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Environmental Dynamics

Members of Environmental Dynamics Domain

Academic Staff

 Dr George Adamson

Research activities:

Reconstruction of historical-period (i.e. last 500 years) climate dynamics in the tropics, particularly the Indian and southern African monsoons and El Nino Southern Oscillation. History and culture of climate knowledge production.

Research environments: Indian monsoon and associated hazards, southern African rainfall, Indian ocean cyclones, Climate and society in the ‘Indian Ocean World’, El Nino dynamics, teleconnections, social impacts and social construction.

Countries: India, South Africa, Madagascar, Malawi, USA, central Pacific.

Future research priorities: Methodological improvements in climate reconstruction from documentary sources, including integration with models and palaeoclimatological methods. Generation of new historical climate series for data-poor regions of the tropics.

Current research projects: El Nino Southern Oscillation and geographies of knowledge, LANDSLIP: Landslide multi-hazard risk assessment, preparedness and early warning in South Asia, Atmospheric Circulation Reconstructions over the Earth (ACRE)

Dr Andreas Baas

Research Activities

 Aeolian geomorphology, in particular the processes and mechanisms of sand transport by wind, from sand grain scale to landscape scale; dynamics of turbulence and wind-blown sand; interactions between sand transport and vegetation and resulting deposition and erosion in dunes; dune formation and development in deserts and in coastal environments, eco-geomorphology of vegetated dunes. Related interests in the philosophy and science of computer modelling of Earth surface landscapes, chaos and self-organisation in non-linear systems.

Research environments: deserts and coastal sedimentary environments around the world, agricultural fields

Countries: UK, Ireland, Netherlands, Brazil, USA, Mars

Future research priorities: practical application of wind-blown sand transport models; soil erosion by wind under future climatic change.

Current research projects: wind-blown sand transport by boundary layer turbulence; transformation of dunes linked to vegetation changes; advanced time-series analysis techniques for non-linear association of wind and sand transport; large-scale particle image velocimetry of aeolian streamers.

Michael Chadwick

Research Activities

Research activities: Aquatic ecology, conservation of fish and macroinvertebrates; invasive species, urban rivers, river/estuary transition zones, peatland ecology, ecosystems function including organic matter dynamics, nutrient cycles and secondary production,social and ecological dynamics of changing rivers.

Research environments: Urban Rivers, Tropical Stream, River/estuary transitions zones, Peatlands,
Countries:  UK, India, Borneo

Future research priorities: Evaluating ecosystems function and structure
in the Thames Catchment, Quantifying ecological improvements from river
restoration, Rivers of Temburong, Brunei. Biogeochemistry of Southeast Asia peatland.

Current research projects: River/Estuary Biodiversity, River Biotopes of Temburong, Ecosystem function of invasive species in the Thames Catchment, Biogeochemistry of River Restoration

Professor Terry Dawson

Research Activities

Complex Systems and Earth Systems Science; Biogeography; Evaluating environmental change and anthropogenic impacts on landscapes and marine ecosystems, biodiversity and natural resources, food security and ecosystem services; Development of remote sensing, GIS and modelling tools for studying and understanding biodiversity, sustainability development and the interaction between climate change and social-ecological systems.

Research environments: Small Island Developing States (SIDS), Tropical Forests, Coastal and marine environments, Global,

Countries: Colombia, Peru, Malawi, Madagascar, Pitcairn Islands

Future research priorities: Food security and ecosystem services, Conservation and protected areas, Poverty and development.

Current research projects: A Sustainable Marine and fisheries Management Plan for the Pitcairn Islands, Global Observatory of Lake Responses to Environmental Change (GloboLakes), Attaining Sustainable Services from Ecosystems through trade-off Scenarios (ASSETS).

Dr Amy Donovan

Research Activities
  •  Role of science in decision-making and policy in environmental hazard management and risk assessment
  • Philosophy and sociology of advisory science
  • Sociology of risk Igneous petrology
  • Volcanic gas chemistry and ground-based remote

Professor Nick Drake

Research Activities

Remote sensing, GIS, spatial modeling, geomorphology, geoarchaeology and environmental change. Using remote sensing to study studying river, dust and sand dune dynamics, landslides, land degradation and soil erosion. Employing remote sensing and GIS to map the palaeohydrology of arid regions; using this information to locate geomorphological sites of likely geoarchaeological interest; and investigating them using field and laboratory methods in order to determine their paleaeo-environmental and archaeological significance.

