Theoretical Ecology Group

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See also Interviews with some of our previous candidates.

Marie Danielsen
MSc 2017
Thesis title: Effects of perceived predation risk on extra-pair mating in blue tits (Cyanistes caeruleus).
Supervisors: Adéle Mennerat, Sigrunn Eliassen, and Christian Jørgensen.
[ open access pdf ]

Lars Kristian Landsrød
MSc 2017
Thesis title: Decision-making in a proximate model framework: How behaviour flexibility is generated by arousal and attention. Supervisors: Sergey Budaev and Sigrunn Eliassen.
[ open access pdf ]

Judy Jinn
Visiting PhD Student 2015-2016
Judy was visiting from University of California Berkeley, USA, as part of her PhD research. Here she worked with Jarl Giske and Sigrunn Eliassen.

Randi Elisabeth Åsly
MSc 2016
Thesis title: Sammenhengen mellom sidefarskap og samarbeid i fuglenabolag av ulik størrelse [In Norwegian].
Supervisors: Sigrunn Eliassen and Christian Jørgensen.

Thomas Njerve Olsen
MSc 2016
Thesis title: En Killing the Winner studie av visuelle og taktile organismer i Svartehavet [In Norwegian].
Supervisors: Anders F. Opdal and Dag L. Aksnes.
[ open access pdf ]

Rebecca E. Holt
PhD 2011-2015
Thesis title: : Climate-induced evolution of the behaviour and life-history strategies of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua). Supervisors: Christian Jørgensen and Øyvind Fiksen.
Rebecca is now postdoc at Griffith University Gold Coast in Australia, where she is modelling connectivity in coastal marine ecosystems.

Daniel Einarsen Sellæg
MSc 2015
Thesis title: Inferring female extra-pair mating behaviour from observed patterns of extra-pair paternity with a process-based model.
Supervisors: Sigrunn Eliassen and Christian Jørgensen.
[ open access pdf ]

Simon Miljeteig
MSc 2015
Thesis title: Neighborhood effects of extra-pair mating on female fitness: testing model predictions on data from blue tits (Parus caeruleus).
Supervisor: Adéle Mennerat, Sigrunn Eliassen, and Christian Jørgensen.

Fabian Zimmermann
PhD 2009-2011 and PostDoc 2011-2015
Thesis title: The value of size: Bioeconomic consequences of size-dependent pricing and fishing-induced evolution. Supervisors: Mikko Heino (UiB), Stein Ivar Steinshamn (NHH), and Christian Jørgensen
Fabian is PostDoc at the Institute of Marine Research, Bergen,

Selina Våge
PhD 2012-2014
Thesis title: Pelagic microbial food web organization. Extending the theory for structure and diversity generating mechanisms based on life strategy trade-offs.
Supervisors: Frede Thingstad and Jarl Giske
Selina is Postdoc at the Research Group in Marine Microbiology at BIO.

Perdana Karim Prihartato
Cosupervised PhD from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, Saudia Arabia, 2014
Thesis title: Vertical distribution of dielly migrating mesopelagic fish in respect to nocturnal lights.
Supervisors: Stein Kaartvedt (KAUST) and Jarl Giske.

Bjørn Snorre Andersen
MSc 2014
Thesis title: Effects of genetic complexity and time resolution in an individual-based model of mesopelagic fish with hunger and fear.
Supervisor: Jarl Giske.
[ open access pdf ]

Eirik Norheim
MSc 2014
Thesis title: Distribution of mesopelagic scattering layer (MSL) in relation to the physical environment in the Norwegian Sea.
Supervisor: Dag L. Aksnes.
[ open access pdf ]

Rune Rosland
Associate professor until 2013
Rune had a long career in our group, starting out with behavioural models for mesopelagic fish during his PhD and later turning towards 3D biogeochemical models and bioenergetics of bivalves. In 2013 he decided to start working at a high school closer to home, and does as much good for the students there as he did for students while he was at UiB.

Jan Heuschele
Visitng researcher 2010-2013
Jan uses experimental and modeling studies to explore the influence of the biotic and abiotic environment on sexual selection in marine copepods and its potential feedback on population dynamics. Sexual selection in plankton is a fairly unexplored field, but several studies report courtship dances and other behaviors that resemble sexually selected behaviors of higher organisms.

Marco Castellani
Researcher 2010-2012
Marco worked with traits-based models for marine ecology on the TBECO project led by Øyvind Fiksen. Marco then held a researcher position at the Institute of Marine Research in Bergen before he became lecturer at the University of Birmingham. Throughout his period in Bergen, Marco also maintained active research on the Bees Algorithm.

Nicolas Dupont
PhD 2007-2010 and postdoc 2010-2012
Thesis title: Water clarity as a forcing factor of marine ecosystems. Modelling and data analysis of zooplankton vertical distribution.
Supervisor: Dag L. Aksnes.
Nicolas is researcher in the Plankton Group at the Institute of Marine Research, Bergen.

Agurtzane Urtizberea
PhD 2006-2009 and Researcher 2009-2011
Thesis title: From environment to survival. Foraging and bioenergetic models of anchovy and tuna larvae. Supervisor: Øyvind Fiksen.
Agurtzane is researcher in a technology center of marine and food research in the Basque Country, Azti-Tecnalia, working mainly on the development and applications of aBio-Economic Impact Assessment Model (FLBEIA).

