The people at AZTI are our main asset to achieve the goals that we have set. AZTI is committed to the people in the organisation and in the growth of its human team, which is a reflection of its strength. A human team of over 240 professionals makes possible the growth of the organisation.

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Photo of  Naroa  Aldanondo
Naroa Aldanondo
Researcher AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMarine Ecosystems Functioning.

Research Interests: Marine ecology, fish biology, recruitment variability, population structure, small pelagic fish, early life stages, otolith.

Education Profile:
Ph.D., Biology, University of the Basque Country, 2010.
M.S., Biology, University of La Laguna, Spain 2005.
B.S., Marine Biology, University of La Laguna, Spain 2002.

Professional Profile:
2013-Present: Researcher, Marine Research Unit, AZTI.
2012-2013: Post-doctoral Fellowship, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (Saudi Arabia).
2007-2010: Researcher, Marine Research Unit, AZTI.
2005-2009: Pre-doctoral Fellowship (Basque Government).

Photo of  Laura  Alonso-Sáez
Laura Alonso-Sáez
Senior Researcher AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMolecular Ecology and Biotechnology.

PhD in Marine Sciences (2006), with specialization in Marine Microbial Ecology. My main research lines are the study of the diversity of marine microorganisms and their role in ecosystem functioning. Author of 38 publications in international peer-reviewed journals (receiving 1182 citations, h-index:18) mainly in the categories of Microbiology, Ecology, and Freshwater and Marine Biology. Expertise in a wide array of methodologies in Environmental Microbiology such as metabolic activity measurements, single-cell analysis, and molecular tools including high-throughput ?Omics? approaches. International experience in different European research groups including stays in Uppsala University (Sweden, Marie Curie IEF), the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg (Germany) and University of Leicester (UK, BES Research Grant). I am Review Editor in Frontiers in Aquatic Microbiology and referee in international journals and project evaluation agencies.

Photo of  Paula  Álvarez
Paula Álvarez
Principal Researcher AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMarine Ecosystems Functioning, Climate Change, Ecosystem Approach to Management,

Ph D in Biology in 1995 by the University of Basque Country. Incorporated at AZTI in 1996 and post-doc position in the Martin Ryan Institute (Galway, Ireland) in 1998 thanks to a Marie Curie Grant. She re-joined AZTI in 1999 working on fish larval ecology and Recruitment, in one hand, and direct assessment of mackerel and horse mackerel biomass applying Egg production methods in other hand. She participated in several international projects (FAIR, AIR, FP6) and lead national project. She has lead oceanographic surveys for more than 16 years. She chaired ICES WKMEGS from 2006-2008 being member since 1999. She is supervisor of many PHD and Master Students and author/co-author of 30 publications in international peer-reviewed journal.

Photo of  Eider  Andonegi
Eider Andonegi
Researcher AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMarine Ecosystems Functioning, Ecosystem Approach to Management, Conservation of Marine Ecosystems, Integrated Assessment of Living Resources, Climate Change.

Background: Marine Science, Ecosystem Research, Mathematical Modelling.
Almost 10 years of professional experience at AZTI mainly as a modeller working towards the implementation of the ecosystem approach and the integrative assessments and management of marine systems. Involved in more than 20 international and national projects and member of different international expert groups.
Author and reviewer of various publications in SCI-indexed journals, related to ecosystem ecology and the use of multispecies and ecosystem models for assessment of complex marine systems; also author of some scientific contributions in other fields such as the assessment and management of European hake, anchovy and eel and the effects of the Basque recreational fishery on some target fish stocks.
Ecosystem health assessment, spatially-explicit end-to-end modelling, integrated ecosystem assessment and marine spatial planning are among her current research interests.

Photo of  Amaia  Astarloa
Amaia Astarloa
PhD Student AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMarine Ecosystems Functioning, Ecosystem Approach to Management, Conservation of Marine Ecosystems, Climate Change.

Biologist and master in Oceanography and Marine Environmental Management. Currently, developing my PhD project about the role of environment and prey in driving marine predator distribution and abundance in the Bay of Biscay.

Photo of  Marina  Chifflet
Marina Chifflet
Researcher AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMarine Ecosystems Functioning, Climate Change, Ecosystem Approach to Management.

(Rimouski, Canada, 2002-2006) and Ifremer (Brest, France, 2006-2007). Her research focuses on the impacts of human activities and climate changes on the marine ecosystem, using coupled hydrodynamic – low-trophic-levels – high-trophic-levels models. Since 2007, she works in Azti-Tecnalia as researcher in the Marine Ecosystem Functioning Department, developing the hydrodynamic-biogeochemical modelling work, applied to the Bay of Biscay. Incorporating AZTI-Tecnalia, she won a Torres-Quevedo contract from the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation. She participates in several EU projects on development of ecosystem models (MEECE, REPRODUCE, FACTS, DEVOTES, MARS…).

Photo of  Guillem  Chust
Guillem Chust
Senior Researcher AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningClimate Change, Marine Ecosystems Functioning, Conservation of Marine Ecosystems, Environmental Impact and Quality, Operational Oceanography Systems.

