Photo of Camilla Gustafsson
  • J.A. Palménin tie 260



  • Finland

  • Viikinkaari 1, Biocentre 3

    00790 Helsinki



Research output per year

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Personal profile

Description of research and teaching

Seagrasses and other aquatic plants are foundation species that maintain biodiversity and modify the abiotic and biotic environment including primary and secondary production. They form vast underwater meadows that can contain up to 8-9 co-occurring plant species. My aim is to to look at how this diversity of species and their traits, i.e. functional diversity, influence ecosystem processes. More specifically, I am interested in investigating the interplay between seagrass response and effect traits and their effects on the stability of seagrass meadows (i.e. ability to maintain primary production) during synergistic light reduction and elevated temperatures. In addition, the project addresses generalizability of the importance of seagrass effect traits for primary production at a global scale by comparing two temperate regions with high seagrass diversity (Baltic Sea, Finland, and Western Australia). The project outcome is to discern how diverse temperate meadows maintain ecosystem functioning locally in different habitats and in geographically contrasting regions. Unraveling which combinations of traits are crucial for ecosystem function and stability during extreme events can further support the adoption of an ecosystem approach in ecosystem management and facilitate the development of relevant conservation practices to ensure continuous coastal ecosystem functioning in a changing climate.

People: Camilla Gustafsson, Charlotte Angove, Alf Norkko (TZS), Gary Kendrick and research team (University of Western Australia), Johan Eklöf, Tiina Salo and research team (Stockholm University) 

Funding: Walter and Andrée de Nottbeck Foundation, Academy of Finland, Svenska Kulturfonden, UWA Research Collaboration Award

Education/Academic qualification

Marine Biology, Docent, University of Helsinki

Fields of Science

  • 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology
  • Marine biodiversity
  • Ecosystem functioning
  • Seagrass
  • Aquatic plants
  • Functional traits
  • Plant ecology

International and National Collaboration Publications and projects within past five years.


Factors regulating the coastal nutrient filter in the Baltic Sea

Carstensen, J., Conley, D. J., Almroth-Rosell, E., Asmala, E., Bonsdorff, E., Fleming-Lehtinen, V., Gustafsson, B. G., Gustafsson, C., Heiskanen, A-S., Janas, U., Norkko, A., Slomp, C., Villnäs, A., Voss, M. & Zilius, M., Jun 2020, In : Ambio. 49, 6, p. 1194-1210 17 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleScientificpeer-review

Open Access
Open Access

Quantifying the importance of functional traits for primary production in aquatic plant communities

Gustafsson, C. M. & Norkko, A. M., Jan 2019, In : Journal of Ecology. 107, 1, p. 154-166 13 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Open Access

Role of Eelgrass in the Coastal Filter of Contrasting Baltic Sea Environments

Asmala, E., Gustafsson, C., Krause-Jensen, D., Norkko, A., Reader, H., Staehr, P. A. & Carstensen, J., Nov 2019, In : Estuaries and Coasts. 42, 7, p. 1882-1895 14 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Open Access

Assessing the efficiencies and challenges for nutrient uptake by aquatic plants

Angove, C., Norkko, A. & Gustafsson, C., Oct 2018, In : Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology. 507, p. 23-30 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Open Access



  • 3 Academic visit to other institution
  • 2 Organisation and participation in conferences, workshops, courses, seminars
  • 2 Invited talk
  • 1 Supervisor or co-supervisor of doctoral thesis

Kristineberg Marin Research Station, University of Gothenburg

Anna Villnäs (Visiting researcher), Camilla Gustafsson (Visiting researcher), Eduardo Infantes (Other role)
29 Jan 202031 Jan 2020

Activity: Visiting an external institution typesAcademic visit to other institution

Naturlig återhämtning i Östersjöns artrika växtsamhällen

Camilla Gustafsson (Speaker)
5 Mar 2020

Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk


University of Western Australia

Camilla Gustafsson (Visiting researcher)
6 Sep 201711 Jan 2018

Activity: Visiting an external institution typesAcademic visit to other institution

Biodiversity and ecosystem functioning in aquatic plant communities

Camilla Gustafsson (Keynote speaker)
5 Feb 2017

Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk

Press / Media

Skärgårdens mångfald avgör funktionen

Camilla Gustafsson & Alf Norkko


1 Media contribution

Press/Media: Press / Media