Ragnar Elmgren

Ragnar Elmgren

Professor i brackvattensekologi

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Works at Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences
Telephone 08-16 40 16
Visiting address Svante Arrhenius väg 20 A
Room N 224
Postal address Institutionen för ekologi miljö och botanik 106 91 Stockholm

About me

I studied Zoology, Chemistry, Philosophy and Scandinavian Archaeology at Stockholm University. My 1976 Ph.D. thesis in Animal Ecology was entitled “Baltic Benthos Communities and the Role of the Meiofauna”.

In 1977-78, I studied the ecological effects of oil pollution at the Marine Ecosystems Research Laboratory, Graduate School of Oceanography, University of Rhode Island. After returning to Stockholm University, I have investigated Baltic ecosystems, with an emphasis on bottom fauna, eutrophication effects, cyanobacterial blooms and methods for coastal management. I was appointed Professor of Brackish Water Ecology in 1990 and have taken part in the EU projects BASYS, SIGNAL and SPICOSA and in the Mistra programs SUCOZOMA and MARE.

Twenty graduate students have obtained doctorates in Animal Ecology, Marine Ecology or Systems Ecology under my supervision.

My current research deals with ecosystem-based management of the Baltic Sea, Baltic cyanobacterial blooms and eutrophication. I coordinated Stockholm University's strategic marine environmental program Baltic Ecosystem Adaptive Management, BEAM (

I was among the 1360 contributors to the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment honoured by the 2nd Zayed International Prize for the Environment in 2005. In 2006, I received the Demel Medal of the Polish Sea Fisheries Institute and in 2011 the Grand Prize of the Baltic Sea Foundation ( and the Askö 50 Year Award of Stockholm University's Marine Research Centre. Recently a paper that I was a coauthor of was awarded the 2018 John Martin Award (which "recognizes a paper in aquatic sciences that is judged to have had high impact on subsequent research in the field") by the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO).  

I retired from my professorship in September, 2011, was re-hired half-time until the end of 2015 to coordinate the BEAM program and participate in several research projects, and still work on results and insights from 50 years of research.

Last updated: January 25, 2021

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