Dr. Karin Kvale

Forschungsbereich 2: Marine Biogeochemie
FE Biogeochemische Modellierung

Room: SB-6
Phone: +49 431 600-4289
Email: kkvale(at)

Düsternbrooker Weg 2
D-24105 Kiel

Research interests

I am interested in internally-driven ocean biogeochemical feedbacks and climate system thresholds. I use simple and intermediate-complexity climate models to test representations of marine biogeochemistry and phytoplankton ecology with the objective of cost-effectively simulating their influence on climate over a variety of timescales. 


PhD Climate Science (2014), University of New South Wales, Australia

MSc Atmospheric Science (2009), University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

BSc Environmental Science (2005), Indiana University, U.S.A., with minors in Geology, Mathematics and Geography

Papers under review



Refereed publications

Kvale KF, Turner KE, Landolfi A, Meissner KJ. (2019) Phytoplankton calcifiers control nitrate cycling and the pace of transition in warming icehouse and cooling greenhouse climates. Biogeosciences.

Kvale KF, Turner KE, Keller DP, Meissner KJ (2018). Asymmetric dynamical ocean responses in warming icehouse and cooling greenhouse climates. Environmental Research Letters.

Kvale KF and Meissner KJ (2017). Primary production sensitivity to phytoplankton light attenuation parameter increases with transient forcing. Biogeosciences. doi:10.9514/bg-14-4767-2017.

Kvale KF, Khatiwala S, Dietze H, Kriest I, Oschlies A (2017). Evaluation of the Transport Matrix Method for simulation of ocean biogeochemical tracers. Geosci. Model Dev.doi:10.5194/gmd-2017-29.

Kvale KF, Meissner KJ, Keller DP (2015). Potential increasing dominance of heterotrophy in the global ocean. Environmental Research Letters. doi:10.1088/1748-9326/10/7/074009.

Kvale KF, Meissner KJ, Keller DP, Eby M, Schmittner A (2015). Explicit planktic calcifiers in the University of Victoria Earth System Climate Model version 2.9.  Atmosphere-Ocean. doi:10.1080/07055900.2015.1049112.

Kvale KF, Zickfeld K, Meissner KJ, Tanaka K, Bruckner T, Weaver A (2012). Carbon dioxide emission pathways avoiding dangerous ocean impacts.  Weather, Climate and Society, 4(3). doi:10.1175/WCAS-D-11-00030.1.

Kvale KF, Pryor SC (2006). Precipitation composition in the Ohio River Valley: Spatial variability and temporal trends. Water, Air and Soil Pollution, 170. doi:10.1007/s11270-006-2861-1.

Renshaw CE, Johnson GD, Kvale KF. (2000). A laboratory exercise to determine dinosaur speeds using dimensional analysis.  Journal of Geoscience Education, 48.

Other publications

Kvale KF (2014).  Representations of biological calcification in two climate models, PhD Dissertation, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia. Link

Kvale KF, Meissner KJ,  d’Orgeville M, Matear R, McNeil B, England MH (2011). The combined impact of CO2-dependent parameterizations of Redfield and rain ratios on ocean carbonate saturation. Biogeosciences Discussions. Link

Kvale KF (2008). Carbon Dioxide Emission Pathways Avoiding Dangerous Ocean Impacts. Masters Dissertation, University of Victoria. Link

Student Supervision

Himadri Saini (2018 - present). Co-supervising PhD at University of New South Wales, Sydney, AU. Her thesis work focuses on calcifier and diatom interactions over glacial cycles.

Student Assistants (HiWi)

Katherine Turner, November 2015 - June 2017

Hannah Geisinger, September - October 2017

Teaching experience

Introduction to the Marine Environment (MSCI0501, UNSW):

·      Course Coordinator, S2 2009- S1 2011

·      Botany Bay Field Trip Leader/Lecturer S1 2010- S1 2011

·      Sydney Aquarium Field Trip Leader S1 2010- S1 2011

Coral Reefs: Ecology and Environment (MSCI2051, UNSW):

·      Lady Eliott Island Field Trip Lecturer 2/2010

Introduction to the Earth System (EOS110, Univ. of Victoria):

·      Lab Teaching Assistant 9/2007-12/2007