The last 100 years have witnessed serious pressures on mountain environments arising from the combined effects of climate and human forcing. In terms of natural processes, this timescale remains a critical challenge for three reasons.
First, it contains a significant stochastic component that has to be separated from climate or human drivers.
Second, it requires careful experimental design to separate out direct human impacts from natural processes such as climatic variability.
Third, there are important and often overlooked feedbacks in response to climate and human forcing, such as in ecosystem response, which can in turn both accelerate or slow landscape change. In some cases, understanding this ecosystem response is important in its own right so as to secure a sound scientific basis for ecosystem protection and restoration.
We approach these questions through a combination of state of the art technologies, notably in remote sensing, with the study of particular field environments and numerical modelling.
Our research includes both fundamental research topics, such as flow, sediment transfer and ecological processes in rivers, and more applied research questions, such as how human-induced climate change and human activities such as hydroelectricity, impact upon landscape form and process, and how to improve environmental restoration.
We have a particular interest in democratizing the practice of the science that we do.