The Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) has two PhD opportunities in plankton research.
PhD 1: Global Change Impacts on Plankton dynamics
Global change processes have had strong impacts on coastal seas, especially the North Sea.The aim of this project is to develop and test indicators of these processes based on zooplankton, using new observations as well as existing time series. Candidates should have a masters or equivalent in Aquatic Sciences, and a strong background in computational biology.
PhD 2: Plankton Ecology
In phytoplankton, as the availability of light and nutrients fluctuate, there is variation in the nutrient stoichiometry of the algae. This variation is further influenced by growth rates, which culminates in most cases in the fact that fast growth is linked with a certain optimal nutrient content of the algae (less variation at higher growth rate), whereas slow growing algae can have a large array of different nutrient compositions. This PhD will investigate variation in population growth rate in microalgae, link this to intra-population variation in nutrient stoichiometry, and investigate the effect of these growth rate-induced variations in cell nutrient quota on growth and dynamics of predators.