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Vivi Vajda

Earth’s crises under the microscope – biodiversity and climate through deep time

I am a Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences Research Fellow supported by a grant from the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation

My project uses high-resolution palynological (pollen) analysis of sediments, and a broad spectrum of geochemical procedures to resolve the timing, rates, and causes of Life’s most profound catastrophes.

Causal hypotheses for other extinction events in history of life are tested using methodologies successfully employed by my research team over the past four years on the Cretaceous-Paleogene (KT) mass-extinction event. The now rather well-resolved patterns of biotic extinction and recovery at the KT boundary provide a model system for interpreting biotic turnover during other crises for life on Earth. Further, climate change during longer time intervals are assessed by interpreting the relation between vegetation and climate change during the Miocene in Scandinavia.

Selected publications

Vajda, V., Raine, I. & Hollis., C. (2001): Indication of Global deforestation at the Cretaceous-Tertiary Boundary by New Zealand Fernspike. Science 294, 1700-1702.

Vajda, V. & McLoughlin, S. (2004): Fungal Proliferation at the Cretaceous-Tertiary Boundary. Science 294, 489.

Vajda, V. & McLoughlin, S. (2007). Extinction and recovery patterns of the vegetation across Cretaceous–Palaeogene boundary — a tool for unravelling the causes of the end-Permian mass-extinction. , Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology 144, 99-112.

Wigforss-Lange, J., Vajda, V., Ocampo, A., 2007. Rare earth elements (REE) and other trace element concentrations in proximal Chicxulub ejecta deposits from northern Belize – support for a single-impact scenario. Meteoritics and Planetary Science 42, 11.

For further information see homepage


Retrieved from Lund University's publications database

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Vivi Vajda
E-mail: vivi.vajda [at]


Lithosphere and Biosphere Science

+46 46 222 98 86

+46 73 386 11 95