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  • Visiting Informal Academic
  • Visiting Fellow
  • Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics
  • School of Environment, Earth & Ecosystem Sciences
  • marie-laure.bagard

Professional biography

I am a Post Doctoral Research Associate specialising in low-temperature isotope geochemistry. I have been working in the Environment, Earth & Ecosystems department since October 2013, within the Palaeoenvironmental Change Research Group.

My research is focused on understanding present and past geochemical surface processes and their interplay with climate. At the OU, I am currently working on the NERC-funded research project “Response of Global Ocean Oxygenation to Early Cenozoic Climate Extremes.


Ph.D. in Environmental Geochemistry (Oct. 2010), University of Strasbourg, France  Title: Geochemical and multi-isotopic study of Siberian watersheds. Sources of dissolved chemical fluxes and characterization of soil-water-plant chemical transfers in a permafrost environment (Advisors: F. Chabaux, O.S. Pokrovsky)

Previous Appointments

  • Mar. 2013 – Aug. 2013 Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Strasbourg, France
  • Apr. 2011 - Dec. 2012 Post Doctoral Research Associate, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, USA
  • Oct. 2009 - Dec. 2010 Research and Teaching Fellow, University of Strasbourg, France
  • Oct. 2006 - Oct. 2009 Teaching Assistant, University of Strasbourg, France


Research interests

My main research interests are in understanding geological processes that control environmental conditions at the surface of the Earth by developing and using chemical and isotopic proxies, particularly non-traditional stable isotope systems. My current projects focus on comprehending modern and past environments and on investigating the distribution of isotopes in nature and the biogeochemical mechanisms that fractionate these isotopes. This specifically includes:

  • Determining past levels of global seawater oxygenation. I am currently working on establishing a multi-proxy (Mo, Re and U stable isotopes) record of global ocean oxygenation spanning the large climatic gradient of the Early Cenozoic (56-25 Ma). The combination of proxies with different residence times in the ocean and different sensitivities to oxygen concentration in seawater will allow us to refine our knowledge of past global seawater oxygenation variations and to get a better understanding of the dominant factors driving episodes of oceanic anoxia.


  • Investigating the potential of Li isotopes as tracers for weathering processes. Li isotopes show major fractionation during the weathering of continental silicate minerals as the lighter isotope is preferentially retained in clay minerals. Variations in Li isotope signatures in the surface environment can thus provide us with crucial information on present and past clay production and thus weathering rates, which are intrinsically related to climate. I have investigated Li fractionation processes both at the scale of water-rock interactions in the Strengbach watershed (OHGE, Vosges Mountains, France), and at the continental scale by studying Li signatures of groundwater discharge to the Bay of Bengal. I am also interested in developing the potential of Li isotopes as a proxy for quantifying past weathering processes.


  • Tracing chemical fluxes in permafrost regions. Boreal regions probably will be among the areas most sensitive to climate change. The destabilisation of the permafrost, in particular, will lead to major environmental disruptions. Thus, it is critical to understand the functioning of permafrost ecosystems so we can identify their response to global warming. I have studied the watershed of the Nizhnaya Tunguska (main tributary of the Yenisei river) in Central Siberia where I investigated the sources and pathways of dissolved chemical fluxes, the biogeochemical cycling of elements, and soil dynamics using a wide range of isotopic tools such as Sr and Ca isotopes and U-series disequilibria.


