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Joana Maria Mendonça Marques

Joana Maria Mendonça Marques


Member type
CIBIO-InBIO, Universidade do Porto, Campus de Vairão, Rua Padre Armando Quintas, 4485-661 Vairão, Portugal

I am a lichenologist with a broad interest in lichen ecology, diversity and systematics, focusing primarily on lichen-induced weathering processes in natural environments, with the conservation of stone and other rock surfaces in cultural settings as target application. 

During my PhD, under the supervision of Dr. Rubim Almeida (CIBIO-InBIO) and Dr. Graciela Paz-Bermúdez (University of Vigo), I have focused my research on three specific themes, namely: i) Diversity and ecology of saxicolous and terricolous lichens of schistose environments in the Upper Douro region (north-east Portugal); ii) Taxonomy of the European taxa in lichen genus Peltula; iii) Lichen contributions to differential weathering of schist and open-air rock-art deterioration in the Côa Valley Archaeological Park (a UNESCO world heritage site). As a result, I have greatly improved my lichen identification skills, and acquired experience in several state-of-the-art analytical techniques, namely X-ray fluorescence (XRF), X-ray microdiffraction (XRMD) and Raman spectroscopy. 

My current research interests are highly interdisciplinary and involve studies at the interface of lichenology (ecology, diversity and systematics) with geology, environmental chemistry and conservation of cultural heritage. I am specifically interested in: i) Quantifying lichen contribution to biogeochemical and (micro)-geomorphological processes (biodeterioration vs. bioprotection); ii) Predicting the impact of lichen activity as well as the synergic effects of lichen activity and environmental change in these processes; iii) Applying risk analysis methods in the context of cultural heritage conservation assessments, linked to lichen diversity conservation in both natural and cultural settings.

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