The Team

Principle Investigators

  • Nicole Starosielski, Subsea Cable Lead

  • Anne Pasek, Energy and Climate Lead

  • Anjali Sugadev, Law and Policy Lead

  • Hunter Vaughan, Science Communication and Social Equity Lead

Research Team

  • Peter Appleby, Subsea Environmental Services

  • Simon ApplebySubsea Environmental Services

  • Bruce Howe, University of Hawaii at Manoa

  • Antoine Lecroart, Alcatel Submarine Networks

  • Jacky LiangTelcoX Co. Limited

  • Matthew McKechnie, Mertech Marine

  • Tom Mortimer, Subsea Environmental Services

  • Kristian Nielsen, WFN Strategies

  • Abdul RavoofIntegrated Telecom Company

  • Andrea ReschiniR&G Telecomm Group

  • Thomas Simpson

Advisory Members

  • Michael ClareNational Oceanography Centre Southampton, ICPC Marine Environmental Advisor

  • John Tibbles, Member of Board of Advisors, SubOptic Foundation

Project Team

  • Leonard SantosCo-Project Coordinator and Media Producer

  • Nicholas Silcox, Co-Project Coordinator and Research Assistant

  • Iago BojczukResearch Assistant

  • Meg CongramResearch Assistant

  • Sorcha ffrench, Research Assistant

  • George Ramirez, Research Assistant

  • Adelaide Han, Project Intern

Peter Appleby

Subsea Environmental Services

Having completed my degree in Mechanical Engineering, I joined Subsea Environmental Services in 2020. Since then I have been involved in researching, planning and implementing the recovery of subsea telecommunications cables. Recently I have been researching the environmental benefits of SubSea’s activities. Subsea has been recovering out-of-service telecom cables since 2015 and has successfully recycled over 25,000km of cable, equating to some 40,000 metric tonnes of material.

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Simon Appleby

Subsea Environmental Services

I have been engaged in submarine telecoms cable recovery since 2010 as a founding team member of Subsea Environmental Services. My focus has been on securing cables for recovery, developing and implementing cable recovery planning, managing recovery operations, cable dismantling, material sales and general business development. Understanding the needs of the industry and how these fit into the broader opportunities presented to the business has been key. Since 2015, Subsea has successfully recovered in excess of 25,000 KM of cable from the World’s oceans and seas, returning some 40,000 metric tonnes of high-quality materials into the circular economy.

Iago Bojczuk

Research Assistant

I am a PhD student in the Department of Sociology at the University of Cambridge (UK). My doctoral work is exploring the material, geopolitical, socio-technical, and cultural dimensions of large-scale media infrastructures by Big Tech companies in South America.

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Michael Clare

National Oceanography Centre Southampton, ICPC Marine Environmental Advisor

I have been engaged in ocean science research at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton since 2012, focusing on understanding the impacts and interactions between natural and human activities in the ocean. I have been the Marine Environmental Advisor to the International Cable Protection Committee since 2019, and previously was at Fugro for a decade, working on survey and design of offshore infrastructure projects including power, telecom cables and renewables developments.

Megan Congram

Research Assistant

I am a wetlands and grasslands ecologist from the Canadian prairies. I successfully defended my Master of Science thesis at Trent University in July 2021, and hold two BSc degrees (Biology, and Environmental Earth Sciences) from the University of Saskatchewan. I have a diverse and eclectic range of research expertise, which include scientific communication and pedagogy, digital media preservation, and the human impact of climate change.

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Sorcha ffrench

Research Assistant

I am currently studying for my LLM in Trinity College Dublin focusing on the constitutional right to a healthy environment. I graduated with a first class honours in Law and Society from Dublin City University in 2021.

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Bruce Howe

University of Hawaii at Manoa

I develop ocean observing sensor network infrastructure, including cable systems. I have worked on projects including basin-scale acoustic thermometry and planning, development and operation of cabled observatories including the NSF Ocean Observatories Initiative and the ALOHA Cabled Observatory. I currently serve as Chair of the ITU/WMO/UNESCO-IOC Joint Task Force SMART Subsea Cable initiative working to integrate environmental sensors into ocean-spanning submarine telecommunications cables. I'd like to see the submarine cable industry contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals in a multitude of ways.

Adelaide Han

Project Intern

I am an incoming graduate student in the Communication Data Science Program at the University of Southern California. I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Media, Culture, and Communication from NYU in May 2022.

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Antoine Lecroart

Alcatel Submarine Networks

I have thirty years of experience in the submarine telecom industry. I have been involved in many projects applying telecom subsea products and solutions to other fields such as scientific research (undersea cabled observatories, subsea neutrino telescopes, and more). I am a founding member of the SubOptic Global Citizen Working Group.

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Jacky Liang

TelcoX Co. Limited

I have 10+ years working in the telecom industry and three years entrepreneurship in technology innovation, especially the next generation of human-centric smart city. After over 10 years working in the telecom industry, I have realized that no matter how advanced the technologies are, the natural law is absolutely right, eventually and ultimately. The balance between activities of human beings and the earth must be respected and handled in a good way, which, I believe, our research is working on.

