Diane Thompson

PhD, Geosciences, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, 2013
MA, Marine Biology, Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, FL, 2008
BS, Marine Biology, Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, FL, 2006
Title & Affiliation: 
Director of Marine Research, Biosphere 2, University of Arizona
Assistant Professor, Department of Geosciences, University of Arizona

My research bridges the fields of ecology, paleoecology, and paleoclimatology to investigate tropical climate change (past, present & future) and its impact on coral reef ecosystems.  This work spans a range of scales from local (e.g., reef-scale circulation) to global (e.g., climate variability and change) and capitalizes on a blend of field and laboratory, observational and modeling, and experimental and theoretical approaches.  In particular, my work investigates the role of a reef's historical exposure to stress in its resilience to future warming, and how this temperature history may be impacted by nudges to the global climate system (e.g. in response to volcanoes or climate change).  Aiming to improve our understanding of past ocean conditions we leverage nature's tropical historians, namely corals and lake sediment archives.  Ultimately, this work is motivated by the urgent need to identify & promote factors that contribute to coral-reef resilience under future global climate change.