Welcome to GSOCalendar of EventsDirectionsDirectoryContactAlumniSupport GSOGSO Advisory CouncilGSO InfoGSO Profile
GSO Academics
Faculty & ScientistsAcademic ProgramsApplyStudent LifeCurrent StudentsSURFOSeminarsFor Students
GSO Research
Faculty & Scientist SearchFaculty & ScientistsResearch LaboratoriesResearch FacilitiesAnalytical ServicesPell Marine Science Library
RV Endeavor
Where is Endeavor Now?Marine OperationsRI Endeavor ProgramRI Teacher At Sea
Narragansett Bay Campus
Institutes, Centers and OfficesAffiliates, Partners, and Memberships
GSO Outreach
GSO Outreach ProgramsGSO in the MediaGSO at the 2012 Ocean Sciences MeetingGSO at the 2014 Ocean Sciences MeetingGSO at the AGU Fall 2012 MeetingGSO at the AGU Fall 2013 MeetingStudio Blue
AlumniAwards & HonorsFacilitiesFacultyGraduate StudentsOutreachRV EndeavorResearchSpecial Events
President's Message Map and Directions Admission Faculty and Staff Campus Master Plan
Kingston Campus Feinstein Providence Campus Narragansett Bay Campus W. Alton Jones Campus
Colleges, Schools, and Departments Course Schedules and Catalog Graduate School Summer Program Academic Calendars and Exam Schedules Enrollment Services
Division of Research and Economic Development Outreach Programs Graduate School University Libraries Marine and Environmental Programs
Team Sports at GoRhody.com Recreation Ryan Center
Events Calendar News Releases The Good 5¢ Cigar inAdvance@URI QUADangles

Profile Page

Robert D. Kenney
Assoc. Marine Research Scientist
Room 5, Marine Building
(401) 874-6664

Educational Background

Ph.D., Biological Oceanography
B.S., Natural Resources/Aquatic Science
University of Rhode Island
Cornell University

Areas of Specialization


Dr. Bob Kenney's research interests include the ecology, behavior, and conservation of marine vertebrates, especially mammals and turtles; management of endangered species; and the effects of natural and anthropogenic environmental changes on marine food chains and apex predators. His main research is on the North Atlantic right whale, the world's most endangered whale species, as part of a long-term cooperative project involving a number of institutions in the eastern United States and Canada. He is also involved in several environmental impact assessment projects for the Navy and other agencies. He also has a non-professional research interest in early New England history and genealogy.


Bob Kenney teaches summer courses at Cornell University's Shoals Marine Lab (marine vertebrates, wildlife forensic science) and has taught a variety of courses at URI (biology of marine mammals, vertebrate biology, ecology, behavior, oceanography, and botany).


Bob Kenney serves on the Atlantic Scientific Review Group, the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Team, the Boston Harbor Outfall Monitoring Science Advisory Panel, and several other regional advisory bodies, and on the boards of the North Atlantic Right Whale Consortium, Rhode Island Natural History Survey, Friends of the National Wildlife Refuges of Rhode Island, and Kimball Wildlife Refuge. He lectures regularly through the URI Speakers Bureau (http://www.uri.edu/news/speakers/) and leads frequent birding and natural history walks for the Audubon Society of Rhode Island.


Tara S. Stevens
C. T. Harry
George O. Klein
Melissa R. Patrician
Cheryl L. Schroeder
Jessica A. Ward


Kenney, R.D., and K.J. Vigness-Raposa. 2010. Marine Mammals and Sea Turtles of Narragansett Bay, Block Island Sound, Rhode Island Sound, and Nearby Waters: An Analysis of Existing Data for the Rhode Island Ocean Special Area Management Plan. Final Technical Report to the Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources and Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council. University of Rhode Island, Graduate School of Oceanography, Narragansett, RI. 340 pp.

Kenney, R.D. 2009. Right whales Eubalaena glacialis, E. japonica, and E. australis. Pp. 962-972 in: W.F. Perrin, B. W├╝rsig, and H.G.M. Thewissen, eds. Encyclopedia of Marine Mammals, second edition. Academic Press, San Diego, CA.

Pershing, A.J., N.R. Record, B.C. Monger, C.A. Mayo, M.W. Brown, T.V.N. Cole, R.D. Kenney, D.E. Pendleton, and L.A. Woodard. 2009. Model-based predictions of right whale distributions in the Gulf of Maine. Marine Ecology Progress Series 378: 245-257.

Vanderlaan, A.S.M., C.T. Taggart, A.R. Serdynska, R.D. Kenney, and M.W. Brown. 2008. Reducing the risk of lethal encounters: vessels and right whales in the Bay of Fundy and on the Scotian Shelf. Endangered Species Research 4: 283-297.

Kenney, R.D. 2007. Right whales and climate change: Facing the prospect of a greenhouse future. Pp. 436-459 in: S.D. Kraus and R.M. Rolland (eds). The Urban Whale: North Atlantic Right Whales at the Crossroads. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA.

Kraus, S.D., M.W. Brown, H. Caswell, C.W. Clark, M. Fujiwara, P.K. Hamilton, R.D. Kenney, A.R. Knowlton, S. Landry, C.A. Mayo, W.A. McLellan, M.J. Moore, D.P. Nowacek, D.A. Pabst, A.J. Read, and R.M. Rolland. 2005. North Atlantic right whales in crisis. Science 309: 561-562.

       [For reprints: (http://www.gso.uri.edu/~rkenney/reprints/)]


"Predicting the Effects of Climate Change on North Atlantic Right Whales and Other Marine Mammals," Still Stranding After All These Years: Northeast Regional Stranding Conference 2008 (invited keynote address), Mystic Aquarium & Institute for Exploration and Cape Code Stranding Network/International Fund for Animal Welfare, Warwick, Rhode Island, April 2008.

"What's Wrong With the Right Whale?" Boston University Marine Program Seminar, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts, February 2008.

"Are Gulf of Maine Right Whales Approaching Carrying Capacity?" 17th Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals (poster), Society for Marine Mammalogy, Cape Town, South Africa, December 2007.

"Is Global Warming Impacting North Atlantic Right Whales?” 2007 Lowell Lecture Series, New England Aquarium, Boston, Massachusetts, May 2007. (http://forum.wgbh.org/wgbh/forum.php?lecture_id=3572)

"The History of North Atlantic Whaling," Portsmouth Historical Society, Portsmouth, Rhode Island, May 2007.


Member for
7 years 2 weeks