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Fieldwork on Glovers Reef, Belize

Dr. Konrad Hughen

Senior Scientist
Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry

Contact Information:
Work: 508-289-3353
Building: Clark

Mailing Address:
266 Woods Hole Road, MS #25
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Woods Hole, MA 02543

Research Interests

My research generally seeks to reconstruct past changes in climatic and environmental conditions in order to understand the mechanisms of abrupt climate shifts and their impacts on terrestrial and marine ecosystems.  My approach often involves the application of multi-proxy geochemical analyses to coral or sediment archives for extraction of the most information possible.   Ultimately, the goals include identifying the relative timing of rapid shifts in different locations, or reconstructing spatial patterns of variability in complex dynamic systems such as the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), El-Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and Southwest Asian Summer Monsoon (SASM). In addition, I use these techniques to investigate the responses of ecosystems to climate change. Multi-proxy records from sediments show the timing of vegetation changes following rapid shifts in climate. Recent work with corals is investigating the response of coral symbionts to environmental stress including thermal bleaching and exposure to pathogens.


Throughout my career, I have been dedicated to working with students and postdocs, providing research training and opportunities for fieldwork and exposure to the research com-munity at international conferences. ...


  • Coming soon!


Ph.D.: University of Colorado, Boulder - Geological Sciences, 1997

B.S.: University of California, Santa Cruz - Biology and Geology, double major, 1991

Awards and Honors

  • WHOI Doherty Chair in Education, 2014-2016
  • NOAA Climate and Global Change Postdoctoral Fellowship, 1997-2000
  • DOE Alexander Hollaender Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellowship, 1997 (declined)
  • NASA Earth Systems Science Graduate Research Fellowship, 1995-1997
  • Univ. of Colorado Doctoral Fellowship, 1991

Expeditions/Research Sites

Click on the above image to see a larger map of the Hughen Lab's expeditions and research sites.