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... PREFACE 2 SUMMARY 4 1 PROGRAM FOUNDATION 11 Legal Context for Establishing the Gulf Research Program 11 First Steps in Program Planning 13 Interpreting the Settlement Language 17 2 PROGRAM MISSION, GOALS, AND OBJECTIVES 23 Mission 23 Enhance Oil System Safety 24 Improve Understanding of Human Health–Environment Connections 27 Advance Understanding of the Gulf of Mexico as a Dynamic System 29 Program Objectives 31 3 STRATEGIES FOR LASTING BENEFIT 33 Long-Term, Cross-Boundary Perspective 33 Science to Advance Understanding 34 Science to Serve Community Needs 35 Synthesis and Integration 36 Coordination and Partnerships 38 Leadership and Capacity Building 39 4 INITIAL AND FUTURE ACTIVITIES 41 Initial 2015–2016 Activities 41 Next Steps for 2015–2020 45 Next Steps for Identifying Long-Term Initiatives 46 5 PROGRAM OPERATIONS 49 Scientific Integrity 49 Coordination and Communication 50 Planning and Evaluation 51 REFERENCES 55 Appendixes 57 A Advisory Group Biographies 57 B Charge to the Advisory Group 63 C Outreach Activities 64 D Other Funding Programs 66 Contents 1

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