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Dr Eileen Bresnan

E BresnanTelephone: +44 (0)131 244 2538

E-mail: Eileen.Bresnan@gov.scot

Address: Marine Laboratory, 375 Victoria Road, Aberdeen, AB11 9DB, Scotland, UK

Research Interests

I am very interested in phytoplankton ecology. I lead a group of four scientists working on different aspects of this in Scottish waters including phytoplankton community dymanics, harmful algal blooms (HABs), phytoplankton taxonomy and ocean acidification.

Most of my work is involved in generating long-term environmental time-series to describe the phytoplankton community and identify variability and changes around the Scottish coast. These long-term monitoring sites also act as sentinel sites for the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) and EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD).

I also co-ordinate the sampling and data quality of the Marine Scotland Science Coastal Ecosystem Monitoring Programme.


I collaborate with scientists across the UK, Europe, USA and Canada, notably those involved in ICES and MASTs plankton networks. Within the UK, I work closely with colleagues from other institutes developing plankton tools for the WFD and MSFD. I collaborate with UK HAB scientists on a number of national reporting initiatives and led the production of the UK Harmful Algal Bloom report card for the Marine Climate Change Impacts Partnership (MCCIP). I have close collaborations with a number of universities and am currently co-supervising four PhD students based at the Scottish Association for Marine Science, University of Aberdeen and Heriot-Watt University.

External Committees and Responsibilities

I am chair of the ICES Working Group on Harmful Algal Bloom Dynamics (ICES WGHABD) and a member of the ICES Working Group on Phytoplankton and Microbial Ecology (ICES PME). I represent the UK on the Intergovernmental Panel for Harmful Algal Blooms (IP-HAB). I sit on the Marine Plants Task Team for the WFD and the Healthy and Biodiverse Seas Evidence Group for the MSFD. I am an invited member of the expert steering committee for the BEQUALM international phytoplankton ring trail. I am a past member of the council for the International Society for the Study of Harmful Algae (ISSHA) and the British Phycological Society (BPS). I am a guest lecturer on the University of Aberdeen’s MSc in Marine Ecology and Ecosystem Management.

Most Recent Publications

  • Stern R., Amorim A.-L. and Bresnan E. (in press) Diversity and plastid types in Dinophysis acuminata complex (Dinophyceae) in Scottish waters. Harmful Algae
  • Bresnan E., Davidson K., Edwards M., Fernand L., Gowen R., Hall A., Kennington K., McKinney A., Milligan S., Raine R. and Silke J. (2013). Impacts of climate change on harmful algal blooms (HABs).  MCCIP Science Review 2013, 236-243, doi:10.14465/2013.arc24.236-243. http://www.mccip.org.uk/media/25433/2013arc_sciencereview_24_habs_final.pdf
  • Brown, L., E. Bresnan, K. Summerbell, and F. G. O'Neill. (2013). The influence of demersal trawl fishing gears on the resuspension of dinoflagellate cysts. Marine Pollution Bulletin 66 (1-2):17-24.
  • Tett, P., Gowen, R., Painting, S., Elliot, M., Forster, R., Mills, D., Bresnan, E., Capuzzo, E., Fernandes, T., Foden, J., Geider, R., Gilpin, L., Huxham, M., McQuatters-Gollop, A., Malcolm, S., Picart, S. S., Platt, T., Racault, M.-F., Sathyendranath, S., van der Molen, J. and Wilkinson, M. (2013). A framework for understanding marine ecosystem health. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 494, 1 – 27. http://www.int-res.com/articles/feature/m494p001.pdf

Publications List

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Title:Dr Eileen Bresnan
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