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Researchers from the Millennium Institute BASE teach a course on Antarctic ecosystems at the UdeC

Aimed at undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students, this year the course has researchers from the Millennium Institute for Biodiversity of Antarctic and Subantarctic Ecosystems (BASE), and seeks to address different subjects related to Antarctic sciences.

April 20, 2023.- Since 2016, the Faculty of Natural and Oceanographic Sciences of the University of Concepción (UdeC) has the elective of Antarctic Ecosystems. This year, contents such as microbial ecology, biogeographic processes, conservation, governance, among others, will be taught by principal and affiliated researchers from the Millennium Institute BASE.

The first class of the elective, held on Thursday, April 13, was led by PhD. Angie Díaz, UdeC academic and main researcher at the Millennium Institute BASE, who introduced the students and presented the main guidelines of the course. She also addressed content related to the geological and climatic history of Antarctica (environmental conditions and glaciations) and the history and evolution of the Southern Ocean (Antarctic Circumpolar Current, water masses, and sea ice).

PhD. Angie Díaz explains that her motivation for taking this course was “to be able to show the science that is carried out in Antarctica from undergraduate level and approach it as a probable goal of study, particularly my area, which is the evolution of marine life in the southern ocean”. In addition, she adds that her objective has always been to “encourage Antarctic sciences, especially in the lines that the Millennium Institute BASE works in the different Universities, and encourage the interaction of researchers and students, among all the Institutions involved”.

PhD. Angie Díaz in the first class of the UdeC Antarctic Ecosystems course. Photo: I. Millennium BASE/M. sotomayor

In the next sessions, matters related to microbial ecology will be addressed; biochemical cycles and greenhouse gases; biogeographical processes in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean; the role of adaptation from a physiological perspective; biogeographic processes in terrestrial and marine biota; conservation, climate change and human impact; and Antarctic Treaty System (ATS).

For the first time, the main researchers from the Millennium Institute BASE will participate: academics from the University of Chile (Uch), PhD. Elie Poulin, PhD. Julieta Orlando and PhD. Luis Valentín Ferrada; the academics of the Austral University of Chile (UAch), PhD. Claudio González-Wevar and PhD. Luis Vargas Chacoff; the academic from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (UC), PhD. Juliana Vianna; the academic from the University of Magallanes, Dr. Tamara Contador; and the researcher from the Chilean Antarctic Institute (INACH), PhD. César Cárdenas. The academic body will also include the researcher attached to the Millennium Institute BASE, also from the Institute of Ecology and Biodiversity (IEB), PhD. Claudia Maturana.

This elective specialization course is carried out in a hybrid format and is counting on undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students from the UCh, UC, UACh, UMAG and Andrés Bello University (Unab). One of the big changes this year is the inclusion of Postgraduate programs, since previously it was focused only on undergraduate students.


By: Marcelo Sotomayor y Constanza Barrientos

Main picture: M. Institute BASE/ M. Sotomayor