top of page
boat in tower bay_edited.jpg

Sessions and Speakers

Please see below for information about the special sessions and speakers. The organising committee thanks all speakers for their contributions. 



Community discussion: Thinking Between Disciplines and Building Bridges:  Interdisciplinary Research in Sclerochronology

with an introduction by Dr. Meghan Burchell 

Tuesday, 13 September 2022, 14:15-15:15 UTC


What makes a good collaboration between the natural and social sciences?  How can we build connections beyond our research comfort zones?  Dr. Meghan Burchell’s brief introductory presentation will highlight ways to foster interdisciplinary collaboration in sclerochronology through a balance of risk and respect in research design.


In the open-discussion part of the session, all conference participants are invited to share their thoughts, experiences, and questions about inter- and transdisciplinary in sclerochronology.


- - - - - - - - - - - 


Lecture: Advancements in otolith research 

by Dr. Tomihiko Higuchi and Dr. Tatsuya Sakamoto  

Wednesday, 14 September 2022, 09:10-10:10 UTC


Many fish species migrate through the ocean, but their migratory routes and ecological changes have been difficult to trace. Otoliths are important sclero-archives for unraveling fish migration. In this lecture, approaches to understanding marine organisms' migration (isotope geochemistry, growth line analysis, numerical simulation) will be presented by two speakers.

- - - - - - - - - - - 


Lecture: Technical capabilities of extracting environmental data from biogenic hard parts

by Prof. Dr. Bernd Schöne

Wednesday, 14 September 2022, 10:30-11:30 UTC


In this interactive lecture, Prof. Dr. Bernd Schöne will talk about different sampling and analytical techniques with a focus on δ13C and δ18O analysis using Continuous Flow Gas Chromatography Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometry (CF-GC-IRMS) and GasBench II. The lecture will touch on best practices and pitfalls, with room for discussion, questions, and input by all conference participants.


- - - - - - - - - - - 


Lecture: Toolkit for proxy-model intercomparison

by Dr. Diane Thompson

Wednesday, 14 September 2022, 16:15-17:15 UTC


Over the past ten years, a number of simple Proxy System Models have been developed to describe processes by which climate signals of interest (e.g., temperature, salinity) are recorded by calcifying organisms. Using high-resolution coral geochemical records as an example, Dr. Diane Thompson will present an overview of strategies and tools available to facilitate intercomparisons between proxies, observations, and models, ultimately improving our ability to constrain uncertainty and better reconstruct past climate changes and impacts on marine systems.


- - - - - - - - - - - 


Community information: Preview of ISC6 in Tokyo 2023

by Dr. Kotaro Shirai

Thursday, 15 September 2022, 11:45-12:00 UTC


In this short presentation, Dr. Kotaro Shirai will briefly review some important information about 6th ISC Tokyo, including the schedule, important dates, sessions, and keynote speakers. He will also provide some relevant details regarding logistics, city, hotels, access, restaurants, and places for sightseeing.


- - - - - - - - - - - 


Panel session: Advice for early-career researchers

with Dr. Kristine DeLong, Dr. Amy Prendergast, Dr. Melita Peharda, Dr.  Hussein Sayani, Dr. Meghan Burchell

Thursday, 15 September 2022, 12:30-13:30 UTC


In this panel session, five accomplished scientists are going to answer questions by early-career researchers about jobs, collaboration, and any other relevant topic that might come up. To send in questions ahead of the conference, please go to: 



Dr. Meghan Burchell

Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador

(acting) Associate Dean of the School of Graduate Studies & Associate Professor Archaeology


Meghan Burchell is an interdisciplinary social scientist, whose research intersects archaeology, sclerochronology, and geochemistry to understand long-term human-environmental interactions in coastal landscapes.  Grounded in a feminist approach to promote inclusive science, Meghan’s program of research emphasizes intensive mentoring for early career researchers by fostering an environment that promotes equity, diversity and inclusion – and high-resolution analyses.  She completed her PhD at McMaster University (Anthropology/Earth Sciences) part-time while working in university teaching and administration. 


