THEME 1: MICROBIAL BIOGEOGRAPHY ACROSS AND WITHIN AQUATIC BIOMES
Lead: Dr. Jarone Pinhassi, Linnaeus University
How is microbial diversity structured across environmental gradients and how do communities respond to changes in externally defined environmental conditions? What is the imprint of the past (i.e.priority effects)? How active are microbial populations and what are the roles of microbial seed banks and dormancy in shaping biogeographical patterns?
THEME 3: MICROBIAL INTERACTIONS AND EVOLUTION
Lead: Dr. Rachel Foster, Stockholm University
What are the functional and evolutionary implications of prevailing interactions over shorter and longer timescales? What characterizes interactions between closely related and more distant populations or even across different domains of life? What metabolites are exchanged? What enables microorganisms to cross biome boundaries and colonize new environments?
THEME 2: FUNCTIONAL DIVERSITY
Lead: Dr. Anders Andersson, KTH Royal Institute of Technology
How are ecological and metabolic functions structured across time and space in aquatic microbiomes? How does community assembly and genetically encoded diversity in metabolisms and ecological functions contribute to actual biogeochemical processes and in regulating biogeochemical cycling of carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, sulphur and other bioactive elements? How can diversity in metabolic processes be implemented in biogeochemical models?
THEME 4: MICROBES AS ECOSYSTEM ENGINEERS
Lead: Dr. Stefan Bertilsson, Uppsala University
Microorganisms respond to differences in environmental properties, but in what ways and to what extent do their metabolic properties and growth also change the nature, stability and other emergent features of aquatic ecosystems? New species with entirely new traits may invade systems once certain thresholds are surpassed and this may push entire ecosystems in unexpected directions. How can we account for this in aquatic resource management and possibly explore it for environmental management purposes?