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Doctor Anna Hickman

Dr Anna Hickman


Research interests

  • The role of marine phytoplankton in biogeochemical cycles
  • Phytoplankton ecology, primary production, photo physiology and bio-optics
  • Understanding the physical controls on biological processes and associated feedbacks

More research


My research focuses on marine phytoplankton, oceanic microbes that form the base of the marine food web and that generated half of the oxygen in the atmosphere. 

My work is highly interdisciplinary, encompassing biological, physical, and chemical oceanography and marine optics, and I use both observations and numerical modelling in my approach.

I am particularly interested in how phytoplankton growth and physiology are controlled by the physical environment. Much of my current research focuses on how light availability shapes phytoplankton biogeography and, in turn, how the community structure affects the surface ocean colour observed from satellites.

Specialties: Oceanography, phytoplankton, primary production, photophysiology, ecosystem modelling, biogeochemistry, marine optics, ecology