Matthew McKechnie

Mertech Marine

I am a graduate of Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. During my studies, I completed a Bachelor of Arts degree with double majors in Business Management and Organisational Sociology. After the completion of my undergraduate studies, I was awarded a Postgraduate Merit Scholarship and took up my passion in the marine and ocean science fields. This led me to graduating Cum Laude with a Postgraduate Diploma in Maritime Studies. My research thesis focused on the role of a local maritime cluster in attracting foreign direct investment in the coastal region of Nelson Mandela Bay.

 

Currently, I work as a Maritime Research Intern at Mertech Marine, where I provide clear policy analysis and research on commercial activities with the aim to support corporate decision-making. In my role, I execute these duties within the functions of marine business development and marine operations.

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Anne Pasek

Energy and Climate Lead

Assistant Professor

Trent School of the Environment

I am an Assistant Professor in the Trent School of the Environment and the Trent Department of Cultural Studies, as well as a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Media, Culture, and the Environment. My research focuses on the history and future of climate politics, particularly carbon footprinting.

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Kristian Nielsen

Quality & Fulfilment Director, WFN Strategies

I am a Project Management Professional (PMP™) and ISO 9001:2015, ISO 27001:2013, ISO 14001 auditor and possess more than 13 years’ experience and knowledge in submarine cable systems, including Polar and offshore Oil & Gas submarine fiber systems. As Quality & Fulfilment Director, I review subcontracts and monitor our clients and vendors, and am the final check on all delivered WFN products. I am responsible for contract administration, as well as support financial monitoring and in-field logistics. I manage all WFN environmental sustainability efforts and actively advocate for sustainable options in cable system development.  I have worked in-field, at-desk and everywhere in between.

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George Ramirez

Research Assistant

I am a PhD student in the Department of Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University. My research investigates how digital technologies support Latinx media and popular culture.

Abdul Ravoof

Integrated Telecom Company

I have more than 10 years of experience in submarine network operations, submarine cable landing station, data center operations and submarine global infrastructure delivery.

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Andrea Reschini

R&G Telecomm Group

I have 25+ years engineering experience in the telecommunications arena, and supporting Optical Submarine Networks dry installations and commissioning from early 2000s. I’m based in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In the last decade, I’ve been engaged in research and programs development on Sustainability, Energy Efficiency, Renewables and Circular Economy.

At R&G Telecomm Group, a US-based company operating throughout the American continents, we provide a wide range of services in Cable Landing Stations, involving both Connectivity and Facilities aspects. Through research on trends and best practices, we facilitate understanding to our customers, find synergies, propose customized solutions and implement projects to achieve sustainability and circularity in their business.

Media Producer and Co-Project Coordinator

I am an Adjunct Professor at New York University and the Lab Coordinator of the MCC MediaLab at NYU. I graduated with a Master of Arts in Media, Culture, and Communication (MCC) from NYU in 2021.

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Nicholas Silcox

Research Assistant and Co-Project Coordinator

I am a research assistant on the Sustainable Subsea Networks research project and a Ph.D. student in the English department at New York University, where I study issues related to media and the environment.

Associate Professor

New York University

I am an Associate Professor in the Department of Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University, and author of The Undersea Network (2015), a book on the history of the cable industry and the social aspects of submarine cable construction and maintenance. My current research focuses on the environmental and social impacts of cable systems.

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Anjali Sugadev

Law and Policy Lead

I am an independent legal consultant and recipient of 2015 Rhodes Academy Submarine Cables Writing Award. I have presented widely on submarine cable regulatory regimes at several international conferences. My work focuses on the legal and policy challenges faced by submarine cable systems. I am author of "Global Regulation of Submarine Cables and Pipelines: Similarities, Differences and Gaps" (2016), "India’s Critical Position in the Global Submarine Cable Network: An Analysis of Indian Law and Practice on Cable Repairs" (2017) and "Submarine Cables in the Arctic: An Assessment of the Legal Framework" (2019). I also co-authored a book on comparative assessment of international and national environmental regulations on biodiversity, Review of Selected National Legislations Relating to Access and Benefit-Sharing (2019). In 2019, I was awarded a grant by SubOptic Association to present my findings on the legal landscape affecting cables in the Arctic at the SubOptic conference.

John Tibbles

Member of Board of Advisors, SubOptic Foundation

I have around thirty years of experience in the subsea cable industry, mostly with a strategy, commercial and investment focus. Although from the UK, I have worked on major projects all around the world and since ‘semi’ retiring in 2012 I have consulted and contributed several articles to trade media. Living on the tiny island of Bermuda for eleven years gave me a strong interest in the marine/oceanic environments and the critical role they play in maintaining the delicate balance that our world depends upon so much.

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Hunter Vaughan

Science Communication and Social Equity Lead

I am a Senior Research Associate heading up socioecological research at the University of Cambridge's Minderoo Centre for Technology and Democracy. I am Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Environmental Media and author of Hollywood's Dirtiest Secret: the Hidden Environmental Costs of the Movies (2019).