Her training at the University of Mainz provided the platform to establish the first laboratory in Canada for high-resolution analysis of mollusks, with a suite of instrumentation including:  FTIR, pXRF, petrography and high-resolution digital microscopy.  Her current projects, funded by the Social Sciences Humanities and Research Council of Canada, the Natural Science Engineering Research Council of Canada, and the Canadian Foundation for Innovation, focuses on working with Indigenous groups to interpret the information encoded in marine shells to tell stories of the human and environmental past on the Pacific and Atlantic Coasts of Canada. 


Email: ¦  Twitter: @meghanburchell

Google scholar: Dr. Burchell


Dr. Tomihiko Higuchi

Research Fellow, Atmosphere and Ocean Research Institute, The University of Tokyo


Dr. Tomihiko Higuchi has studied the stress response of scleractinian corals, especially coral bleaching. Also, he investigates the biomineralization process of corals and element utilization, such as sulfur, by corals and their symbiotic algae. He obtained his Ph.D at the University of the Ryukyus (Okinawa, Japan) in 2009, and worked at Shizuoka University as a project assistant professor from 2010-2015. He started work at Atmosphere and Ocean Research Institute, The University of Tokyo from 2015. Recently, he has conducted research on reconstruction of fish migration history of important marine resources for fisheries, by analyzing fish otolith which is made of calcium carbonate the same as coral skeleton. He has been an editorial board member of Scientific Reports (Environmental section) since 2016.



Google Scholar: Dr. Higuchi

Dr. Tatsuya Sakamoto 

JSPS Overseas Research Fellow, The Instituto Português do Mar e da Atmosfera / Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS)


Dr Tatsuya Sakamoto is a marine ecologist working mainly on small pelagic fish around the globe using analytical chemistry and numerical simulations. He received his PhD with top marks from Agricultural and Life Sciences, The University of Tokyo in 2019. He then worked as a postdoctoral researcher at the Fisheries Research and Education Agency in Japan and now works at the Instituto Português do Mar e da Atmosfera (Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere) in Portugal. He is one of the convenors of the "International Symposium on Small Pelagic Fish: New Frontiers in Science for Sustainable Management", which will take place in November this year. Recently, his article was accepted by Nature Communications. "Hurray!"



Google Scholar: Dr. Sakamoto


Prof. Dr. Bernd Schöne

Head of WG Paleontology / Sclerochronology

Institute of Geosciences, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany

Bernd did his PhD thesis (1997) on the effects of a global catastrophe (oxygen deficiency) on marine biota during the Middle Devonian including some taxonomy work of dacryoconarids (planktonic tentaculites). Postdoc times took him to Switzerland (DAAD; WSL-ETH: dendrochronology, reforestration of the Swiss Alps), Tucson, AZ, USA (Humboldt-Foundation; Univ. of Arizona; effects of damming of the Colorado river on invertebrates in the delta; mollusk sclerochronology) and Japan (JSPS; Univ. of Tokyo; mollusk sclerochronology) before he lead an Emmy-Noether research group (DFG) at the Univ. of Frankfurt/M, Germany (mollusk sclerochronology: climate variations in the North Atlantic realm during the Holocene, chronology construction etc.). Since 2006, he is Professor for Applied and Analytical Paleontology / Sclerochronology at the Univ. of Mainz, Germany (


Dr. Diane Thompson

Director of Marine Research, Biosphere 2

Assistant Professor, Department of Geosciences, University of Arizona 

Diane received her PhD from University of Arizona in 2013, and was awarded a 2-year Advanced Study Program Postdoctoral Fellowship at the National Center for Atmospheric Research.  She started as an Assistant Professor at Boston University in January 2016.  She is now Assistant Professor in the Department of Geosciences at the University of Arizona, and the Director of Marine Research at the Biosphere 2.

Diane’s research bridges the fields of ecology, paleoecology, and paleoclimatology to investigate climates and reef systems of the past, and in turn, improve our ability to preserve reef resilience under current and future climate change.  Her work spans a range of scales from local (e.g., reef-scale circulation) to global (e.g., climate variability and change) and capitalizes on a blend of field and laboratory, observational and modeling, and experimental and theoretical approaches.  She aims to improve our understanding of tropical-climate variability through investigations of topical-climate archives, including coral, speleothem, and marine and lake sediment records.  She also aims to further investigate the stability of the coral-reef ecosystem through past climate changes.  Determining whether the changes occurring on today’s reefs are unprecedented through geological time will improve our predictions of coral-reef resilience under future global climate change.

