PhD: Investigating the role of organic nutrient resources in controlling biodiversity and production in freshwater ecosystems
Location: Lancaster University
I graduated from Lancaster University with a BSc in Environmental Science. As an undergraduate, I focused most of my time on the study of freshwater environments and the numerous challenges threatening them. My enthusiasm for algae began with my dissertation in partnership with the Freshwater Biological Association and Ribble Rivers Trust. The project involved developing a citizen science method which examined benthic macroalgae in streams to evaluate the risk of eutrophication. The insight I gained into the issue of nutrient enrichment, and the commitment of researchers already working on the topic, motivated me to pursue further research opportunities on freshwater environments.
I am now a PhD student at Lancaster, working on a project investigating the role of organic nutrient resources in controlling biodiversity and production in freshwater ecosystems. Despite the increasing global concentrations of organic nutrients, their role in freshwater systems has been overlooked. It is critical that we improve our understanding of the role of organic nutrients for future management decisions. My research will primarily concentrate on the response of benthic algae to organic nutrients, which is currently under-studied. I am excited to explore these relationships by combining lab experiments with fieldwork based in the Lake District.