PhD in Ecology (2002, University of Paul Sabatier, France).
Postdoc position at CNRS (France) in 2002-2004.
Since 2005, Senior Researcher at AZTI.
Competencies: marine ecology and climate change impacts in ocean and coastal ecosystems.
Author of 40 publications in SCI-indexed journals (H index: 14).
Editor of Frontiers of Marine Ecosystem Ecology.
Leader of competitive national projects and WPs of European projects (MEECE, Euro-Basin).
Relevant publications:
Chust et al. 2014. Biomass changes and trophic amplification of plankton in a warmer ocean. Global Change Biology. DOI: 10.1111/gcb.12562.
Chust et al. 2013. Latitudinal phytoplankton distribution and the neutral theory of biodiversity. Global Ecology and Biogeography 22: 531-543.
Valle et al. 2014. Projecting future distribution of the seagrass Zostera noltii under global warming and sea level rise. Biological conservation 170: 74-85.

Photo of  Unai  Cotano
Unai Cotano
Head of Research Area AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMarine Ecosystems Functioning, Integrated Assessment of Living Resources, Ecosystem Approach to Management.

Background: Marine Biology
Ecology of Marine Systems
Fish Biology
Recruitment processes and population dynamics

Unai Cotano has got a PhD in Biology by the University of the Basque Country. Currently, he has got a position as Head of a Research Area (Functioning of Marine Ecosystems Area). 15 year experience in the study of the factors which regulates the survival of the early life stages of pelagic fish population, their recruitment and the influence on population dynamics. He has participated in more than 20 papers published in international SCI journals (he has an h index of 10) and has got more than 50 contributions to national and international congresses. He has participated in several international expert groups in the framework of recruitment, dynamics and management of pelagic fish population at ICES. He has been the leader of near 20 research and consultancy projects. He has supervised one PhD student and is currently supervising 2 PhD students.

Photo of  Natalia  Díaz Arce
Natalia Díaz Arce
PhD Student AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMolecular ecology and biotechnology, Integrated assessment of living resources,Conservation of marine ecosystems

Biologist and MSc in marine environment and resources. Currently working in the development of high-throughput sequencing based
population genomic tools
to assess fish stock management and conservation as a PhD student at AZTI.

Photo of  Maite  Erauskin
Maite Erauskin
PhD Student AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningClimate Change, Observation and Data.
Photo of  Almudena  Fontán
Almudena Fontán
Senior Researcher AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningObservation and Data, Climate Change, Operational Oceanography, Environmental Impact and Quality.

She is a senior researcher of the Marine Research Division of AZTI since 2003. Fontan received a BSc in Marine Science (ULPGC), an MSc in Science and Marine Technologies (University of Cantabria), an MPhil in Physical Oceanography (National Centre of Oceanography, UK) and a PhD in Science and Technology (University of the Basque Country). Short-term postdoctoral research at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (University of California). Fontan’s work deals with air-sea interaction and hydrography with emphasis on their influence on marine ecosystems. She has participated in scientific and technical projects dealing with atmosphere-ocean interaction, hydrography, ocean climate and environmental monitoring in the Bay of Biscay. Her research interests also include data analysis methods in Physical Oceanography. Author and co-author of 26 scientific publications in international peer-reviewed journals and participation in over 60 international conferences. She is member of the ICES Working Group on Oceanic Hydrography.

Photo of  Isabel  García
Isabel García
PhD Student AZTI- Marine Ecosystems FunctioningConservation of marine ecosystems, Marine ecosystems functioning

BSc in Environmental Science (University of León) and MSc in Biodiversity and Conservation Biology (Pablo de Olavide University – CSIC). Currently PhD student funding by Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness. Now working on spatial ecological modelling and the identification and study of anthropogenic pressures to which seabirds and cetaceans may be exposed in order to identify potential areas of protection in the marine environment.

Photo of  Xabier  Irigoien
Xabier Irigoien
Scientific Director AZTI - BoardEcosystem Approach to Management, Climate Change, Conservation of Marine Ecosystems, Molecular Ecology and Biotechnology.

Since 1994 successively worked in “Instituto de Ciencias del Mar” (CSIC, Barcelona), “Plymouth Marine Laboratory” (NERC, Plymouth) and “Southampton Oceanography Center” (NERC, Southampton) and AZTI from 2002 to 2011 before joining King Abdullah University for Science and Technology (KAUST) in 2011. Head of the Biological Oceanography & living resources section in the Marine Research Division of AZTI foundation from 2004 to 2011.and Director of the Red Sea Research Center in KAUST from 2011 to 2016. Member of the editorial council of Journal Plankton Research, editorial board of Scientific Data, associate editor in Marine Biology and Frontiers in Marine Ecology.