Tropical Climate & Coral Reefs Lab – Thompson lab (


Dr. Kotaro Shirai

Associate Professor, Atmosphere and ocean research institute, The University of Tokyo


Dr. Kotaro Shirai is a geochemist mainly working on biogenic calcium carbonate for paleoclimate reconstruction. Using his expertise in analytical chemistry, he also studies a broad range of research topics, including the ecology of marine and terrestrial organisms, archaeology, environmental sciences, and health sciences. He completed a Ph.D at the Department of Earth and Planetary Science, The University of Tokyo, in 2007. Then he did posdoc in different disciplines, including fisheries sciences, paleontology both in Japan and Germany. Kotaro now leads his research team at Marine Analytical Chemistry group, AORI. He was a scientific committee member of 6th International otoliths symposium in 2018, and will be a chief conference organizer of 6th International Sclerochronology Conference in 2023 Tokyo.


Dr. Amy Prendergast 

School of Geography, Earth, and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Melbourne


Amy is a Senior Lecturer and ARC DECRA Fellow in the School of Geography, Earth, and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Melbourne. She has previously held an Alexander von Humboldt Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Mainz in Germany and a McKenzie Fellowship at the University of Melbourne, Australia. Amy received her PhD in Archaeological Science and Stable Isotope Geochemistry from the University of Cambridge in 2014 and holds a BA (Classics and Archaeology) and a BSc Hons (Earth Sciences) from the University of Melbourne. She currently holds major research grants from the Australian Research Council and the US National Science foundation.


Amy employs geochemical records in combination with growth increment analyses (sclerochronology) from biogenic carbonates to generate high-resolution records of environmental change and seasonality. She focuses on generating records from archaeological sites to facilitate reconstructions of human-environment interaction. She is involved in both proxy development and palaeoenvironmental reconstruction. Her research focuses on exploring the relationship between humans and environmental change. She studies how humans and our hominin ancestors responded to rapid environmental changes over the past several million years. She has worked at sites across North Africa, Western Asia, Southeast Asia and Australia.


Dr. Melita Peharda

Senior Scientist at the Institute of Oceanography and Fisheries, Split, Croatia


Scientist, wife, mother of two, and a dog owner. Her background includes BA in Human Ecology (College of the Atlantic, USA), MSc in Biology and PhD in Oceanography (University of Zagreb, Croatia). Melita works as senior researcher at the Institute of Oceanography and Fisheries (Split, Croatia) and her research is related to ecology and sclerochronology of marine bivalves in the Mediterranean. She is also involved in project evaluations at national and international level, and is an associate editor in the journal Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science and the journal Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. Recently Melita published a popular science book on bivalves, in Croatian language. More info at:

Dr. Hussein Sayani

Senior program manager and ESG consultant, Langan


Hussein is a senior program manager and environmental, social and governance (ESG) consultant at Langan, an engineering and environmental consulting company. He specializes in working with companies to develop their ESG programs, which includes quantifying GHG emissions, developing and implementing emission reduction programs, and climate mitigation strategies. He received a Ph.D. in Earth and Atmospheric Science from Georgia Tech and currently holds a courtesy Research Scientist appointment at Florida State University.


Dr. Kristine DeLong

Associate Professor, Department of Geography and Anthropology, Louisiana State University

Dr. DeLong completed her Ph.D. in Marine Science at University of South Florida and her post-doctoral research at the U.S. Geological Survey in St. Petersburg, FL. Dr. DeLong has expertise in paleoceanography and paleoclimatology, especially in tropical regions with 17 years of research experience. She is one of a few paleoclimatologists that has published multi-century long coral-based temperature reconstructions from Atlantic and Pacific corals. Dr. DeLong’s research is focused on climate change of the past primarily in the subtropics to tropical regions for the past 130,000 years.

bottom of page