Research Environments: Deserts and semi-deserts Saudi Arabia, Libya, Tunisia, Sudan, Nigeria. Rivers in south america and landslides in Europe.

Future research prioritie:

Mapping Saharo-Arabian paleohydrology and integrating this information with paleoclimate and archaeological data to evaluate models of climate change and human dispersals.

Current research projects: The Sahara Megalakes Project   |   Paleodeserts

Dr Robert Francis

Research Activities

Mapping and measurement of urban green and blue spaces and their biodiversity; trialling of ecological engineering techniques for enhancing the built environment (reconciliation ecology); landscape ecology and land use change; field and lab investigation into plant and sediment interactions and ecosystem engineering; invasive species distributions and management; nature-society interactions and implications for urban ecological communities; links between warfare and environmental harm.

Research environments: UK, Italy, SE Asia, urban and freshwater ecosystems.

Future research priorities: Quantification of urban green and blue infrastructure and its ecosystem services in global cities; determine the plastic budget of the River Thames and other urban rivers in London; examine spread and control of urban invasive species in global cities.

Current research projects: Living flood defence walls: reconciliation ecology in an urban estuary; landscape ecology of London’s green infrastructure; land use change around dam construction in SE Asia.

Margaret Kadiri

Research Activities

Sediment-nutrient interactions in estuaries; cycling of particle-associated contaminants in restored saltmarshes; water quality impacts of marine renewable energy extraction; applying risk assessment models in assessing the potential for eutrophication by nutrient enrichment in estuarine and coastal environments.

Research Environments: Estuarine and coastal environments; saltmarshes

Countries: UK

Future research priorities: Examining saltmarsh resilience to environmental change and how state shifts in saltmarsh distribution will be affected by future climate change; investigating the environmental drivers and patterns of saltmarsh expansion and erosion; determining whether saltmarsh vegetation diversity enhances the resilience of saltmarshes to erosion and disturbance

Current research projects: impacts of tidal renewable energy extraction on water quality and ecological processes in coastal environments; finding mitigating measures to minimize the risk of eutrophication by nutrient enrichment following tidal energy extraction along the Welsh coast.

 Professor Bruce Malamud

Research Activities

Natural & environmental hazards, including wildfires, earthquakes, landslides, floods tornadoes, multi-hazard interactions, hazard impacts on infrastructure and heavy-metal contamination. Observational and synthetic data are used for computational models,time-series analyses (e.g., persistence, spectral analysis, probability distributions) and visualization to different stakeholders

Research environments: Natural hazard impacted environments, with recent/current projects including regions in the UK, Italy, USA, Malawi, Zambia, Kenya, Guatemala.

Future research priorities: Multi-hazard research from a physical sciences perspective and better understanding of natural hazard interactions in regional and global perspectives. Impact of natural hazards on infrastructure. Time series, mathematical and computational models for understanding observational natural hazard data. Visualization, including of uncertainty.

Current research projects: Urban Africa Risk Knowledge (Urban ARK),  Susceptibility of catchments to INTense RAinfall and flooding (SINATR)

James Millington

Research Activities

Landscape succession-disturbance (fire) dynamics modelling, coupled human and natural systems for sustainability (forests and agriculture), agent-based modelling, natural hazards

Research environments: Mediterranean-Type Ecosystems, Northern Hardwood Forests of N. America, Urban and peri-Urban

Current research projects: Urban Africa Risk Knowledge (Urban ARK), Food Security and Land Use: The Telecoupling Challenge (Telecoupling)

Countries: United States, Spain, Malawi, Kenya

Future research priorities: modelling long-term landscape dynamics, use of agent-based modelling for understanding coupled human and natural systems, hazards in urban africa, land use and food security

Dr Mark Mulligan

Research Activities

Research activities: Spatial hydrological and ecological modelling focused on ecosystem services, water security, water resources management and conservation priority. Development and delivery of spatial policy support systems for water and ecosystem services. Integration of spatial models with remote sensing and low-cost field sensors.

