Mayke Nieuwkerk's picture

Mayke Nieuwkerk

PhD Candidate, in Paleoecology/Experimental Ecology at the EECRG
  • E-mailMayke.Nieuwkerk@uib.no
  • Phone+47 968 12 905+47 968 12 905
  • Visitor Address
    Thormøhlens gate 53 A/B
  • Postal Address
    Postboks 7803
    5020 Bergen

(Palaeo)-ecologist, studying ecological responses to environmental change.
I am interested in the fields of Palaeoecology, Terrestrial Ecology, Environmental Biology and Climate Change Research.

2019-2022 PhD in Palaeoecology, Experimental Ecology and Photobiology at the University of Bergen.
"Using UV-B-absorbing compounds in sporopollenin as a proxy for plant-received UV-B: a greenhouse- and field-experimental   approach"

2018 Master thesis (II) at the University of Bergen and Utrecht University
"Do pollen grains get a suntan: An investigation into the drivers of variation in UV-B-absorbing compounds in pollen grains to develop a proxy for solar radiation"

2016-2017 Master thesis (I) at Utrecht University
"Towards climate tolerant crops: The effect of beneficial microbes on thermomorphogenesis in A. thaliana"

2016 Bachelor thesis at the University of Amsterdam
"Calibrating modern phytolith assemblages with vegetation composition in tropical forests"


I am currently working on my PhD at the EECRG at the University of Bergen titled "Using UV-B-absorbing compounds in sporopollenin as a proxy for plant-received UV-B: a greenhouse- and field-experimental approach".

During my PhD I will research several key challanges of using pollen chemistry as a proxy for plant-recieved UV-B.
1. How important are ‘within-tree’ variations of UV-B-absorbing compounds and how does this relate to local shading effects?
2. What is the importance of phenotypic plasticity compared to local adaptation on the UV-B-absorbing compounds signal?
3. In what developmental stage are the pollen most sensitive to changes in UV-B radiation?

My main supervisor during my PhD is Alistair Seddon and Matthew Robson and Daniela Festi are my co-supervisors.

I am also a part of the chemical paleoecology subgroup of the EECRG, PalaeoChem. Together we discuss our findings and methods regarding pollen chemistry, as well as discuss recent papers on pollen chemistry (including papers focussed on the laboratory methods THM-GC/MS, FTIR and Raman analysis).