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About Us

The European Chapter of the International Coral Reef Society (ICRS) was formed in 2019 to highlight the work of coral reef researchers based in or visiting Europe. We represent the mission and vision of the ICRS within Europe. We aim to hold a European Coral Reef Symposia (ECRS) every 4 years. The next ECRS is planned in 2024, location to be announced by the end of this year. We promote networking and collaboration between reef scientists and students at European institutions.

Meet the Chapter Council

Gert Wörheide

Chapter Chair

Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) Munich, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences & GeoBio-Center

Gert is a full professor at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) Munich, where he holds the Chair for Paleontology & Geobiology. He is also the Director of the Bavarian State Collections for Paleontology and Geology and the Paleontological Museum in Munich (Germany). His research group focusses on phylogenomics, molecular systematics, DNA barcoding, biomineralization, and comparative genomics of mainly coral reef organsisms, with special focus on sponges, (octo)corals, and echinoderms.

Follow me: @gwoerhe

Rosa van der Ven

Early career member

Lecturer @ Marine Animal Ecology Group, Wageningen University & Research.

Rosa is a marine biologist and has a PhD on the population genetic structure and genetic connectivity of stony corals in the Indian Ocean from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Free University of Brussels). She studies many aspects of coral reefs, from coral physiology to coral connectivity and species delimitation, and molecular biology is (generally) her method of choice. Rosa has always combined her research with teaching and research communication and she is currently a lecturer at Wageningen University & Research in the Netherlands.

Follow me: @rosa_vanderVen

Benjamin Müller

Early career member

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow at the University of Amsterdam (UvA), The Netherlands and the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, the USA.

Ben is a marine biologist studying energy and nutrient cycling in benthic ecosystems. His main interest lies in the release of dissolved organic matter by corals and algae and its subsequent uptake and utilization by sponges and bacterioplankton. After initially focusing on Caribbean reefs, he now also extends his research to Pacific reefs and deep-sea sponge grounds.

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Instagram: benblueexplorer

Elsa B. Girard

Graduate member

PhD candidate, Naturalis Biodiversity Center (Leiden)

Everything living under water passionates me, and coral reefs are the optimum that can be explored simply with our head in the water! Starting in geology, I shifted to marine biology at the master level and have thrived in the field since then. I am now doing my PhD on living sand (benthic foraminifera) in turbid reef environments within the European ITN program 4D-REEF. I am also a plastic-pollution fighter, where no action is too small. 

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Follow me: @EBGirard

Megan Clampitt

Communications Officer

Megan Clampitt has previously focused her research on coral restoration and has worked on different projects globally including Coral Restoration Foundation (CRF), Reef Renewal Bonaire (RRB) and Velaa Private Island Coral Project. Currently she is doing her PhD researching the use of Artificial intelligence (AI) for coral health monitoring in Nice, France. 

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Jenny Mallon

Graduate member

Marine Biogeochemistry PhD candidate, University of Glasgow, Scotland

Jenny is currently finishing her PhD investigating coral reef metabolism. She is based at the University of Glasgow, Scotland, ( and collaborates with research groups in Mexico and Florida to conduct field and mesocosm experiments. Jenny is the co-chair of the ICRS Student and Early Career Chapter ( and recently represented the ICRS at the COP26 climate change conference in Glasgow. 

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Marc Kochzius


Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Belgium), Department of Biology, Ecology and Biodiversity research group

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Rupert Ormond

Co-Director, Marine Conservation International
Hon. Professor, Centre for Marine Biodiversity & Biotechnology, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh

Rupert is affiliated with Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland, having previously worked at the Universities of Cambridge, York, London, and Glasgow, as well as for the Save Our Seas Foundation and Marine Conservation International. He has been involved in research and conservation on coral reefs for over 50 years, mainly in the Red Sea and Indian Ocean regions. His research has focused on reef fish communities, ecological interactions between reef organisms, impacts affecting corals and the behaviour of sharks. He was Corresponding Secretary of the International Coral Reef Society from 2011 to 2019 and is now Editor-in-Chief of the Society’s bulletin Reef Encounter.

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