering a collaborative effort that combines local and traditional knowledge with scientific research.
 

My commitment is to bridge this gap, ensuring that latest technology serves as a lever for positive change in coastal and  marine conservation. But the vision extends beyond technology. It's about nurturing an ecosystem of shared knowledge, support, and action that encompasses all stakeholders—from indigenous peoples, local communities, educators, policymakers, to technologists—working together towards a common goal: the preservation of our oceans, and therefore our planet.

While Benthos focuses on supporting coastal communities, I also lead the Sustainable Ocean Alliance in Germany. There, the drive is equally strong to boost local community engagement, underscore the importance of the oceans, and encourage vital cross-industry dialogues and events, just in a different geographical context.

Education

Beyond Science

  • M.Sc. Geoscience. University of Kiel, Germany

  • B.Sc. Oceanography. Rio de Janeiro State University

  • Data Science/ML. ReDi School, Alura, codecentric

  • Climate Change: Learning for Action. Terra.do

  • I'm neither a typical scientist nor a typical founder

  • Performing arts add creativity to my path

  • Fluent in English, German, Portuguese, 'Portunhol', and Brazilian Sign Language

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Garapuá mangroves (Bahia, Brazil)

This is me contributing to interdisciplinary research on the oil industry's impact on Garapuá's mangroves and its effect on the local women shellfish collectors and fishermen, as part of an elective course on mangrove ecosystems (ref). 

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