Plankton Biodiversity Lab is based at the Tvärminne Zoological Station on the South-West coast of Finland.

If you are interested to join our research team as a Postdoc or PhD student, please contact us to discuss funding opportunities.

Aleksandra Lewandowska

Associate Professor, Group leader

In my research I focus on the impact of climate change on biodiversity in marine pelagic food webs. I am interested how biodiversity patterns and species interactions affect ecosystem productivity and elements cycling between trophic levels.

Aleksandra's Google Scholar profile

Aleksandra's Twitter: @planktola

Aleksandra's contact and research profile in the UH People Finder

Per Hedberg


My research revolves mainly around the impacts of environmental and climatic change on plankton ecology and the implications this has for species composition, carbon sequestration and the possibility of greenhouse gas emissions. The research is mainly experiment based on a micro- to mesocosm scale and focused both on single species as well as the whole community. Other research interests include benthic-pelagic coupling and nutritional aspects of environmental change, such as trophic interactions and species-specific fatty acid composition.

Iris Orizar

PhD student

My research interest is understanding the response of phytoplankton community to environmental changes. I am specifically interested how environmental changes affect phytoplankton interactions, community composition and ecological functions.
I am looking at the potential effects of salinity to the phytoplankton community using trait-based approach. I investigate traits distribution in the phytoplankton community at different salinity levels and to determine which groups are more likely to be benefitted by the freshening of the Baltic Sea and how the shift in phytoplankton composition will affect their ecological functions.

Iris' Twitter: @planktivore

Clio Hall

PhD student

My main research interests are in understanding the response of plankton food webs to environmental change and in the related development of sustainable marine management strategies. 

I am using a combination of mesocosm experiments and in-field measurements to gain insight into the mechanisms underlying changes in natural plankton communities. Specifically, I am investigating (1) how salinity change influences cyanobacteria growth and how this will impact higher trophic levels, (2) how salinity change influences plankton community composition and diversity, and (3) how the combined effect of temperature and salinity change influences food web interactions.

Clio's Twitter: @clio_bio

Catharina Uth

PhD student

My main research interests are in understanding the response of ecosystems to climate change and their contribution to the carbon cycle. I am interested in universal and specific traits of phytoplankton and crossing trophic levels.  My research focuses on the uptake and export of carbon (in the form of CO2 and CH4) by phytoplankton species and communities.  I am also interested in the effects of changes in phytoplankton community structure on the carbon cycle in coastal areas.

Catharina's Twitter: @catharinauth

Sonja Repetti

PhD student

I am an interdisciplinary algal researcher interested in the capacity of microalgae to respond and adapt to environmental change, as well as increasing public understanding and appreciation of algae.

In my doctoral research, I am growing microalgae at different salinities and studying how adjustment to these salinity changes affects cells, physically and genetically. I am also designing a survey to understand public attitudes and knowledge about algae, and aim to influence these by designing a communication exhibition. I want to produce more holistic understanding of microalgal responses to environmental change and of public responses to algae, which will illuminate the capacity of both marine ecosystems and human society to change at the rate required to survive human-induced climate change. 

Sonja's Twitter: @RepettiSonja

Sonja's website

Tjardo Stoffers

PhD student

My research focuses on the impact of global change on marine plankton communities. I am currently working on what drives changes in zooplankton communities over long time scales and how these changes eventually affect the carbon cycle due to altered respiration and excretion. I am also interested in testing new methods such as metabarcoding, eDNA metabarcoding and automated imaging to improve the traditional monitoring efforts.


Past lab members

Sonja Repetti, MSc student (2021)
Jonna Kangas, MSc student (2021)
Vilma Ihalainen, MSc student (2020)
Kianna Gallagher, Visiting MSc student (2020)
Justin Tierney, Visiting MSc student (2019)
Clio Hall, Visiting MSc student (2018)