My research

I am currently a PhD student at the University of Nottingham, funded by the NERC Envision DTP.

My PhD aims to increase of understanding of how root traits, mycorrhizal interactions and other belowground processes are altered with changes to environmental factors over time and space.

See my infographic here to see some of the ways in which climate change might impact Arctic ecosystems, especially vegetation and belowground dynamics.

Research Questions:

  • Are root functional traits (RFTs) affected by changing environmental variables?
  • Are changes in RFTs mediated by mycorrhizae?
  • Can we predict belowground responses from aboveground data/ remotely?
  • Are other processes (e.g. active layer thickness, decomposition, and nutrient availability) affected and how does this relate to RFT change?

To investigate these questions, I hope to use roots collected from cores at multiple arctic sites and through the installation and later collection of in growth cores (IGCs). The roots from these cores will be scanned and assess for mycorrhizal colonisation. I have conducted fieldwork this year in Greenland, placed some trial IGCs and taken samples in the Cairngorms, and I am currently processing these samples.

Research team / find out more

My project is very collaborative, and I’m proud to be part of a wonderful team of academics. Links to some of the projects I’m working in collaboration with are found below:

My PhD supervisors are Dr Franziska Schrodt and Dr Richard Field at the University of Nottingham.

My external supervisor, Dr Gabriela Schaepman-Strub, leads the precipitation experiment set up in Siberia, where I hope to be conducting fieldwork in the summer.

This years’ fieldwork was conducted in Greenland collaboration with Dr Signe Normand and the Vegetation Dynamics group at the University of Aarhus.

Trail cores in the Cairngorms were placed in collaboration with Dr Isla Myers Smith and Team Shrub at the University of Edinburgh.

My PhD also benefits from the support of Dr Colleen Iversen, Dr Verity Salmon and Dr Camille Defrenne at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.