Martin Visbeck

Ordinary Member of the Governing Board 2021 – 2024 / Past Ordinary Member of the Governing Board 2018-2021

Martin Visbeck

Nationality: German
Country of residence: Germany
Discipline: Oceanography
Born in: 1963

Academic background

Prof. Dr. Visbeck’s research is concerned with ocean and climate variability and change and ocean sustainability. The current regional emphasis is the circulation of the Atlantic. Where his group maintains the world’s longest direct current measurement series to document the variability of North Atlantic Deep Water transport in the Labrador Sea. In the context of a Kiel based collaborative research centers on climate-biogeochemical interactions in the tropical ocean his work focused on the supply of oxygen towards the extensive tropical oxygen minimum zones by diapycnal mixing and lateral eddy transfer. In his research on observations of ocean circulation and mixing he makes use of research vessel based expeditions but also is increasingly using and advancing modern robotic platforms including profiling floats and gliders, and the development of ocean observatories for long-term observations in the water column. He is spearheading new approached to bring all ocean data an information together in form of a digital-twin of the ocean making use of innovative informatics and data science. Furthermore, he supports conceptual frameworks to advance integrated marine research in the context of ocean sustainable development at the regional and international level. He has contributed to ocean literacy projects and capacity building in Africa.

Past and current positions

History of employment

  • 1989-1993: PhD student, Kiel University, Germany; Prof. F. Schott
  • 1994-1995: Postdoctoral fellow at MIT; Prof. J. Marshall
  • 1995-2004: Associate Research Scientist, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
  • 1999-2004: Associate Professor, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University, New York
  • since 2004: Adjunct Senior Research Scientist Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
  • since 2004: Professor at Kiel University and head of the research unit “Physical Oceanography” at GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel (before 2012 IFM-GEOMAR)
  • Other positions of responsibility
  • 2007-2011: Deputy Director, Leibniz-Institute for Marine Science, Kiel, Germany

International extended visits

  • 1998-1999: four months at CSIRO Hobart, Australia
  • 2008: two months at Ocean University China, Qingdao, China
  • 2008-2009: three months at Atlantic Oceanographic & Meteorological Laboratory (NOAA) and Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science (University of Miami), USA