Research environments: Mediterranean, Tropical Lowland Forests, Tropical Montane Cloud Forests,

Countries: Global, Colombia, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Madagascar

Future research priorities: Examining interaction of agriculture and ecosystem services. Ecosystem services of protected areas.  Tropical agricultural climate monitoring networks.

Current research projects: Targeting agricultural innovation and ecosystem service management in the Northern Volta, Can Paying for Global Ecosystem Services values reduce poverty?

Dr Daniel Schillereff

Research Activities

Lake and river sediment archives of historical floods; integrating palaeohydrological information into flood risk modelling; quantifying mining-derived trace metal contamination in aquatic ecosystems and trajectories towards system recovery; model and empirical investigations of slope-river channel-lake sediment transport; biogeochemical cycling in lakes and peatlands; artificial radionuclide inventories and Bayesian chronological modelling

Research Environments: Lakes, upland rivers, hillslopes, peatlands, mining-polluted aquatic environments

Countries: UK, Sweden, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Brunei Darussalam

Future research priorities: Devise methods and strategies to utilise palaeohydrological data in local and national flood risk forecasting; better understanding the role of and interaction between drivers of flooding in the UK – e.g., atmospheric rivers, North Atlantic Oscillation, solar radiation; identify and attempt to quantify anthropogenic drivers of macronutrient and carbon cycling in peatlands; calculating regional and national inventories of long-term trace metal contamination from abandoned mines; better quantification of 20th century 210Pb and artificial radionuclide inventories

Current research projects: Geomorphic and sedimentary testing of lacustrine palaeoflood records; Holocene environmental evolution and long-term nutrient dynamics in tropical peatlands; Isotopic discrimination of mining-derived aquatic trace metal contamination.

Dr Emma Tebbs

Research Activites

Remote sensing of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. The application of Earth Observation (EO) for sustainable development and biodiversity conservation. Development of indicators for the remote monitoring of natural capital and ecosystem services. Use of EO technology for assessing the sustainability of natural resources and for investigating the connections between ecological and hydrological processes.

Research environments: East Africa, inland waters, Rift Valley lakes, agricultural landscapes in temperate and tropical regions, agro-pastoral systems in semi-arid regions, peat swamp forests of Southeast Asia.

Future research priorities: Develop novel remotely-sensed products for monitoring biodiversity and habitat condition. Use remote sensing to investigate natural variability in water quality in Lake Turkana, Kenya, and evaluate the risks to the lake posed by the Gibe III dam. Quantify trajectories of land cover change in semi-arid regions in East Africa and investigate its impact on the ecosystem services available to local pastoralist communities.

Current research projects: Development of a high resolution Woody Cover Product for Great Britain, Remote sensing of vegetation productivity as an indicator of habitat condition,  Lake Turkana ecological/hydrological baseline

Professor Martin Wooster

Research Activities

Divisional Director & Principal Investigator within NERC National Centre for Earth Observation (NCEO), lead of King’s Wildfire Research Team, exploitation of satellite and airborne remote sensing and field spectroscopy, UAV’s, integrative study of biomass burning and its impacts on Earth’s atmosphere,  terrestrial environments and biogeochemical cycles, relations between fire and El Nino in SE Asia.

Research environments: Fire-affected ecosystems such as Boreal, Tropical, Temperate and Sub-tropical environments, including in North America, Africa, Asia.

Current research projects: Global Monitoring Atmospheric Composition and Climate / Copernicus Atmosphere Service, NEWTON China AgriTech - Climate Smart Agriculture, ESA Sentinel-3 satellite Fire Radiative Power products, NERC FireSiDE international consortium, EUMETSAT Land Surface Analysis Satellite Applications Facility (LSA SAF),

Future research priorities: exploitation of next generation ESA and EUMETSAT satellite EO missions for fire assessment, deployment of small UAV’s for environmental science measurements, enhancing close-range fire measurement capabilities, end-to-end improvements in our understanding of biomass burning emissions to the atmosphere (fire identification and measurement from satellite EO → fuel consumption conversion→ emissions produced).

Research Associates and Teaching Fellows

PhD Students

Please click here for the PhD students' pages.


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