Dr Josie Geris

Dr Josie Geris
Dr Josie Geris
Dr Josie Geris





  • 2022-: 0.8 FTE Reader in Hydrology, School of Geosciences, University of Aberdeen 
  • 2019-2022: Senior Lecturer in Hydrology, School of Geosciences, University of Aberdeen (leave: August 2019 - May 2020)
  • 2014-2019: Lecturer in Hydrology, 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 on: 'Multiscale impacts of land use/management changes on flood response' 
  • 2005-2007: MSc EcoHydrology, VU University Amsterdam, Netherlands. Thesis on: 'Changes in soil physical characteristics and hillslope hydrological response associated with forest conversion to pasture'
  • 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. 


Current postdoctoral research fellows:

Current PhD students:

Recently completed:

  • Emma Hayes (PhD student at Queens University Belfast; co-supervisor)
  • Eva Loerke (Postdoctoral Researcher, PhD student; lead supervisor)
  • Jessica Fennell (PhD student; lead supervisor)
  • Katya Dimitrova-Petrova (Postdoctoral Researcher, PhD student; lead supervisor)
  • Bas Buddendorf (PhD student; co-supervisor)
  • Lucile Verrot (Postdoctoral researcher; line manager)

Funding and Grants


  • 2024-2028: The role of surface water - groundwater connections on the potential for managing water supply with nature-based solutions, £100K, PI 
  • 2024-2025: 'Creating healthy and resilient river systems across Scotland: prioritising research and development gap opportunities for river woodlands', £200K, Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW), Co-PI
  • 2023-2025: 'Resilience and vulnerability of water resources under drought conditions - new insights from integrated in-situ and remote sensing approaches', £18K, Royal Society, PI 
  • 2023-2024: 'Understanding the relationship between water scarcity and land use in private water supply catchments', £95K, Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW), PI
  • 2022-2025: 'FARM TREE: Balancing farm and landscape-scale demands for integrating trees on agricultural land', £505K to Aberdeen, NERC, PI
  • 2021-2025: 'Optimising water use and soil carbon sequestration - can agricultural co-cropping systems provide multiple benefits to address climate change?', £173K, Scottish Funding Council via Hydronation programme, PI
  • 2020-2024: 'The role of place and scale on effectiveness of temporary storage areas for surface runoff attenuation', £100K, Scottish Funding Council via Hydronation programme, PI


  • 2023-2024: 'Future predictions of water scarcity in Scotland: impacts to distilleries and agricultural abstractors', £100K, Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW), Co-I
  • 2021-2024: 'Complementary or competitive agroforestry water and nutrient use? – Implications for shade tree management in tropical agroforestry', £12K, Royal Society, PI
  • 2021: 'Establishing the potential influence of beaver activity on the natural functioning of rivers and streams and water resource management in Scotland', £35K, Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW), PI 
  • 2019-2023: 'Exploring UAV thermal remote sensing for assessing management implications for stream temperatures', £90K, Macaulay Development Trust, PI
  • 2019-2022: 'MIDST-CZ: maximising impact by decision support tools for sustainable soil and water through UK-China critical zone science', £220K to Aberdeen, NERC, Co-I
  • 2019-2021: 'Plant water use in tea, coffee and cacao agroforestry - benchmarking research challenges and building connections', £15K, Scottish Research Council, PI
  • 2019-2021: 'Plant water availability and use in coffee agroforestry systems – exploring changes in water use strategies', £10K, The Carnegie Trust for Scottish Universities, PI
  • 2018-2022: 'Connect4 water resilience: connecting water resources, communities, drought and flood hazards, and governance across 4 countries in the Limpopo basin', £250K, NERC/DFIC, Co-I
  • 2018: 'Water and the circular economy - where is the greatest sustainable economic benefit for resource recovery in the water cycle?', £37K, Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW), Co-I
  • 2017-2022: 'Evaluating nature based strategies in rural landscapes for managing low flows and stream temperatures', £90K, NERC and Chivas Brothers, PI
  • 2017-2020: 'Integrating novel water storage and flow sensing techniques to improve hydrological models/predictions', £70K, Macaulay Development Trust, PI
  • 2017-2018: 'Extreme rainfall and floods in arid regions: replenishment or contamination of water resources?', £56K, NERC Urgency Grant, Co-I 
  • 2016-2018: 'Red Soil CZ: From natural to anthropogenic evolution of Red Soil and its impact on ecosystem function in the Critical Zone', £800K to Aberdeen, NERC, Co-I 
  • 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?’, £15K, Royal Society, PI
  • 2015-2016: ‘Suspended sediment transport dynamics in tropical volcanic landforms’, £5K, British Society for Geomorphology, PI
  • 2015-2016: ‘Integrated approaches to assess multiscale water sources, flow paths and residence times in changing landscapes’, £7.5K, The Carnegie Trust for Scottish Universities, PI

Teaching Responsibilities

Course Co-ordinator and Instructor

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

Additional Teaching

  • GG2508 Skills and Techniques in Geosciences
  • GG2510 Mapping & Monitoring the Environment
  • BSc and MSc thesis supervisor
  • Personal Tutor

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Books and Reports

Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings

Contributions to Journals