NIVA Denmark

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NIVA Denmark Water Research is an independent non-profit unit focusing on research and consulting supporting evidence-based implementation and reporting of the Water Framework Directive (WFD), the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) as well as other EU Directives (e.g. MSPD and Natura 2000).

At NIVA Denmark Water Research we are a mix of experienced scientists and experts passionate about the application of the best available knowledge when implementing evidence-based management strategies. We work in streams, rivers, lakes, estuaries, coastal waters and offshore marine waters. Our key research areas are: biodiversity, nutrient enrichment and eutrophication, climate change, hazardous substances including litter and microplastics, physical modification, ecosystem health as well as the multiple human activities potentially impairing aquatic ecosystems. Hence, we develop and test indicators, monitoring methods and assessment tools with an ultimate aim of carrying out ecological analyses and synthesises related to the current environmental challenges in aquatic ecosystems.

NIVA Denmark Water Research is formally a regional office of Norwegian Institute for Water Research. Hence, we are backed by more than 350 dedicated experts and aquatic research scientists.

Our team

MolanderPål Molander, general manager at NIVA – Denmark.

JesperValgtpngJesper H. Andersen, Chief Scientist (PhD). JHAs research interests include eutrophication, hazardous substances, biodiversity, development and application of indicator-based assessment tools, and ecosystem-based management of coastal and marine waters (e.g. WFD, MSFD, HELCOM BSAP, etc.). JHA has been Project Manager of large national and international projects (e.g. M-FDC, BALANCE, EUTRO-PRO, HOLAS, MSFD-DIA, HARMONY, MONIS, ECOMAR, etc.). JHA has a passionate interest in synthesis research and is leader of the Aquatic Synthesis Research Centre (AquaSYNC). Former employments include: Danish Environmental Protection Agency, National Environmental Research Institute (NERI), DHI and Aarhus University – as well as an adjunct Professorship in Ecosystem-based Management of the Baltic Sea (2014-2018) at the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE).
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CiaranRedigeretCiarán Murray, Research Scientist (PhD). Research interests include light in marine ecosystems, development of indicator-based assessment tools (e.g. HEAT, BEAT, CHASE, NEAT, MESH and WATERS) and status assessments in relation to eutrophication, biodiversity and “chemical status”. CM has participated in major international projects including HELCOM HOLAS, HARMONY, WATERS and DEVOTES. CM has previously held positions at Aarhus University and DHI.
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Emilie Kallenbach, Researcher (PhD) at NIVA Denmark. EK is educated as limnologist from University of Copenhagen, section of freshwater biology. Her master was about nature restoration and aquatic ecosystem metabolism. EK’s PhD focused on microplastics in freshwater invertebrates. EK is also a member of ICES’ Working Group on Marine Litter.

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Therese Harvey, Research Scientist (PhD). TH has more than 15 years experience in environmental monitoring, water resource management and mapping marine ecosystems. Her research interests include eutrophication, environmental monitoring and management in relation to human influences within the EU’s water and marine directives (WFD and MSFD). TH has great experience in applying satellite data in environmental monitoring and development of optical water quality indicators. Therese has previously worked at the University of Stockholm, Sweden and at WaterInsight, Holland.
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Steen W. Knudsen, Research Scientist (PhD), has a background in molecular biology, ichthyology, taxonomy, marine biology, population genetics, evolutionary relationship of fishes and environmental DNA (eDNA). Works with development of molecular diagnostic tools to identify presence of species in aquatic environments via non-invasive sampling techniques.

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JesJes Jessen Rasmussen Researcher Scientist (PhD). JR’s academic career integrates approximately ten years of research entirely dedicated to the field of stream ecology. During PhD and early postgraduate years his main scientific focus was quantifying contaminant effects on stream macrofauna and associated ecosystem processes and was based on mesocosm experiments and field surveys. During the past five years, he has increasingly broadened his scientific interests and competences towards other organism groups and human pressures relevant for stream management (e.g. hydromorphology and habitat quality). He has worked on multiple governmental advisory projects ranging from technical guidance documents to constructing new ecological indicators and producing various decision support systems addressing Water Framework Directive management needs. As such, all his research and governmental advisory projects are centered around applied aspects of freshwater ecology and ecotoxicology.

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1568108138981Paulina Ramirez-Monsalve, Research Scientist (PhD).  Interdisciplinary researcher in ocean- and nature-human relations (environmental engineering, qualitative research methods, policy and legal analysis).  Main research interests include stakeholder involvement, policy development and policy implementation processes, primarily focusing on European Union’s nature and marine policies (i.e. Water Framework Directive, Natura2000, Marine Strategy Framework Directive, Maritime Spatial Planning) and understanding how they are implemented especially from an institutional and governance perspective.

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Paula Ocampo, BSc, and vocational trainee from RUC, where she studies environmental biology. PO has worked with large datasets and the CHASE tool. PO is employed as a research assistant in NIVA Denmark.

SimonRedigeretSimon Andresen ÖzkanBSc in water, bioresources and environmental management from DTU. Currently on his master in Environmental technology at DTU. SÖ is employed a as student assistant in NIVA Denmark.


Nikolai Friberg, (PhD). Former head of research and department at NIVA Denmark. Now deputy managing director at the Norwegian Institute for Natural Research (NINA), also adjunct professor at the University of Copenhagen. NF has more than 25 years of research experience within freshwater ecology, including climate change and nature and environmental restoration. NF has worked in Denmark and abroad and has focused on the application-oriented aspects, especially how human activities affect freshwater communities. NF is Appointed Expert for the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) under UNESCO and also Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Leeds, England. From 2009 until 2011, when Denmark’s Environmental Investigations (DMU) was closed down, NF was head of research for the Department of Freshwater Ecology (FEVØ).

1517577196696Jørgen Nørrevang Jensen, (PhD). JNJ has previously worked at the National Environmental Research Institute (NERI) and the International Council for the Exploration of the Seas (ICES). JNJ helps us in relation to various R&D projects and Integrated Assessments – mostly with a focus on fish and softbottom invertebrates.

1525088455840 (1)Kathrine Hammer, (PhD). KH is a freshwater biologist from University of Copenhagen and has previously worked as a research Assistant at NIVA Denmark. She now work for Gladsaxe Municipality’s Environmental Division and is also associated with NIVA Denmark on an ad hoc basis.


Mathias Kjeldgaard, PhD student at NIVA with a focus on nature-based solutions in watercourses. MK has previously worked as a scientific assistant and student assistant in NIVA Denmark and can, as needed, support various R&D activities in NIVA Denmark.

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