Domenico D’Alelio is an evolutionary ecologist focusing on water systems.
He got his master’s degree cum laude in environmental sciences with specialization in oceanography at Parthenope Università di Napoli (Italy) on 2003 and his PhD degree in phytoplankton biology at Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn Napoli (Italy) on 2008. During his PhD studentship, he co-coordinated a work package of the European Commission Project SEED focusing on the ecology of Harmful Algal Blooms. On 2008-2009, he moved to Seconda Università di Napoli (Caserta, Italy), doing both academic lecturing on marine biology and scientific research on the ecology of benthic microcommunities thanks to an individual grant given by Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei (Rome, Italy). Between 2009 and 2012, he worked as a post-doc at Fondazione Edmund Mach (S. Michele all’Adige, Trento, Italy) and contributed in establishing a research line on the molecular ecology of freshwater harmful cyanobacteria in the frame of the ACE-SAP Project funded by the Province of Trento. On 2013, he moved back to Stazione Zoologica, where he still works being part of the local team of the Italian Flagship Project Ritmare, with the main goal of integrating biological complexity within marine biogeochemical models by pursuing an end-to-end ecosystem perspective.
The main scientific interest of Domenico D’Alelio is studying plankton ecology by explicitly considering the evolutionary histories of species and the interactions between them. In his career, he authored twenty peer-reviewed articles dealing with organismal biology, demography, community assembly and systems ecology and coordinated publications falling into fairly different methodological fields, from microbiology and molecular biology to statistics and modelling. In the very last years, he started applying network methods to plankton studies pertaining both ecological and evolutionary domains. The Gulf of Naples is the main case study to this respect, but he is also extending the above-mentioned approach to other systems (e.g., the Lagune of Venice). The main scientific achievements of Domenico D’Alelio are i) revealing supply-side ecological factors affecting population dynamics of phytoplankton lacking resting stages; ii) revealing alternative modes of population evolution in phytoplankton comparable to those present in pathogens; iii) quantifying the impact of plankton trophic-diversity on ecosystem functioning.
Domenico D’Alelio is member of the Presidential Council of AIOL (2015-2017) and of the Science Communication working group of the Long Term Ecological Research Network in Italy. He is member of the Association for the Studies of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO) since ten years. He is also a science communicator, writer and performer, with the main achievements being i) leading the organization of LTER Italy science bike-tours since 2015 and ii) being awarded of the ASLO Global Outreach Initiative 2016.