In the field of climate research, the last interglacial period, which occurred between about 128,000 and 116,000 years ago, is often used for comparison to present conditions. This was the last time in the Earth’s history that the climate was warmer than in preindustrial times. Both sea level and temperatures were higher than today, and the ice sheets were smaller. How will temperatures, sea level, and the extent of ice sheets change in the future? Scientists, including Alessio Rovere, believe that the answers lie in understanding the conditions during the last interglacial – and their significance.
Goal: Better understanding of coastal processes
“In this project we want to use a variety of multidisciplinary methods to study sea level, its fluctuations, and extreme waves during the last interglacial,” explains Alessio Rovere. He wants to apply the grant money toward recruiting outstanding young scientists to create a reliable global database of sea level and wave proxies for the last interglacial, and to survey new field areas with advanced modelling and measurement techniques.
“The results of this project,” Alessio Rovere is confident, “will contribute to a better understanding of coastal processes under somewhat warmer climate conditions. I am honored that the ERC considered my work for this prestigious award.” He also views the ERC Starting Grant as an indication of the relevance of his work in recent years.
Since 2014 Rovere has been the leader of the bridge group “Sea Level and Coastal Changes” between MARUM, Center for Marine Environmental Sciences at the University of Bremen, and the Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research (ZMT). The WARMCOASTS Project, which will now be funded by the European Research Council, is based at the University of Bremen and is the result of work by this group. After studying and earning his PhD at the University of Genoa (Italy), Alessio Rovere initially worked at the Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University (USA) and subsequently moved to MARUM.
About the ERC Starting Grant
This year, the ERC Starting Grant, for which 3170 applications were submitted from throughout Europe, was awarded to 403 young top researchers. The European Research Council awarded a total of 603 million Euros to the scientists. The objective of the awards is to enable the recipients to independently realize their own research goals with the help of their teams. Within a time frame of five years, pure basic research is supported at a maximum level of 1.5 million Euros per award. “Funding through an ERC Starting Grant highlights not only the outstanding expertise of the person distinguished by the award, but also the attractive scientific environment of marine sciences in Bremen,” says Prof. Dr. Michael Schulz, director of MARUM. Of the 20 total ERC grants awarded to researchers at the University of Bremen since establishment of the ERC, seven have been bestowed on marine scientists.
Dr. Alessio Rovere
Telephone: 0049 421-218 65771
MARUM Public Relations Team
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Using state-of-the-art methods and through participation in international projects, MARUM investigates the role of the ocean in the Earth’s system, particularly with respect to global change. It quantifies the interactions between geological and biological processes in the ocean and contributes to the sustainable use of the oceans. MARUM comprises the DFG Research Centre and the Excellence Cluster “The Oceans in the Earth System”.