Alan Jamieson

Marine biologist and deep ocean explorer
Alan Jamieson is a scientist and explorer of the deep sea. He specializes in the deepest ecosystems on Earth, known as the Hadal zone, where the ocean extends from 6 km deep to nearly 11 km (3.7 to 6.8 miles deep).

Why you should listen

Alan Jamieson's research is centered around discovering new species, establishing true depth ranges of animals, the ecology of these ecosystems and the relationship with the underlying habitats and geological processes. To do this, he uses a combination of ship-mounted echosounders to map the seafloor, unmanned baited camera systems called landers, and diving in a 2-crewed full-ocean-depth-rated submersible to explore these deepest parts of the ocean in person.

His research highlights include discovering the deepest fish, eel, octopus, squid, jellyfish and shrimp, among others. His research has also highlighted various forms of contaminants, from microplastics to chemicals to litter, in many of the deepest places in the world. His longer-term ambition is to blur the lines between the ‘deep’ sea and the rest of the ocean to challenge the narrative on how we communicate the deep sea to wider audiences.

He is currently the director of the Minderoo-UWA Deep-Sea Research centre at the University of Western Australia, Perth, and co-host of the Deep-Sea Podcast.

Alan Jamieson’s TED talk