04/09/2013 From Bologna to Tromsø

Giuliana Panieri

The opportunity to be part of CAGE inspired Italian Giuliana Panieri to bring her family of four to Northern Norway.

An offer to study foraminifera organisms in the Arctic was more than the micropalaeontologist could resist.

“I really wanted to be part of CAGE, and feel like Tromsø is the place I need to be right now”, Giuliana (pictured above) explains enthusiastically.

The secrets of the foraminifera

The centre’s new associate professor is mainly interested in foraminifera in methane emission sites. The species distribution and geochemistry of the foraminifera shells can indicate the presence of methane in the marine environment.

“Foraminifera organisms have a wide geographical distribution in different types of marine environments. That means that they are easy to find. Potentially they also exist in all stratigraphic sections, which make them useful for studying the past”, Giuliana says.

Micropalaeontology is a traditional discipline which she will use as a new and innovative tool to reveal the foraminifera’s undiscovered secrets. When using this approach, this group of organisms can reveal past methane emissions and related climate changes.

A future in Tromsø

Giuliana has visited Tromsø a few times before, and has also been teaching at UiT. Now she is very happy to live here permanently.

“My husband and I both agree that this will be a good place for the children to grow up. It’s been a big jump, but we definitely see a future here”.

Her two children have already settled in, and are speaking some Norwegian after just two weeks in Tromsø.

“When I see them at the international school in the morning, it’s like being in an airport – everyone is talking in their own language. It’s amazing to be in such an open, multicultural society,” Giuliana says.

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