Edinburgh Research Explorer
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Willingness to take PhD students: Yes

Current Research Interests


I examine the impact of climate change and pollutants on marine organisms and ecosystems, with particular focus on tropical and cold-water coral reefs. I explore how Past events have impacted upon marine ecosystems and organisms, examine how organisms have adapted to survive in a wide variety of Present day systems, and use aquaria epxeriments to predict how Future projected changes and pollution will impact organism fitness.    


I studied Marine and Environmental Biology at the University of St. Andrews before taking a PhD at the University of Essex examing acclimation and adaptations of corals across environmental gradients. In 2009, I went to the University of Delaware (USA) to research harmful algal bloom photophysiology in a variety of environments, and mechanisms underlying tropical coral bleaching. Following that, I moved to Heriot-Watt University to conduct the first long-term experiments on cold-water corals in a changing ocean. My NERC Fellowship examined the impact of climate change in tropical and cold-water corals, and my fieldwork throughout my career has included expeditions from the UK and Norway for cold-water corals, to tropical desitnations such as Indonesia and the Maldives.

I was lead editor of a United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity report on ocean acidification, and am on the steering group for the MASTS Dynamics and Properties of Marine Systems theme.

Research outputs

  1. Chapter 5: Changing Ocean, Marine Ecosystems, and Dependent Communities

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

  2. Multiple feeding strategies observed in the cold-water coral Lophelia pertusa

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  3. Reefs of the deep

    Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle

View all (42) »

Research activities & awards

  1. Public Talk at Scottish Seabird Centre

    Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesPublic Engagement – Festival/Exhibition

  2. Will we lose Scottish Reefs and how will we know?

    Activity: Academic talk or presentation typesOral presentation

  3. Will we lose the Scottish reefs of the deep? How will we know?

    Activity: Academic talk or presentation typesOral presentation

View all (14) »

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