Lithium isotope fractionation in the Ganges-Brahmaputra floodplain and implications for groundwater impact on seawater isotopic composition (2015-12-15)
Bagard, Marie-Laure; West, A. Joshua; Newman, Karla and Basu, Asish R.
Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 432 (pp. 404-414)
Biogeochemistry of stable Ca and radiogenic Sr isotopes in a larch-covered permafrost-dominated watershed of Central Siberia (2013-08-01)
Bagard, Marie-Laure; Schmitt, Anne-Désirée; Chabaux, Francois; Pokrovsky, Oleg S.; Viers, Jérôme; Stille, Peter; Labolle, François and Prokushkin, Anatoly S.
Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 114 (pp. 169-187)
Seasonal variability of element fluxes in two Central Siberian rivers draining high latitude permafrost dominated areas (2011-06-15)
Bagard, Marie-Laure; Chabaux, François; Pokrovsky , Oleg S.; Viers, Jérome; Prokushkin , Anatoly S.; Stille, Peter; Rihs, Sophie; Schmitt, Anne-Désirée and Dupré, Bernard
Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 75(12) (pp. 3335-3357)
The impact of water-rock interaction and vegetation on calcium isotope fractionation in soil- and stream waters of a small, forested catchment (the Strengbach case) (2009-04-15)
Cenki-Tok, B.; Chabaux, F.; Lemarchand, D.; Schmitt, A.-D.; Pierret , M.-C.; Viville, D.; Bagard, M.-L. and Stille, P.
Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 73(8) (pp. 2215-2228)
The vital aspects of reconstructing seawater Li isotope composition: insights from modern shells and cultured organisms (2015-08-20)
Dellinger, M.; West, A. J.; Adkins, J. F.; Paris, G.; Freitas, P. S.; Bagard, M.-L.; Eagle, R.; Ries, J. and Corsetti, F.
In : Goldschmidt Conference 2015 (16-21 August 2015, Prague, Czech Republic)
Evaluating δ238/235U records in mudrocks as a proxy for ocean oxygenation during the Early Eocene (2015-08)
Bagard, M.-L.; Dickson, A. J.; Davies, M. K. and Cohen, A. S.
In : Goldschmidt Conference 2015 (16-21 August 2015, Prague, Czech Republic)
Recent evolution of permafrost soils: insight from U-Th series nuclides (2015-04)
Bagard, Marie-Laure; Chabaux , François; Rihs, Sophie; Pokrovsky, Oleg and Viers, Jérome
In : EGU General Assembly 2015 (12-17 April 2015, Vienna, Austria)
Multi proxy reconstruction (δ98/95Mo, δ238/235U) of global ocean oxygenation during the Early Eocene (2014-12)
Bagard, Marie-Laure; Davies, Marc; Dickson, Alexander and Cohen, Anthony
In : AGU Fall Meeting (15-19 December 2014, San Francisco, CA, USA)
Basalt weathering and plant recycling in permafrost-bearing watersheds of Central Siberia: A multi-isotope approach (Si, Mg, Ca, Zn, and Cu) (2014-06-09)
Pokrovsky, O. S.; Viers, J.; Prokushkin, A. S.; Mavromatis, V.; Bagard, M.-L. and Chabaux, F.
In : Goldschmidt Conference 2014 (8-13 June 2014, Sacramento, U.S.A.)
Ca isotope fractionation in a permafrost-dominated boreal ecosystem (Kulingdakan watershed, Central Siberia) (2013-08-07)
Bagard, Marie-Laure; Schmitt, Anne-Desiree; Chabaux , Francois; Pokrovsky, Oleg S.; Viers , Jerome; Stille , Peter; Labolle, Francois and Prokushkin, Anatoly S.
In : Goldschmidt Conference 2013 (25-30 Aug 2013, Florence (Italy)) (p 641)
Long- and short-lived nuclide constraints on the recent evolution of permafrost soils (2011-12)
Bagard, M.; Chabaux, F.; Rihs , S.; Pokrovsky, O.; Prokushkin, A. S. and Viers, J.
In : American Geophysical Union, Fall Meeting 2011 (5-9 December 2011, San Francisco, CA, USA)
Calcium isotopic compositions as tracers of vegetation activity in boreal permafrost ecosystems (Kulingdakan watershed, Central Siberia) (2010-12)
Bagard, M.; Schmitt , A.; Chabaux, F.; Viers, J.; Prokrovsky, O.; Prokushkin, A. S.; Stille, P. and Dupré, B.
In : 2010 AGU Fall Meeting (13-17 December 2010, San Francisco, CA, USA)
Origines et variations saisonnières des flux dissous transportés par les rivières boréales: exemple de la Nizhnyaya Tunguska et de la Kochechum (Sibérie Centrale) (2010-11)
Bagard, Marie-Laure; Chabaux, François; Pokrovsky, Oleg S.; Viers, Jérôme; Prokushkin, Anatoly ; Rihs, Sophie and Dupré, Bernard
In : 23ème Réunion des Sciences de la Terre (25-29 October 2010, Bordeaux, France)
Sources of colloidal and dissolved loads over the hydrological cycle in Siberian rivers (2010-06)
Bagard, M. L.; Chabaux, F.; Pokrovsky, O. S.; Prokushkin, A. S.; Viers, J.; Derenne, S. and Templier, J.
In : Goldschmidt 2010: Earth, Energy and the Environment (13-18 June 2010, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA) (A40)
Origin of chemical fluxes carried by boreal rivers : evidence from major, and trace element, U and Sr isotope data in two Siberian rivers (2009-06)
Bagard, M. L.; Chabaux, F.; Pokrovsky, O. S.; Prokushkin, A. S.; Viers, J.; Derenne, S.; Templier, J. and Dupre, B.
In : Goldschmidt 2009: Challenges to Our Volatile Planet (21-26 June 2009, Davos, Switzerland)
Temporal variations of geochemical fluxes in boreal rivers in permafrost context: trace element and Sr and U isotope data (Nizhnaya Tunguska Watershed - Central Siberia) (2008-12)
Chabaux, F.; Bagard, M.; Pokrovsky, O.; Viers, J.; Prokushkin, A. S. and Dupré, B.
In : 2008 AGU Fall Meeting (15-19 Decemeber 2008, San Francisco, CA, USA)
Seasonal variations of chemical composition of soil porewaters, streams and rivers in basaltic watersheds of central Siberia: the origin of river dissolved load in the permafrost zone (2008-12)
Viers, J.; Prokushkin, A. S.; Pokrovsky , O.; Bagard, M.; Chabaux, F. and Dupré, B.
In : 2008 AGU Fall Meeting (15-19 Decemeber 2008, San Francisco, CA, USA)
Temporal variations of chemical weathering fluxes in boreal rivers under permafrost conditions. Example of the Nizhnaya Tunguska watershed (Central Siberia) (2008-04)
Bagard, M. L.; Chabaux, F.; Pokrovsky , O. S.; Prokushkin, A. S.; Viers, J. and Dupré, B.
In : EGU General Assembly 2008 (13-18 April 2008, Vienna, Austria)
Origin of calcium isotope fractionation in river waters: evidence from the Strengbach catchment, France (2007-08)
Cenki-Tok, B.; Chabaux, F.; Lemarchand, D.; Stille, P.; Bagard, M.-L. and Pierret, M.-C.
In : Goldschmidt Conference 2007: Atoms to Planets (19-24 August 2007, Cologne, Germany)