Scientific Steering Committee welcomes four new members

  • April 2018

Four new members are joining the Southern Ocean Observing System Scientific Steering Committee this year, bringing with them expertise from the US, Argentina, South Africa and the UK.

We would like to thank everyone who nominated for the steering committee positions, it was a very competitive round and we were excited by the calibre of researchers interested in driving SOOS forward.

The addition of four new members is somewhat bittersweet, they will replace five of the inaugural SSC members, who have been integral in the development of SOOS since it was initiated in 2011.

Mike Meredith (BAS, UK) played a fundamental role in the development of SOOS, predominantly as the inaugural Physical Sciences Co-Chair and more recently as an SSC member. Similarly, Oscar Schofield, ex-Biological Sciences Co-Chair and current Biological Sciences Vice Chair, has been a driving force for SOOS. We thank both for their tireless efforts over the past six years.

Dan Costa, Mauricio Mata and Parli Bhaskar have likewise been core contributors, representing SOOS at international meetings, enhancing connections to external communities and driving the development of new initiatives. We thank those leaving the committee for the incredible energy, passion and time they put into their roles.

Looking forward, joining us are oceanographer Professor Eileen Hofmann, biological oceanographer Professor Irene Schloss, chemical oceanographer Dr Sarah Fawcett and Dr Andrew Meijers, a physical oceanographer.

Joining our Scientific Steering Committtee are Professor Eileen Hofmann, Professor Irene Schloss, Dr Sarah Fawcett and Dr Andrew Meijers. 

Professor Eileen Hofmann

Oceanographer at Old Dominion University in the USA.

Professor Eileen Hofmann's research expertise focuses on physical-biological interactions in marine ecosystems and mathematical modelling of marine ecosystems. She has an impressive list of community engagement and program leadership, and was central to the development of SOOS. Eileen brings a strategic oversight and vision that will be important for SOOS moving forward.

Professor Irene Schloss

Biological oceanographer at Instituto Antartico Argentino, Buenos Aires, Argentina, and the Centro Austral de Investigaciones Cientaficas (CADIC, CONICET), Ushuaia, Argentina. Irene’s core expertise is on the effects of climate change on polar ecosystems, including the coupling of physics and chemistry to understand polar plankton ecology. Her expertise in the West Antarctic Peninsula and strong international scientific ties will make an important contribution to SOOS, and her representation of Argentina is an important addition to our geographic connections.

Dr Sarah Fawcett

Chemical oceanographer at the University of Cape Town.

Sarah received her PhD from Princeton University on biogeochemical oceanography before taking up her current position as Lecturer at University of Cape Town, running the “Fawcett Lab” in Oceanography. Her research focuses on understanding the relationship between biogeochemical fluxes and primary productivity and the implications for global biogeochemical cycles. This expertise contributes across many SOOS Science Themes, and Sarah's involvement in South African Southern Ocean field campaigns will make an important contribution to the Weddell/Dronning Maud Land regional working group.

Dr Andrew Meijers

Physical oceanographer at the British Antarctic Survey, UK. 

Andrew's research focuses on Southern Ocean circulation and the heat and freshwater budget through analysis of a broad range of observational data. His research also includes improving coupled climate model analysis for the Southern Ocean. Andrew is currently co-leading the UK ORCHESTRA program, an involvement that will ensure a close connection for SOOS with this important field campaign. His links with the BAS and UK community more generally are a major asset for the Scientific Steering Committee.

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