Skip to main content
Sandra Brucet

Sandra Brucet

Universitat de Vic - Universitat Central de Catalunya

Experimental Sciences & Mathematics

Since 2015 I am an ICREA Research professor at University of Vic and Coordinator of the Aquatic Ecology Group (GEA). I hold a PhD in Biology (2003) from University of Girona (Spain). After my PhD I was a postdoc at the University of Oslo (2006) and the National Environmental Institute of Denmark (2006-2008). From 2009 to 2012, I worked as a research scientist at the European Commission-Joint Research Centre (Italy). I passed European Commission full competitions for Research Administrators (AD5 and AD7). In 2013, I was awarded a Marie Curie Intra European Senior Fellowship to work at the University of Aarhus (Denmark) for two years. In 2013, I was also a Visiting Scientist at the Middle East Technical University, Turkey. In 2021, the researchers from the Center for the Study of Mediterranean Rivers (CERM) joined our GEA research group that now has 16 members.

Research interests

Our research focuses on the response of aquatic ecosystems and their biodiversity to global changes (e.g. eutrophication, habitat destruction, climate change). We use the organisms’ size structure, in combination with taxonomical approaches, to assess biodiversity and ecosystem processes. We are also interested in basic and applied aspects of ecological theories relating organisms’ body size, metabolism and temperature. Our research includes the whole trophic structure from phytoplankton to fish. We focus on different aquatic ecosystems (lakes, rivers, ponds) and use complementary approaches such as experiments, latitudinal comparisons and models. Another important line of research is the study of the biodiversity and functioning of ponds ecosystems. Within this line I am coordinating the EU H2020 project PONDERFUL with the main objective to use pond ecosystems as Nature Based Solutions to mitigate and adapt to climate change and to protect biodiversity. Ultimately, we aim to apply our research results to solving problems related with the conservation of aquatic ecosystems. We also pay particular attention at transferring our knowledge into European policies and platforms (e.g. Water Framework Directive, Biodiversity Strategy, IPBES) and the general public.

Selected publications

– Mehner T, Argillier C, Hesthagen T, Holmgren K, Jeppesen E, Kelly, F, Krause T, Olin, M, Volta P, Winfield I & Brucet S 2021, ‘Model-based decomposition of environmental, spatial and species-interaction effects on the community structure of common fish species in 772 European lakes‘, Global Ecology And Biogeography, vol. 30, pp 1558-1571.

– Braun L.M, Brucet S, Mehner T 2021, ‘Top-down and bottom-up effects on zooplankton size distribution in a deep stratified lake‘, Aquatic Ecology, vol. 55, pp 527–543.

– Arranz I, Brucet S, Bartrons M, García-Comas C, Benejam L 2021, ‘Fish size spectra are affected by nutrient concentration and relative abundance of non-native species across streams of the NE Iberian Peninsula‘, Science of the Total Environment, 795, 148792.

– Parra G, Guerrero F, Armengol J, Brendonck L, Brucet S, Finlayson CM, Gomes-Barbosa L, Grillas P, Jeppesen E, Ortega F, Vega R, Zohary, T 2021, ‘The future of temporary wetlands in drylands under global change‘, Inland Waters, vol. 11, pp 445-456.

– Vidal N, Yu J, Gutierrez MF, de Mello FT, Tavsanoglu UN, Çakiroglu AI, He H, Meerhoff M, Brucet S, Liu Z, Jeppesen E. 2021. ‘Salinity shapes food webs of lakes in semiarid climate zones: a stable isotope approach‘, Inland Waters, vol. 11, pp 476-491.

– Mehner T & Brucet S 2021. ‘Structure of fish communities in lakes and its abiotic and biotic determinants‘. In: Reference Module in Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences, Elsevier.

Selected research activities

Coordinator PONDERFUL project: Pond ecosystems for resilient future landscapes in a changing climate. EU Horizon 2020. 6,993,407€.

Co-IP SizeEcoFun: Size-based approaches to understand impacts on river ecosystem functioning. Spanish Ministry of Science and Technology.

Co-IP FISHSIZE: Analysing size-density relationships of aquatic communities in response to strength of predator-prey interactions and resource subsidy. German Research Foundation.

Scientific Committee of Shallow Lake Conference 2021

Plenary talk at PONDERFUL launch event


ICREA Memoir 2021