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Dr Alejandro Gallego

Telephone: +44 (0)131 244 2697
E-mail:  a.gallego@marlab.ac.uk or alejandro.gallego@gov.scot
Address: Marine Scotland, Marine Laboratory, 375 Victoria Road, Aberdeen, AB11 9DB, Scotland, UK

Research Interests

As leader of the Oceanography Group, I have an interest in oceanographic research and monitoring in Scottish waters.  Much of this is focused on understanding the processes that drive the circulation patterns, and the trends and variability in the environmental conditions of our seas, based on observations and models.  This research work has direct applications in aquaculture, fisheries, conservation, and marine renewable energy.  More recently, I have become quite involved in the research (especially modelling) aspects of oil spill preparedness, in particular in the deep waters off the Scottish continental shelf.  Traditionally, my own research has focused on biological and bio-physical modelling of, primarily, the early-life stages of fish but also zooplankton. I am interested in the mechanisms that control growth and survival of these organisms, transport patterns and connectivity between populations and areas, and the population dynamics of the plankton community in general.


I collaborate with scientists across Scotland, the UK and Europe, in particular those involved in the following projects, groups and activities:

  • TeraWatt and EcoWatt2050: EPSRC-funded projects investigating the potential effect of Marine Renewable Energy developments on the marine environment, largely using modelling tools.
  • FASTNEt (http://www.sams.ac.uk/fastnet): a UK-funded project studying the exchange between the open ocean and the UK shelf seas.
  • International Council for the Exploration of the Sea:  I played a major role in the Working Group on Modelling Physical Biological Interactions (WGPBI), particularly in the “larval fish modelling sub-group”, where I organised various workshops, journal special issues, ICES ASC Theme Sessions and Co-operative Research Report publications.  The working group evolved into WGIPEM (Working Group on Integrative, Physical-biological and Ecosystem Modelling), of which I am a member.
  • MASTS (http://www.masts.ac.uk): a pooling initiative bringing together marine researchers from around Scotland, I am a member of the Steering Group for the Dynamics & Properties of Marine Systems Theme, and have played a significant role in a number of activities (e.g. workshop) sponsored by the Theme.
  • Honorary Lecturer, School of Biological Sciences, University of Aberdeen.
  • Co-supervision of students with academic partners.  Currently in collaboration with the University of Aberdeen (PhD) and the University of East Anglia (PhD).

External Committees and Responsibilities

I am a member of the ICES Working Group on Integrative, Physical-biological and Ecosystem Modelling (WGIPEM).  I am also a member of the steering group of the Dynamics and Properties of Marine Systems Theme within MASTS (Marine Alliance Science and Technology Scotland).  I participate in a number of groups managed by Oil & Gas UK (Oil Spill Response Forum, Modelling Workgroup and various Technical Interest Groups of the latter).  I am a Contributing Editor of Marine Ecology Progress Series and have extensive experience as a reviewer for over 20 different scientific journals and some 10 funding agencies, including NERC (UK), NSF (US), The Research Council of Norway (at least annually since before 2000) and the European Commission.

Most Recent Publications

  • Gallego, A., Gibb, F.M., Tullet, D. and Wright, P.J.  (2016) Bio-physical connectivity patterns of benthic marine species used in the designation of Scottish nature conservation marine protected areas.  ICES Journal of Marine Science.  doi:10.1093/icesjms/fsw174
  • O’Hara Murray, R. and Gallego, A. (2016).  A modelling study of the tidal stream resource of the Pentland Firth, Scotland.  Renewable Energy
  • Gallego, A., Side, J., Baston, S., Waldman, S,. Bell, M., James, M., Davies., I., O’Hara Murray, R., Heath, M., Sabatino, A., McKee, D., McCaig, C., Karunarathna, H., Fairley, I., Chatzirodou, A., Venugopal, V., Nemalidinne, R., Yung, T. Z., Vögler, A., MacIver, R. and Burrows., M.  (2016) Large scale three-dimensional modelling for wave and tidal energy resource and environmental impact: methodologies for quantifying acceptable thresholds for sustainable exploitation.  Ocean & Coastal Management.
  • Side, J., Gallego, A., James, M., Davies, I., Heath, M., Karunarathna, H., Venugopal., V., Vögler, A. and Burrows, M. (2016)  Developing methodologies for large scale wave and tidal stream marine renewable energy extraction and its environmental impact: An overview of the TeraWatt project.  Ocean & Coastal Management.
  • O’Hara Murray, R. and Gallego, A. (2016)  Data acquisition for numerical modelling and the development of realistic tidal and wave energy scenarios in Orkney Islands waters, Scotland.  Ocean & Coastal Management.
  • Abascal, A.J., Sanchez, J., Chiri, H., Ferrer, M.I., Cárdenas, M., Gallego, A., Castanedo, S., Medina, R., Alonso- Martirena, A., Berx, B., Turrell, W.R. and Hughes, S.L.. (in press) Operational oil spill trajectory modelling using HF Radar currents: A northwest European continental shelf case study. Marine Pollution Bulletin.

Full Publications List

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Title:Dr Alejandro Gallego
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