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Abstract

This paper highlights the potential of combining (organic) geochemical proxies with dinoflagellate cyst studies. Firstly, such a multiproxy approach is a powerful tool for palaeoceanography and for providing insights into the natural variability of the climate system in the past. Geochemical proxies have the advantage of providing absolute estimates for environmental variables, but the importance of assemblage studies is especially highlighted here because fossil assemblages are excellent indicators of large-scale changes in surface water masses such as shifts of ocean currents. Secondly, the geochemical proxies can also be exploited to determine the environmental preferences of individual species. Until now, only the temperature preference of extant and extinct dinoflagellate cyst species in fossil assemblages has been investigated by comparing them directly to geochemical proxy. Finally, an integrated geochemical and palynological approach is useful for biostratigraphy because it can improve the existing biozonations, provide chronostratigraphic calibration and/or aid in identifying stage boundaries.

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