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Academic Staff

Dr José Constantine

Earth’s surface rapidly responds to sudden shifts in climate in ways that affect the flux of sediment and nutrients from catchments to the sea. This response can fundamentally alter the evolution of floodplains, which cover over a million square kilometres of Earth’s surface and are some of the most biologically productive and diverse landforms on the planet. Despite their considerable ecological and societal importance, outstanding questions remain regarding their origin along the majority of rivers that meander across the landscape. Research into the origin of floodplains has been made even more urgent given recent developments to mitigate flood risk along managed rivers by restoring the natural dynamics responsible for the evolution of floodplains, dynamics that enhance topographic complexity important to sustained habitat diversity. Successful efforts to ensure sustainable floodplain habitat in the context of global change require reliable predictions of floodplain development as directly influenced by both physical and biological processes.

My research is focused on deciphering the controls on these processes in an effort to derive theory to explain the development of riparian habitat along meandering rivers across a range of geographic settings. My research also involves the use of sedimentation records stored within floodplains and coastal environments to decipher the environmental impacts of natural and anthropogenic disturbances. Such records of environmental change provide tremendous opportunity for understanding how Earth's surface adjusts to fluctuations in climate and land use.

I am eager to share my passion of geomorphology and have plentiful experience in training and supervising young scientists in their efforts to understand the controls on the evolution of Earth’s surface.