Kent E. Carpenter

Kent E. Carpenter
Principal Investigator
Department of Biological Sciences
Old Dominion University

B.S.  Biology. Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne
Ph.D.  Zoology. University of Hawaii, Manoa.

Recent Publications
Carpenter, K. E. et al. (38 co-authors). 2008.  One third of reef building corals face extinction from climate change and local impacts.  Science321: 560-563.

Carpenter, K.E and V.G. Springer 2005. The center of the center of marine shorefish biodiversity: the Philippine Islands. Environmental Biology of Fishes.72: 467-480.

Orrell, T.M. and K. E. Carpenter. 2004. A phylogeny of fishes of the family Sparidae (Perciformes: Percoidei) inferred from mitochondrial sequence data. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution32: 425-434.

Carpenter, K. E. and V. H. Niem (eds). 1998-2001. FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes. The living marine resources of the Western Central Pacific. Volumes 1 to 6. FAO, Rome. pp. 1-4218.


photo by M.E. Jones

I first started studying marine environments in the Coral Triangle in 1975 as a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer working for the Philippine Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.  Having had experience in the Caribbean, I was intrigued at how many more species could be concentrated in a reef habitat.  I began studying how the physical complexity of reef habitats influences species diversity, but this only explains localized patterns.  My current research now focuses on understanding biogeographic explanations for species diversity in the coral triangle.  In particular, the conditions that influence the corroborated pattern that the central part of the Philippines has the highest concentration of marine life on the planet.  The PIRE project is a comparative phylogeographic population genetics program to investigate the evolution of the extreme biodiversity found in the coral triangle.  The results will also be an important means of informing fisheries and conservation management decisions