Dr Josie Geris

Dr Josie Geris
Dr Josie Geris

Dr Josie Geris

Senior Lecturer


University of Aberdeen School of Geosciences St Mary's Building, Room 125 Elphinstone Road Aberdeen AB24 3UF United Kingdom



  • 2019- : Senior Lecturer in Hydrology at the Northern Rivers Institute, School of Geosciences, University of Aberdeen (leave: August 2019 - May 2020)
  • 2014-2019: Lecturer in Hydrology at the Northern Rivers Institute, School of Geosciences, University of Aberdeen (leave: September 2015 - March 2016)
  • 2012-2014: Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Northern Rivers Institute, School of Geosciences, University of Aberdeen
  • 2008-2012: PhD Degree Civil Engineering and Geosciences, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom. Thesis title: 'Multiscale impacts of land use/management changes on flood response in the River Hodder catchment, north-west England' 
  • 2005-2007: MSc EcoHydrology, VU University Amsterdam, Netherlands. Thesis title: 'Changes in soil physical characteristics and hillslope hydrological response associated with forest conversion to pasture - Veracruz, Mexico'
  • 2002-2005: BSc Earth Sciences, VU University Amsterdam, Netherlands. 

Research Overview

My research is focussed primarily on understanding catchment processes at different scales and how these are affected by (environmental) change, with the ultimate aim to better inform sustainable management of catchments for the future. The main drivers of hydrological processes are sought through the integration of monitoring and modelling of systems. Key research interests include:

  • Multiscale catchment hydrology
  • Detection and prediction of water resources and land use/management practices impacts on the catchment hydrological behaviour and aquatic ecology of rivers
  • Vegetation- and soil–water linkages with respect to water storage, transmission and release
  • Flood and drought management

These are addressed using field based approaches in conjunction with hydrological modelling at multiple spatial scales, and also include the interpretation of environmental tracers (stable water isotopes), and statistical methods. 



  • Oludare Durodola (lead supervisor) 
  • Jessica Fennell (lead supervisor)
  • Tom Kind (lead supervisor)
  • Eva Loerke (lead supervisor)
  • Martyn Roberts (lead supervisor)
  • Utibe Utin (School of Biological Sciences, co-supervisor)
  • Liam Godwin (University of Highlands and Islands, SUPER DTP, co-supervisor)
  • Emma Hayes (Queens University Belfast, QUADRAT DTP, co-supervisor)

Recently completed:

  • Katya Dimitrova-Petrova (Postdoctoral Researcher, PhD student; lead supervisor)
  • Bas Buddendorf (PhD student; co-supervisor)
  • Lucile Verrot (Postdoctoral researcher; line manager)

Funding and Grants


  • 2021-2025: 'Optimising water use and soil carbon sequestration - can agricultural co-cropping systems provide multiple benefits to address climate change?', Scottish Funding Council via Hydronation programme (£170k), PI
  • 2021-2023: 'Complementary or competitive agroforestry water and nutrient use? – implications for shade tree management in tropical agroforestry' Royal Society International Exchange (£12k), PI
  • 2020-2024: 'The role of place and scale on effectiveness of temporary storage areas for surface runoff attenuation', Scottish Funding Council via Hydronation programme (£100k), PI
  • 2019-2022: 'MIDST-CZ: maximising impact by decision support tools for sustainable soil and water through UK-China critical zone science', NERC (£220k to Aberdeen), Co-I
  • 2019-2022: 'Exploring UAV thermal remote sensing for assesing management implications for stream temperatures', Macaulay Development Trust (£90k), PI
  • 2018-2021: 'Connect4 water resilience: connecting water resources, communities, drought and flood hazards, and governance across 4 countries in the Limpopo basin', NERC/DFIC (£250k), Co-I
  • 2017-2021: 'Evaluating nature based strategies in rural landscapes for managing low flows and stream temperatures', NERC and Chivas Brothers (£90k), PI


  • 2021: 'Establishing the potential influence of beaver activity on the natural functioning of rivers and streams and water resource management in Scotland', Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW), Research Project (£30k), PI 
  • 2019-2021: 'Plant water use in tea, coffee and cacao agroforestry - benchmarking research challenges and building connections', Pump Priming Research Grant, Scottish Research Council (£15k), PI
  • 2019-2021: 'Plant water availability and use in coffee agroforestry systems – exploring changes in water use strategies', The Carnegie Trust for Scottish Universities, Research Incentive Grant (£10k), PI
  • 2017-2020: 'Integrating novel water storage and flow sensing techniques to improve hydrological models/predictions', Macaulay Development Trust (£70k), PI
  • 2018: 'Water and the circular economy - where is the greatest sustainable economic benefit for resource recovery in the water cycle?' Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW), Research and Development Project (£37k). Co-I in collaboration with Davide Dionisi (Engineering)
  • 2017-2018: 'Extreme rainfall and floods in arid regions: replenishment or contamination of water resources?', NERC Urgency Grant (£70k), Co-I in collaboration with J-C Comte (PI), Botswana International University of Science and Technology (Palapye), the International Water Management Institute (Pretoria) and the Botswana Department of Water Affairs (Gaborone)
  • 2016-2018: 'Red Soil CZ: From natural to anthropogenic evolution of Red Soil and its impact on ecosystem function in the Critical Zone', NERC (£800k), Co-I in collaboration with P Hallett (PI, IBES Aberdeen), J. Smith (IBES Aberdeen), M. Hodson (York) and the Institute of Soil Science, Chinese Academy of Sciences
  • 2015-2016: ‘Can novel cosmic ray soil moisture probes be used to address the urgent need for upscaling water storage and flux dynamics in hydrological models?’, Royal Society Research Grant (£15k), PI
  • 2015-2016: ‘Suspended sediment transport dynamics in tropical volcanic landforms’, British Society for Geomorphology, Early Career Researcher Grant (£5k), PI
  • 2015-2016: ‘Integrated approaches to assess multiscale water sources, flow paths and residence times in changing landscapes’, The Carnegie Trust for Scottish Universities, Research Incentive Grant (£7.5k), PI

Teaching Responsibilities

Course Co-ordinator and Instructor

  • GG2013 Physical Environments (2nd year course)
  • GG4071 Environmental Hydrology (4th year course)

Additional Teaching

  • GG2510 Mapping & Monitoring the Environment
  • GG3069 Remote Sensing & Geographical Information Systems
  • GG4573 Montane Environments
  • GG5569 Fundamentals and Advanced Applications of Map Algebra
  • BSc and MSc thesis supervisor
  • Personal Tutor

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Books and Reports

Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings

Contributions to Journals