The Team

Here we introduce you to the members of the CircA team and their specific fields of interest.

Project leader

Prof. Jørgen Berge

Completed his PhD at the University of Tromsø in 2000. His main scientific focus centres on two topics; ecosystem responses to climate change and the biological processed during the polar night. Currently he is a professor at the University of Tromsø and an adjunct professor at UNIS (Svalbard).








Paul Renaud

Paul is an ecologist studying benthic and hyperbenthic communities, ecosystem processes, coupling of pelagic and benthic systems, and impacts of climate change. In the CircA project he leads WP3 investigating the ecosystem consequences of DVM. He is a Senior Researcher at Akvaplan-niva (Tromsø, Norway), and an adjunct professor at UNIS (Svalbard).




Julie Cornelius Grenvald

Julie is a PhD student at The University Centre in Svalbard (UNIS) and The University of Tromsø (UiT). The main focus of her PhD thesis is to characterize the zooplankton species performing diel vertical migration (DVM) in the polar night but also to identify the feeding patterns of the winter active migrants. In the field Julie combines various net hauls with acoustics from ADCPs attached to moorings, and in the lab Julie uses genetics to determine the gut contents of the most abundant and active zooplankton species.  







Gérald Darnis

Gérald joined the CircA team in 2013 after completing his PhD in Oceanography at Université Laval, Québec, Canada. The main focus of his doctoral research was on Arctic zooplankton seasonal migration and the importance of this process for the biogeochemical flux of carbon, mainly through active transport to the deep ocean. This time, as a postdoctoral fellow in the CircA project, he will use his expertise in Arctic zooplankton ecology to determine the role of diel vertical migration (DVM) in the functioning of the biological pump of Arctic fjord/shelf ecosystems. He is presently based at the Akvaplan-niva headquarters at the Fram center in Tromsø, Norway.



Geir Johnsen

Geir is a professor in marine biology at NTNU and adjunct professor at UNIS. He works with all sorts of underwater instruments, with main focus on a variety of optical measurements and algae pigments. 











Øystein Varpe

Øystein is an ecologist particularly interested in evolutionary and seasonal ecology. His main scientific focus is on how seasonality shapes ecological processes and evolutionary adaptations, topics particularly relevant in the high-latitude ecosystems of the Arctic. Central topics in Øystein's work include life history theory, phenology, behavioral ecology and trophic interactions. He uses statistical analyses of data as well as mathematical models and simulations. In the Circa project he leads work package 4: Pan Arctic perspective and global impacts. More about Øystein's work at:





Colin Griffith

My interests lie in tidal dynamics, extreme statistics, scientific moorings, cruise based observations and using AUVs to measure the ocean.  I am a member of the Department of Physics, Sea Ice and Technology and a prolific user of the research vessels at SAMS and elsewhere.










Finlo Cottier

My main scientific interests relate to the oceans and seas of the Arctic and the Antarctic. The main areas of my research involve the shallow, coastal seas of the Arctic, particularly in the waters around Svalbard and Greenland. My primary research interests are in physical oceanography but I'm also interested in the multi-disciplinary view of high-latitude seas. 










Kim Last

I am interested in the effects of human activities on marine organisms at the physiological and behavioural level particularly with a focus on sediments. Underlying my work is a fascination of clock biology i.e. how animals tell the time. Over the last 15 years I have worked on various worms, crustaceans and fish. I am a 'practical' scientist and enjoy answering difficult scientific questions by developing new technologies.








Laura Hobbs

I am a PhD student at the Scottish Association for Marine Science (UK). My role in the Circa project is to determine the environmental factors responsible for the existence of Diel Vertical Migration (DVM) in the Arctic. I am looking into a large set of ADCP data from many stations covering the whole Arctic and will be determining the influence of changing environments such as daylight, sea ice and currents and their effect on DVM. I have also played a part in installing some short term moorings of ADCPs along with net samples, so we can look at some high resolution data and begin to understand the more specific timings of DVM and identify the species that responsible for its existence.






Daniel Vogedes


Daniel is employed by UiT The Arctic University of Norway as a technician in the Marine Night project and by UNIS for CLEOPATRA II for which he joins as field assistant, maintains equipment and is responsible for data collection and web page administration. He has also a commercial divers licence and Norwegian motorboat certificate. He recently finished his PhD at UNIS/UiT on the role of Calanus in the Arctic marine ecosyst em. In addition to his job in Marine Night and CLEOPATRA, he holds at temporary 20% position as field technician in the biology department at UNIS.


Project leader and responsible for the content of the CircA page: Jørgen Berge

The Mare Incognitum projects are members of the ARCTOS research network

The Mare Incognitum web pages are maintained by Marine Night technician Daniel Vogedes, UiT.

The content is provided by the projects, for comments please check the project pages and contact the project leader.