I am a Physical Geographer whose research focuses on the investigation and reconstruction of past environments with particular emphasis on understanding abrupt climate change and Earth system response. In 2013 I joined the University of Portsmouth as a Lecturer in the Department of Geography.

Research interests

I have two main research specialisms both within the field of Quaternary Science:

1)     Geochronology – The key focus of my research is to augment the tephrostratigraphic framework of southern Europe during the Last Glacial Period and to test the synchronicity (or phasing) of the rapid environmental shifts which occurred during this timeframe. I also have a interest in using tephrochronology to test pre-existing age-depth models. I have expertise in detection of cryptotephra layers in sediment sequences, geochemical analysis and correlation of volcanic glass and the use of Bayesian statistics in integrating chronological datasets.  

2)     Wildfire in the Quaternary – My research assesses wildfires potential role in, and response to, rapid geomorphic and environmental events via charcoal analysis in both complex sediment sequences and high resolution palaeoenvironmental records. I have expertise in quantification, extraction and identification of charcoal fragments (both via optical microscopy and SEM).

Selected media coverage:

  • The case of the missing diamonds. [19/12/16]
  • Everything you thought you knew about extinction might be wrong. New York Post [20/12/16]
  • Study of California’s Channel Islands Hints at Early Human Use of Fire. Arizona Public Radio [23/06/16]
  • A fiery world aids the peopling of America. Homeland Security News Wire [24/05/16]
  • Neanderthals Didn’t Bite the Volcanic Dust. By Michael Balter. Science online news [23/07/12]
  • Mammoth-Killer Impact Rejected. By Richard A. Kerr. Science online news [30/08/10]
  • Signs of asteroid impact turn out to be fungus. By Tom Marshall. NERC PlanetEarth [14/07/10]
  • Fungi, Feces Show Comet Didn't Kill Ice Age Mammals? By John Roach. National Geographic online news [22/06/10]
  • Ash-free Spain could be emergency flight hub, p.14. The Times. [07/05/10]

Research supervision:

Dr Margarita Tsakiridou (PhD; 2016-2020): Refining our understanding of wildfire during the Last Glacial-Interglacial Transition in the British Isles, (first supervisor), University of Portsmouth.

Dr Paul Lincoln (Senior Research Associate; 2017-2018): Understanding past wildfire regimes in Britain, University of Portsmouth.

Matthew Currie (MRes; 2017-2018): Transport, behavior and breakdown of charcoal, (first supervisor), University of Portsmouth.

Amy Webb (MRes; 2018-2019): The History of Fire on Dartmoor, (first supervisor), University of Portsmouth.

Roy Payne (MRes; 2019-2020): Using FTIR to understand past fire intensity, (first supervisor), University of Portsmouth.

Scarlett Wharram (MRes; 2019-2020): Understanding historical wildfire trends in the UK, (first supervisor), University of Portsmouth.

Elina Vainio (MRes; 2020-2021): Quantifying Post-Fire vegetation regrowth of UK heathlands using LiDAR scanning, (first supervisor), University of Portsmouth.

Nadege Khedun-burgoine (MRes; 2020-2021): Refining our understanding Holocene wildfire trends in the UK, (first supervisor), University of Portsmouth.

Jack Hughes (MRes; 2021-2022): Producing the first charcoal morphotypes record for the Last Glacial-Interglacial Transition in southern England, (first supervisor), University of Portsmouth.