Dr Sarah Alvarez (née O’Dea)

Dr Sarah Alvarez (née O’Dea) Image

University of Gibraltar:

Research Programme Coordinator
Lecturers & Tutors
Natural Sciences & Environment

Research Background

Dr. Sarah Alvarez (née O’Dea) was awarded a PhD by the University of Southampton after successfully completing her studies at the School of Ocean and Earth Science. Her post-doctoral research was first based at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton, and then at the University of Bristol, where she was part of a team of scientists funded by the European Research Council to investigate past links in the ocean’s environment and ecology (PALEOGENIE,

Sarah is a part-time lecturer for MSc in Marine Science and Climate Change, an Honorary Research Fellow at the University College, London and the Micropalaeontological Society Nannofossil Group Chair.

Research Interests

Sarah specialises in using the fossil remains of calcifying marine plankton (coccolithophores and calcareous nannoplankton) to explore ecosystem and evolutionary response to past environmental perturbation and ocean acidification. Her approach integrates geological evidence with insights of the modern ocean to better understand the implications of ongoing environmental change. Her most recent research has focussed on the early Paleogene, and in particular the recovery of the ocean ecosystem following the end-Cretaceous mass extinction (~66 million years ago).

Selected Publications

Alvarez, S.A., Gibbs, S.J., Bown, P.R., Kim, H., Sheward, R.M., Ridgwell, A. Diversity decoupled from ecosystem function and resilience during mass extinction recovery. Nature doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1590-8 (2019).

O’Dea, S.A., Gibbs, S.J., Bown, P.R., Young, J.R., Poulton, A.J., Newsam, C., Wilson, P.A. Coccolithophore calcification response to past ocean acidification and climate change. Nature Communications 5, (2014).

Alvarez, S.A., Gibbs, S.J., Bown, P.R., Wilson, J.D., Ridgwell, A. Following the phytoplankton: Tracking ocean ecosystem recovery from the K/Pg mass extinction. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, Washington D.C., USA (2018).

Alvarez, S.A., Bown, P.R., Gibbs, S.J., Kim, H., Ridgwell, A. Re-building the ocean ecosystem after the K/Pg mass extinction event. Lyell Meeting 2018, Mass Extinctions: Understanding the World’s worst crises, The Geological Society, London (2018).

Alvarez, S.A., Bown, P.R., Gibbs, S.J., Ridgwell, A. The post-mass-extinction recovery of calcareous nannoplankton and the Paleogene emergence of new diversity, disparity and ecological strategies. Climatic and Biotic Events of the Paleogene, Snowbird Resort, Utah, U.S.A. (2017).

Full Publications List