Doctoral Programme on Marine Ecosystem Health and Conservation
 General information on the programme

Holger Auel

Personal details

Title:PD Dr.
Institute:Universität Bremen
Phone:+49 (0)421 218-9566
Website:Click here

Summary of CV:

PD Dr. Holger Auel has more than 15 years of experience in biological oceanography, marine biology and planktology. He holds a Ph.D. degree in biological oceanography from the University of Kiel and the venia legendi for marine biology at the University of Bremen. His research focuses on the ecology and ecophysiology of zooplankton and its role as trophic link in marine food webs and cryo-pelagic-benthic coupling processes. He took part in 20 ship-based expeditions and is an expert both, for experimental studies with planktonic organisms at sea, and for the analysis and quantification of dietary spectra and trophic levels by trophic biomarkers (fatty acids, stable isotopes). In total, he has published 28 scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals and textbooks.

Experience Higher education:

PD Dr. Auel is a dedicated teacher of under-graduate and graduate students at Bremen University and he co-ordinates the activities of Bremen University in the international graduate programmes ERASMUS MUNDUS joint doctoral programme in Marine Ecosystem Health and Conservation (MARES), ERASMUS MUNDUS M.Sc. programme in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation (EMBC) and POMOR M.Sc. programme in Applied Polar and Marine Research. Several times he worked as a guest lecturer for POMOR at the University of St. Petersburg in Russia. In addition, Dr. Auel organises the international M.Sc. programme Marine Biology at Bremen University and is board member for the M.Sc. programme in International Studies in Aquatic Tropical Ecology (ISATEC), jointly offered by Bremen University and the Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Ecology (ZMT).

Participation in Projects:

  • GENUS – Geochemistry and Ecology of the Namibian Upwelling Shelf (2009 to 2012): international research project funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) with international partners in Namibia (NatMIRC Swakopmund) and South Africa (Marine and Coastal Management, Cape Town)
  • CMarZ – Census of Marine Zooplankton: international research initiative to identify and record marine zooplankton biodiversity in the context of the Census of Marine Life (CoML). Close co-operation with Prof. Sigrid Schiel at AWI and Prof. Ann Bucklin, University of Connecticut, USA. Joint research cruise onboard RV Polarstern from Bremerhaven to Cape Town involving taxonomists, zooplankton ecologists and experts in molecular genetics in order to identify and barcode deep-sea zooplankton throughout the Atlantic Ocean.

  • ERASMUS MUNDUS M.Sc. programme in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation (EMBC): Representative of Bremen University in the EMBC Management Board, local contact and responsible person for all issues related to the EMBC programme in Bremen.
  • International M.Sc. programme for Applied Polar and Marine Sciences (POMOR; joint venture between the University of St. Petersburg, Russia, and several German universities): Co-ordinator of the biological module of POMOR and lecturer at the University of St. Petersburg in 2003, 2005 and 2008.
  • M.Sc. programme in International Studies in Aquatic Tropical Ecology (ISATEC): Lecturer and member of the organizational board for the last 12 years.
  • M.Sc. programme in Marine Biology: Lecturer and executive officer in the co-ordinating secretariat.


  • Ekau W, Auel H, Pörtner H-O, Gilbert D (2010) Impacts of hypoxia on the structure and processes in pelagic communities (zooplankton, macro-invertebrates and fish). Biogeosciences 7:1669-1699
  • Laakmann S, Kochzius M, Auel H (2009) Ecological niches of Arctic deep-sea copepods: Vertical partitioning, dietary preferences and different trophic levels minimize inter-specific competition. Deep-Sea Res I 56:741-756
  • Laakmann S, Stumpp M, Auel H (2009) Vertical distribution and dietary preferences of deep-sea copepods (Euchaetidae and Aetideidae; Calanoida) in the vicinity of the Antarctic Polar Front. Polar Biol 32:679-689
  • Auel H, Verheye HM (2007) Hypoxia tolerance in the copepod Calanoides carinatus and the effect of the intermediate oxygen minimum layer on copepod vertical distribution in the northern Benguela upwelling system and Angola-Benguela Front. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 352:234-243
  • Auel H, Hagen W, Schiel S (2009) Size does matter – In the sea of giants and dwarfs. In: Hempel, I., Hempel, G. (eds.) Biological Studies in Polar Oceans: Exploration of Life in Icy Waters. Wirtschaftsvlg. Nordwest, pp. 93-98

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