Rainer Froese

Research Director

Short CV

  • Ph.D., University of Hamburg 1990 – Biology, Germany
  • M.Sc., Christian Albrecht University 1985 – Biology, Kiel, Germany

Rainer Froese is senior scientist of marine ecology at the Leibniz-Institut für Meereswissenschaften IfM-GEOMAR in Kiel and a Pew Fellow in Marine Conservation.

Rainer Froese is the project leader and coordinator of FishBase, the largest and most widely used biological information system available on the web.

He was one of the architects of FishBase, having been involved since its inception in 1990 at the International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management (ICLARM) in Manila, Philippines. Previously, he worked on life history strategies of fish larvae and on computer-aided identification systems at IfM.

Fish are the largest group of vertebrates, with about 30,000 species, and interact with countless other species. Froese’s research focuses on biodiversity and population dynamics of fishes with the goal of conservation and sustainable management in mind.

He prefers data-rich approaches that emphasize commonalities rather than differences between species. He claims that the often-heard statement “Nothing is known about fish X” is usually not true because reasonable first estimates with error margins can be made for many life history traits if the maximum length and age at first maturity are known.