Stefania Bianco wins the Okada-McIntyre Graduate Research Fellowship of the International Nannoplankton Association (INA)

Stefania Bianco has been awarded with the $2500 Okada-McIntyre Graduate Research Fellowship for 2023, offered by the International Nannoplankton Association (INA).

The Okada-McIntyre Graduate Research Fellowships honor Professors Dr. Hisatake Okada and Dr. Andrew McIntyre for their pioneering contributions to extant/recent nannoplankton research and INA, and are intended to support students pursuing advanced degrees in various aspects of ecological dynamics related to modern and recent calcareous nannoplankton:

Stefania is a PhD student at the University of Pavia (Italy), enrolled in the Sustainable Development and Climate Change National Program at the University School for Advanced Studies (IUSS, Pavia). Her research is conducted in collaboration with the National Institute of Oceanography and Applied Geophysics (OGS, Trieste - Italy) under the supervision of Claudia Lupi and Andrea Di Giulio of the University of Pavia and Manuela Bordiga of OGS.

The idea behind her project is to deepen on coccolithophore responses to future climate change/ocean acidification and their impact on the ocean carbon cycle by comparing data from the fossil record with those from culture experiments.

The Okada-McIntyre fellowship will allow Stefania to conduct further experiments on the target species Helicosphaera carteri, at OGS, under controlled CO2 culture conditions.

The data that will be collected will be used to clarify the tolerance of the species to the progressive increase in atmospheric CO2, to evaluate its contribution to the permanent stock of atmospheric carbon into the ocean and to clarify its ecological preferences, which are still the subject of debate.