I am a postdoctoral researcher working with Francesco Pomati at Eawag, the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology. My research interests lie in community and population ecology. I seek to understand how patterns in community composition and species' evolution are shaped by the environment and evolutionary constraints, which jointly determine optimal competitive strategies. Understanding communities from the perspective of strategies, or functional traits, allows us to predict what they will look like under completely novel conditions. With major environmental changes under way, I believe that this is the most promising approach to understand what the future will look like.
To this end, I study how phytoplankton functional traits change across space and time - from the Arctic to the Antarctic, and from hour to hour in a nearby lake. Using a perspective based on resource competition theory, I try to explain patterns in trait change with a combination of experiments and mathematical modelling, and explore their implications for a changing environment.