About Me

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I am a benthic ecologist and biological oceanographer who aims to better understand the spatial distribution and function of benthic communities as a function of their environment. In polar ecosystems, I am particularly fascinated by the linkages between the surface and deep ocean, called pelagic-benthic coupling. Phytoplankton productivity in polar regions is vital to the survival of the benthos and is likely to change dramatically under future climate conditions. Thus, we must understand what the potential cascading effects of altered productivity may mean for the rich benthic communities of polar regions, and how they contribute to important functions like carbon cycling.  Though I have particular interest in polar ecosystems, I also aim to understand how environmental conditions besides productivity (e.g. currents, substrate type) constrain benthic biogeography, food webs, and carbon cycling within coastal and deep-sea ecosystems.

For a more in-depth look at my research, visit my Research page, check out my CV, Twitter, as well as Research Gate, or Google Scholar profiles for publications. Contact me directly via email (aziegler802@gmail.com) for more information.

In addition to research, I believe that science communication and community engagement are essential to improving ocean literacy  and stewardship. I have dedicated myself to providing STEM education opportunities through hands-on activities and virtual sessions via SkypeAScientist. I encourage everyone to form a connection with the ocean, especially the polar regions, and strive to improve STEM education particularly for young women and under-served communities.