Catarina Guerreiro was born in 1978 in Cascais (Portugal), a small coastal town west of Lisbon, where her connection with the ocean started to grow from an early age. It was during her Geology graduation years (University of Lisbon) that she discovered a strong curiosity for the environmental stories hidden in sedimentary rocks, in particular those fossil-enriched and formed in marine environments. After graduating (in 2003) she discovered the enormous potential of using coccolithophores as indicators of (paleo)environmental variability and of paleoceanographical processes. Her first experience dealing with this fossil group was in the context of the national projects ENVICHANGES and CANAL, at the Geology Centre of the University of Lisbon (2003-2005). Later, she worked for several years at the Portuguese Hydrographic Institute where she could complement her geology background with knowledge in phytoplankton ecology, physical oceanography, sedimentary dynamics and seafloor geomorphology (2006-2013). Since 2004, she has participated in several scientific cruises on board Portuguese, Dutch, German and British research vessels, in the framework of Portuguese and European projects focused on exploring the deep-water sedimentary and ecological environments and dynamics of the European continental margins and the open-ocean subtropical and tropical North Atlantic.
Catarina is a post-doctoral researcher with 12 years' experience focusing on the palaeobiology and geological applications of coccolithophores (calcareous nannoplankton). Her PhD research, conducted at the University of Lisbon (2009-2013) has contributed to the knowledge of coccolithophores from coastal-neritic-oceanic transitional settings, its distribution offshore central Portugal, and its potential as paleoecological and paleoceanographic proxy in the context of coastal submarine canyons. Since 2015 she is working at the University of Bremen (Germany), applying coccolithophores as indicators of ocean fertilization induced by atmospheric fluxes of Saharan dust in the tropical North Atlantic. Her present work is embedded in three larger multidisciplinary projects, DUSTTRAFFIC, TRAFFIC and the Cape Blanc Long-Term Monitoring Program, funded by the European Research Council (ERC), the Dutch Science Foundation and the MARUM (Center for Marine Environmental Sciences), respectively.