Keechy Akkerman

Loughborough University


Aquatic ecosystem response to changing ice margin dynamics of the Greenland ice sheet


Prof. John Anderson

Dr. David Ryves

PhD Summary

Temperatures have been increasing rapidly in western Greenland since ~2000 AD, causing dramatic changes in the Greenland ice sheet. It is projected that the subsequent increase in meltwater fluxes enhances the nutrient transport to the surrounding terrestrial and aquatic systems (lakes), altering their composition. In addition, direct warming will also affect the aquatic ecosystems by enhancing stratification and shortening the ice cover period, the consequences of which are still largely unknown. My PhD-research aims to gain more insight into these latter effects by focussing on the spatial and temporal variability of the aquatic ecosystem in lakes that have remained relatively uninfluenced by the enhanced nutrient transport.

What inspires you

Growing up as a city girl, all I wanted was to be a farmer when I grew up so that I could work with animals and spend a lot of time outside. Eventually my dreams developed into studying Biology, even though I haven’t given up on the farming dream entirely ;).

Previous activity

I did a bachelor’s in Biology and a master’s in Biogeology at Utrecht University

Why did you choose doctoral research?

During my years of study I became fascinated with past ecosystem variability, and continuing to study it in the form of Doctoral Research feels like I’ve turned my hobby into my work.

Why did you choose CENTA?

Being from The Netherlands I must say I was not familiar with the British PhD system (scholarships etc.), but so far I feel very lucky to be part of CENTA with the extra training days and placement opportunities.

Future plans

After my PhD it would be great if I could continue in research in the form of a post-doc, for which I think this PhD would be a great starting point.