William Johnson, PhD student, UMR BEEP (Brest, France)

William has recently joined the Deep Sea Lab at Ifremer for his PhD under the supervision of Jozée Sarrazin, Marjolaine Matabos and Pierre-Antoine Dessandier. He is a Brazilian biologist from the Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco. He has a Master in Biodiversity and Marine Ecology from Universidade Federal de São Paulo. Since the beginning of his career, William has investigated the ecology, evolution and taxonomy of small organisms- called meiofauna- that live on the sea floor. These animals perform important ecosystem functions such as nutrient cycling and organic matter decomposition, and can be found from calm environments to extreme environments, such as hydrothermal vents.

The aim of William's thesis is to investigate the resilience of meiofauna in relation to an induced disturbance at the Lucky Strike vent field. Its data have been obtained in the Mid- Atlantic Ridge and represent an important opportunity to reveal impacts of disturbance on the resilience and recovery of meiofaunal communities. Along with ecological aspects, William investigates the taxonomy of free-living marine nematodes, one of the most abundant animal groups on Earth, with high species and functional diversity. In addition to his thesis, William has strong interests in Brazilian literature, racial anthropology and political science.