The Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) is a member of the Helmholtz Association (HGF) and funded by federal and state government. AWI focuses on polar and marine research in a variety of disciplines such as biology, oceanography, geology, geochemistry and geophysics thus allowing multidisciplinary approaches to scientific goals.

Master thesis: Zooplankton adaptation to climate change

In the division "Biosciences", section “Shelf Seas Systems Ecology” (Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research) we are looking for a Master student (Biology/Ecology/Physiology).
Zooplankton adaptation to climate change
Global change places organisms under enormous pressure by radically changing the environment in which they live. Those shifts in abiotic conditions induce physiological acclimatization and genetic adaptations in populations which dampens the influence of new environmental settings on population dynamics and allows species to persist.

This project will therefore investigate the effects of global change on zooplankton population dynamics and the associated evolutionary responses.
We hypothesise that (1) with increasing strength of abiotic changes the selective pressure will also increase which could in turn decrease the genetic diversity of populations over time. We also hypothesise that (2) populations could adapt to global change which should be seen during transplant experiments in the performance of different selection lines.
This project will therefore provide information on the consequences of global change for zooplankton demographic features, grazing pressure, and nutrient recycling, all of which largely influence community interactions and ecosystem functioning.

Further Information
The place of employment will be Helgoland.

Start: as soon as possible

You are interested?
Then please send us your application with Cover letter an CV (with all documents merged into one PDF file) by e-mail to: Dr. Cédric Meunier (

For further information please contact Dr. Cédric Meunier (