Photo of  Anders  Lanzén
Anders Lanzén
Researcher AZTI- Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMolecular ecology and biotechnology, Climate change, Assessment of the marine environment health status

Anders Lanzén is an investigator in Marine Ecosystems Functioning of AZTI since 2018 partly supported by the IkerBasque Foundation. He has over 13 years of experience from the fields of genomics, bioinformatics, marine microbial ecology, application and development of computational sequence analysis methods. Central to this work is the utilisation of environmental genomics, i.e. DNA sequencing (metabarcoding and shotgun metagenomics) to reveal the structure and function of microbial communities, in order to better understand or monitor the impact of anthropogenic impacts such as contamination and climate change.
Anders obtained his PhD from the University of Bergen (Department of Biology), Norway, in 2013. Previous to and in parallel with his thesis work, he was employed as a bioinformatics programmer and later investigator at the Computational Biology Unit of the university. After his PhD and before starting at AZTI, Anders spent four years as an investigator in NEIKER, first supported by a Marie Curie mobility grant. Anders has authored or co-authored over 40 peer-reviewed publications, including in Nature and PNAS, and has teaching experience from international and national workshops in bioinformatics, as a MSc supervisor and PhD co-supervisor.

Photo of  Agostino  Leone
Agostino Leone
Researcher AZTI- Marine Ecosystems Functioning

2018 PhD in Earth, Life and Environmental Science, University of Bologna; 2017 Visiting Researcher in the MarianiLab, University of Salford, Manchester, UK; 2013 MSc in Marine Biology, University of Bologna; 2010 BSc in Evolutionary and Comparative Biology, University of Calabria. He Joined AZTI in 2018 after his PhD. He has broad interests in a wide range of research topics relating to marine conservation, ranging from biogeography to population genomics. In particular, he has interests in employing population genetics and next-generation sequencing technology to understand how marine populations are structured and how they persist in response to environmental and anthropogenic pressure. Referee for international journals and co-supervisor of MSc thesis in Marine Biology. Member of the American Elasmobranch Society (AES) and of the Italian Society for Evolutionary Biology (ISEB). He worked as teaching tutor in marine population genetics at the University of Bologna. Involved in the citizen science project “SharkPulse” of the Hopkins Marine Station of Stanford University. He was involved in the writing and the development of EU research projects.

Photo of  Ane  Lopez de Gamiz
Ane Lopez de Gamiz
PhD Student AZTI- Marine Ecosystems FunctioningEcosystem approach to management, Conservation of marine ecosystems

Mathematician and Msc in Mathematical Modelling and Research, Statistics and Computer Science. Currently working towards an integrated assessment of the Bay of Biscay marine ecosystem as my PhD Project.

Photo of  Maite  Louzao Arsuaga
Maite Louzao Arsuaga
Senior Researcher AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMarine Ecosystems Functioning, Conservation of Marine Ecosystems, Ecosystem Approach to Management, Assessment of the Marine Environment Health Status, Human Activities and Marine Spatial Planning.

My main research interests are ecological modeling, spatial ecology, oceanography, population dynamics and ecosystem-based management approach for the conservation of marine top predators.

I am currently the Principal Investigator (IP) of the CHALLENGES project (Pelagic changing ecosystems from predators

Photo of  Iván  Manso
Iván Manso
PhD Student AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningOperational Oceanography.

Degree in Physics (UPV/EHU), Postgraduate Course in Space Science and Technology (UPV/EHU) and Postgraduate Course in Education (mathematics and natural sciences) (UPV/EHU). Private tutor and teacher in Akademia Ikasi. Programming languages: Matlab, Fortran and IDL.

Photo of  Naiara  Rodríguez-Ezpeleta
Naiara Rodríguez-Ezpeleta
Senior Researcher AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningMolecular Ecology and Biotechnology,

2007 PhD in Biochemistry. University of Montreal (Canada)
2001 Graduate in Biology. University of Basque Country (Spain)
Previous Professional Experience
2008-2011 Platform Bioinformatics Specialist. CIC bioGUNE (Spain).
2007-2008 Research Associate. University of Newcastle (UK)
Research interests
Molecular ecology, molecular evolution, population genomics, phylogenomics, metabarcoding, metagenomics, high-throughput sequencing data analysis, bioinformatics.
15 years of experience in molecular biology, evolution, population genetics, epidemiology, genomics, large-scale sequence data generation and analysis, and bioinformatics. Author of articles published in high impact international journals. Editor of Frontiers in Genetics, Frontiers in Evolutionary and Population Genetics, and of the book Bioinformatics for High-throughput sequencing (Springer). Referee for international journals and funding agencies. Co-director of the Workshop on Genomics

Photo of  Anna  Rubio
Anna Rubio
Senior Researcher AZTI - Marine Ecosystems FunctioningOperational Oceanography Systems, Observation and Data, Operational Oceanography, Marine Ecosystems Functioning.

I received my Ph.D. thesis in Physical Oceanography in June, 2006 (UPC, Barcelona). My PhD research focused on mesoscale eddies in the NW Mediterranean. After 2 postdoctoral years in France (on mesoscale dynamics in the NW Mediterranean and the South Benguela EBUS), I started to work at AZTI. Today, my research focus mainly on the Bay of Biscay shelf-slope circulation and mesoscale activity from in-situ and remote sensing data, and especially on ocean surface currents from HF radar.