Research & Technology Working Group

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Research and the development of new technologies are critical in addressing invasive species issues.  Much more information is needed on the biology of non-native and invasive species in Hawaii and effective management techniques.  Effective, strategic management of invasive species relies on information and tools provided by the research community.

Research & Technology Working Group Chair: Dr. Mike Melzer, University of Hawaii, College of Tropical Agriculture & Human Resources (CTAHR)

Next Meeting: 

TBD, 2020, St. John 307, UH Manoa Campus, Honolulu, HI 96822

Resources & Technology WG Meeting Agenda  (scroll down for Past Meeting agendas) 

Chair requests contributions to the following Google Docs (please click on the links below to access):

  1. Research Priorities
  2. Expertise & Gaps in Research Areas


Position Papers of the Research and Technology Working Group:

Understanding the Value of Glyphosate in Protecting Hawaii, adopted January 2019

Make Hawaii State-of-the-Science in Island Biosecurity, adopted February 27, 2018.

Research and Technology Investments to Protect Against Alien Invasive Species, adopted June 26, 2016.


Recent Articles & Reports:

The Hawaii Legislative Reference Bureau (LRB) has released its update to the 2002 report Filling the Gaps in the Fight Against Invasive Species. The new report, titled Can’t See the Forest for the (Albizia) Trees: An Invasive Species Update, is located at the link below:

2015 Hawaii LRB Invasive Species Update

2015 Brown Tree Snake Research Wins DOD Conservation Project of the Year

Goals, Strategies and Evaluation Measures as outlined in the HISC 2015 – 2020 Strategic Plan:

Goal 1: An interagency research strategy plan is developed.

A comprehensive interagency research plan will ensure that invasive species research is prioritized, coordinated, and collaborative. It will prioritize research that is interdisciplinary and has direct management applicability. It will also emphasize and facilitate structures for results to be made publicly available.


  • Identify interagency research priorities.
  • Facilitate priority setting and planning process.
  • Identify and connect researchers with users.
  • Work with Resources working group to reestablish funding for research priorities.

Goal 2: Data is shared among agencies and organizations and made publicly available when appropriate. 


  • Identify data across agencies and partners.
  • Assess current data management tools and practices statewide and needs across agencies and organizations.
  • Explore information/data management systems.
  • Work collaboratively to standardize data sharing with focus on data being consistent, accessible, easily summarized, and reported on.
  • Implement a pilot study with a limited group for trials.

 Goal 3: The Hawaii Ant Lab (HAL) capacity is increased and sustained.

HAL is a critical institution working on invasive ant issues in Hawaii and across the Pacific. Its maintenance will provide interdisciplinary research, develop tools and methods for prevention and control, and manage coordinated responses in which there are direct feedback loops between the research and its applications.


  • Maintain ant species as a high priority invasive species.
  • Provide a forum for sharing new information and research results within Hawaii and across the pacific.
  • Provide technical assistance and support in the development of a statewide ant plan.
  • Identify opportunities to institutionalize HAL within an appropriate agency.

Evaluation Measures for Research and Technology Strategies

  • Establish timeline and benchmarks for development of research strategy plan.
  • Funding directed towards research priorities identified.
  • Track applications of research produced.
  • Establish timeline and benchmarks for development of statewide ant plan.

Research grants

When funding is available, this working group will oversee a request for proposals (RFP) process to support invasive species research as described in the HISC Strategic Plan. The working group may make recommendations about specific projects that may be implemented by member agencies or outside providers, as well as provide scientific advice to the Council to address current issues.

HISC research grants were awarded in FY 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2009. Funding from the Hawaii State Legislature has been variable and since FY09 there have not been enough funds to sustain a research program. Between 2005 and 2008 $2.1 million dollars were allocated to research and technology providers. In every case a 1:1 match between HISC funds and non-state funds has been required. In 2008 more than $2.8 million of proposals were received and 15 proposals were selected for funding totaling $780,000.

Grants are competitive and available to anyone through a public request for proposal process managed by the HISC administering agency Department of Land and Natural Resources. The best proposals are selected after review by staff from all HISC member agencies and selected experts.

Research Grants:

Upcoming & Past Meetings

TBD, 2020 – Agenda 

December 4, 2019 – Agenda & Notes

July 23, 2019 – Agenda & Notes 

November 9, 2018 – Agenda & Notes

June 22, 2018 – Agenda & Notes  

March 9, 2018 – Agenda & Notes

September 20, 2017 – Agenda & Notes

February 22, 2017 – Agenda & Notes

November 21, 2016 – Agenda & Notes 

May 12, 2016 – Agenda | Notes 

January 29, 2016 – Agenda | Notes 

November 6, 2015 – Agenda | Notes 

August 28, 2015 – Agenda | Notes

July 23, 2008 – Agenda | Draft minutes

March 3, 2008 – Agenda | Draft minutes