Stian Indrevåg
MSc 2010
Thesis title: : Klimavariasjon eller fiske: Hvorfor silda kollapset [In Norwegian]. Supervisor: Øyvind Fiksen.

Stephanie Kramer-Schadt
Marie Curie Postdoc 2007-2009
Stephanie is researcher at Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research, Berlin, Germany.

Tian Tian
MSc 2008
Thesis title: Estimating larval fish growth under size-dependent mortality – a numerical estimate of bias. Supervisor: Øyvind Fiksen.
[ open access pdf ]

Espen Strand
PhD, PostDoc, and Researcher 2000-2008
Thesis title: Adaptive models of vertical migration in fish.
Supervisors: Jarl Giske and Geir Huse.
Espen is researcher in the plankton group at the Institute of Marine Research, Bergen, working mostly with krill and marine ecosystem modelling.

Trond Kristiansen
PhD 2003-2007
Thesis title: Modeling early life history of cod.
Supervisor: Øyvind Fiksen
Trond is researcher at the Institute of Marine Research, Bergen, working with links between oceanography and fish larval ecology. Updated info about Trond can always be found at

Øystein Varpe
PhD 2003-2007
Thesis title: Life history adaptations to seasonality. Supervisor: Øyvind Fiksen
Øystein is Associate Professor at the University Centre in Svalbard. Other links: Google Scholar.

Shahaama Sattar
MSc 2006
Thesis title: Optimal sex allocation in groupers: do fisheries change sex ratios? Supervisors: Christian Jørgensen and Øyvind Fiksen.

Thomas Torgersen
Postdoc 2002-2006
Thomas was senior scientist in the Animal Welfare research group at the Institute of Marine Research until he passed away far too early in May 2018.

Frode Vikebø
PhD 2001-2005
Thesis title: The impact of climate on early stages of Arcto-Norwegian cod – a model approach. Supervisor in TEG: Øyvind Fiksen
Frode is senior scientis in Oceanography at the Institute of Marine Research, Bergen, and head of their research programme on processes and human impacts.

Christofer Troedsson
PhD 2002-2005
Thesis title: Opportunistic growth and reproductive allotment in the filter-feeding Appenduclarian, Oikopleura dioica. Supervisor: Dag L. Aksnes.
Christofer is senior scientist and group leader of the Molecular Ecology Group of Uni Environment, a branch of Uni Research, Bergen.

Tom Sørnes
PhD 2001-2005
Thesis title: Visual or tactile zooplanktivores - structuring effects of the underwater visual environment. Supervisor: Dag L. Aksnes.
Tom is researcher and Environmental Coordinator at Statoil, Bergen.

Dorothy J. Dankel (Dorothy J. Housholder)
MSc 2004
Thesis title: Evaluation of harvest control rules: simple one-parameter versus complex multi-parameter strategies.
Supervisors: Mikko Heino and Øyvind Fiksen.
[ open access pdf ]

Ketil Eiane
PhD 1995-1999
Thesis title: Pelagic food webs: structuring effects of different environmental forcing. Supervisor: Dag L. Aksnes.
Ketil is Professor and vice dean at the Faculty of Bioscience and Aquaculture, University of Nordland, in Bodø, Norway.

Leif Nøttestad
PhD 1995-1999
Thesis title: Spatial aspects of life cycle adaptation and surival in adult herring. Supervisor: Jarl Giske.
Leif is senior scientist in the Pelagic Fish Group at the Institute of Marine Research, Bergen, and Adjunct Professor at Department of Biology, UiB.

Geir Huse
PhD 1994-1998
Thesis title: Life history strategies and spatial dynamics of the Barents Sea capelin (Mallotus villosus). Supervisor: Jarl Giske.
Geir is currently research director at the the Institute of Marine Research, Bergen.

Anne Christine Utne-Palm
PhD 1992-1995
Thesis title: Experimental investigations of habitat choice in fish.
Supervisor: Dag L. Aksnes.
Anne Christine is now senior scientist in the Fish Capture research group at the Institute of Marine Research, Bergen.

Beatriz M. Balino
PhD 1992-1996
Thesis title: Eutrophication of the North Sea, 1980-1990: An evaluation of anthropogenic nutrient inputs using a 2D phytoplankton production model.
Supervisor: Dag L. Aksnes.
Beatriz is now national coordinator of the Norwegian Marine University Consortium (NMU).



Dag L. Aksnes
Sergey Budaev
PhD Student
Ryan J. Dillon
Associate Professor
Sigrunn Eliassen
PhD student
Johanna Fall
Group Leader, Professor
Øyvind Fiksen
PhD Student
Nadia Fouzai
Jarl Giske
PhD Student
Laura Hildesheim
PhD Student
Camilla Håkonsrud Jensen
Christian Jørgensen
PhD Student
Tom J. Langbehn
Christian Lindemann
PhD Student
Gabriella Ljungström
Adjunct Professor
Marc Mangel
Adéle Mennerat
Anders F. Opdal
PhD student
Nicolas J. I. Rodriguez
PhD Student
Jacqueline Weidner
PhD Student
Johanna Myrseth Aarflot