Anneke ter Schure
From the Netherlands
I just started my PhD in September 2018 at CEES which will focus on anthropogenic influences on biodiversity using sedimentary ancient DNA. Before coming here, I was a teacher at an interdisciplinary bachelor program at the University of Amsterdam entitled ‘Future Planet Studies’. Just like my project now, this programme is very much about the impact we make in terms of the capacity of our planet and aiming to solve these complex problems in a holistic way: by integrating the perspectives from different disciplines within the social sciences and natural sciences.
I have previously done a research project towards the reconstruction of paleotemperatures using chironomid headcapsules as a proxy. It is climate reconstructions like these that are the basis of climate models for the future and it is interesting how much we can actually infer from the these fossil records. Within the current project, I will use sedimentary ancient DNA to get an understanding of how, but also an indication of when we have actively influenced our natural environment in the past, either for food, for medication or other purposes.