Our Geography and Environmental Studies submission consisted of 18.4 FTE staff, an increase from 11 in 2014.
Targeted investment in our research strengths has helped us to increase our external income by 320%, quadruple the number of research outputs in peer-reviewed journals, and increase the number of our PhD students by over 150%.
We have increased our international engagement, developing collaborations in over 60 countries. This has allowed us to increase internationally-sourced research funding from 5% to 20% of our total income.
Results in REF 2021
- 53% of our overall research quality was rated as world-leading or internationally excellent in terms of originality, significance and rigour.
- 58.7% of our research outputs were rated as world-leading or internationally excellent in terms of originality, significance and rigour.
- 50% of our impact case studies were rated as outstanding in terms of their reach and significance.
Our research is structured across two multi-disciplinary research groups that provide intellectual and organisational focus and connect with the University's research themes.
Environmental Processes and Impacts has established critical mass in climate science, with particular expertise in paleo-environmental reconstruction, and climate change in alpine and glacial environments. We have published highly cited research papers on mountain climate change, the contribution of small glaciers in Greenland to sea-level rise, and using tephra (volcanic ash) deposited in sediments, to help date past changes in environments around the world.
Culture, Society and Governance has established strengths in geographies of health and wellbeing, and historical geography. We have extended our wellbeing focus, adding expertise on children and young people in Sub-Saharan Africa, securing succession in health geography, and extending expertise in economic development. As a coastal university, we have also built research strengths in coastal environments and marine environmental management, linking with the Centre for Blue Governance which has acted as a focus for interaction with our own local communities on the South Coast.
Impact case studies
We submitted two impact case studies, demonstrating the reach and significance of our research:
Collaborations and partnerships
- Helmholtz Centre, Potsdam
- Chinese Academy of Sciences
- St Louis University, USA
- Office for National Statistics
- International agencies, including the UN International Organisation for Migration and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees
- Charities, such as Action Against Hunger
- NGOs, including PRACTICA Foundation and the WASH Alliance
- South Downs National Park Authority
Infrastructure and facilities
- Institute of Marine Sciences
- Earth Surface Materials Laboratory: atomic absorption spectrometer, laser particle size analyser, flume, rainfall simulator, and ion chromatograph
- Tephra analysis (muffle furnaces, centrifuge, polishing machine, micro-manipulator)
- Coring equipment (Russian peat corer, gravity corer (lake sediments))
- Scanning electron microscopes with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, an inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometer, and an X-ray fluorescence spectrometer.
- Extensive meteorological/data logging equipment
- Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler
- Field survey including two differential GPS (Leica), 20 micron 3D laser scanner (for non-invasive field measurement of earth surfaces), Ground penetrating radar, drone technology (UAV)