Dr Larissa Naylor
- Reader (School of Geographical & Earth Sciences)
Larissa is a Reader and NERC knowledge exchange fellow at the University of Glasgow. She is an international expert in biogeomorphology, rock coast morphodynamics, coastal erosion risk and coastal climate change adaptation and use of nature-based approaches including ecological enhancement. She is increasingly applying her science to urban environmental issues including applying her blue skies science of biotic-rock interactions to help green hard infrastructure assets in urban, historic and coastal settings. Larissa has led international working groups and initiatives on Stormy Geomorphology and Rock Coast Geomorphology. Her research has been cited in the 4th IPPC report and has shaped Marine and Flood Risk policies in Scotland and Wales.
She was recently an Associate Editor of Earth Surface Processes and Landforms (2014-2018) and is currently on the Editorial Board of Annals of the American Association of Geographers (until 2020). She currently sits on Adaptation Scotland’s Advisory Network and in 2018 won the Halcrow Prize for best paper in the Institution of Civil Engineer’s Journal: Proceedings in Maritime Engineering and the British Society for Geomorphology’s Mid-Career (Gordon Warwick) Award. The Warwick Award nomination said: "Dr Naylor is an impressive example of the new generation of geomorphologists. She is highly intelligent, energized, and passionate, deeply rooted in conceptual understanding, with extensive field experience and early adopter and innovator in advancing technologies. She is active in applying geomorphology to the significant societal issues we face in the Anthropocene."
Larissa’s knowledge exchange expertise was developed through 6 years of work in industry and government in the UK and Canada. She uses these skills to navigate the science-policy-practice interface to help shape policy and practice Earlier in her career she helped establish the UK’s Marine Climate Change Impacts Partnership, has reviewed the coastal chapter for the IPPC and has sat on the IUCN’s peer review college. Larissa is currently co-writing international guidelines on ‘Natural and Nature-based Features’ for improving the multifunctionality of coastal and riverine flood and erosion infrastructure. She is also leading the policy briefing and adaptation components of Scotland’s Dynamic Coast Phase 2, which examines coastal erosion and erosion-induced flood risks across Scotland (www.dynamiccoast.com) and is exploring adaptation options to live with these risks. Larissa is also a co-investigator on two UK-China research projects looking at improving our understanding of how human activities affect fragile karst ecosystems and creating a decision-support tool to support Chinese government officials, farm cooperatives and farmers in developing more sustainable land-management practices. Larissa has overseen the knowledge exchange aspects of these projects.
She currently leads two NERC projects, looking at ecosystem-based urban coastal adaptation to climate change with partners in England and Scotland and a NERC Green Infrastructure Innovation project focused on improving multi functionality of hard infrastructure that must remain primarily grey via greening: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nJQdURjiztc For these projects, she works closely with over 20 government, industry and non-profit organisations across the UK. The design of key project outputs has been co-developed with project partners, to improve the ease with which academic and government science can be used by practitioners and policymakers. This work is being used to shape statutory policies and improve practice to deliver ecological and climate change adaptation improvements within urbanized coasts, estuaries and catchments.
Larissa also works with artists, designers and makers to help captivate audiences around pressing environmental challenges such as climate change and rapid urbanisation of our natural and semi-natural landscapes. Her work has featured in recent public exhibitions (attended by >43,000 people in 2018), documentary films (http://edinburghshoreline.org.uk/the-edinburgh-shoreline-project-is-1/) and magazines (e.g National Geographic Kids).
Prior to her return to academia on a part-time basis in 2007, Larissa worked for the Environment Agency (2004-2006) and an Environmental Consultancy (Wollsey Parsons Komex). Here she worked on catchment-scale science questions, helping to implement the hydromorphology elements of the European Water Framework Directive and aid implementation/compliance with water quality related matters related to the Habitats Directive. She worked closely with the marine, climate change and social science teams, helping develop and deliver coastal and marine related initiatives. During this period, she won a Royal Society outgoing fellowship to work with CSIRO in Australia to identify best practice in catchment scale water management science that could inform emerging UK practice.
UKRI Grants (2013 - Present)
- NERC Knowledge Exchange Fellowship: Developing a sustainable, ecosystem-based coastal climate change adaptation routemap for policy makers and practitioners, NE/M010546/1, 2015-2019, £121,997
- EPSRC Impact Accelerator Account Award: City of Edinburgh Dynamic Coast Downscaling, 2019, £8000
- NERC Innovation Follow-on: Integrated Green Grey Infrastructure Framework Accelerator, NE/R009236/1, 2018-2020, £100,791
- Portsmouth City Council: lead partner on eco-formliner design for operational flood risk scheme, 2018, £17,500
- EPSRC iCASE PhD Studentship with Arup: Green biofilters, EP/R511936/1, 2017-2021, £83,000
- NERC Green Infrastructure Innovation: A Decision Framework for Integrated Green Grey Infrastructure (IGGIframe), NE/N017404/1, 2016-2017, £98, 747
- University of Glasgow Academic Returner's Funding, 2015, £10,000
- SAGES+ Industrial Exchange Fellowship with Arup, 2014, £15,000
- NERC MIDST-CZ: Maximising Impact by Decision Support Tools for sustainable soil and water through UK-China Critical Zone science, NE/S009140/1, 2019-2021, £240,505
- Scottish Government: co-investigator on the Dynamic Coast 2 project (www.dynamiccoast.com), 2018-2020, £240,000
- NERC Urgency: Dating coseismic marine terrace formation during the Kaikoura 2016 earthquake, NE/P021433/1, 2017-2019, £52,401
- NERC Newton: The transmissive critical zone: understanding the karst hydrology-biogeochemical interface for sustainable management, NE/N007425/1, 2016 – 2019, £518,356
- NERC Belmont Forum: Multi-scale adaptations to climate change and social-ecological sustainability in coastal areas (MAGIC), NE/L008807/1, 2013-2017, £224,416 (£5K to Glasgow)
Geography Summer School (widening participation)
- Contribute to the annual programme
- Co-design and co-leader (2013-2015)
Level 1 Geography
- A world of changing environments
- An interacting world
Level 2 Geography
- Environmental Geography block (co-conveynor)
Level 3/4 Geography
- Dissertation supervisor
- Level 4 core course contributor
- From 2019/2020: Conveynor of Coasts and Climate Change A: Science and Risk and Coasts and Climate Change B: Vulnerability and Adaptation
Level 4 Earth Science
- Supervison of Level 4 projects on cultural heritage science, environmental and geological engineering related topics.
MSc Sustainable Water and Geomatics
- Managing Water Environments (co-conveynor)
- Supervision of MSc research projects (2014 to present)
Prior to the University of Glasgow, I designed and delivered (both individual and team-taught) courses in interdisciplinary science, coastal geomorphology and biogeomorphology, geomorphology, first year physical geography and learning by experience. I also co-designed and delivered undergraduate fieldtrips and was undergraduate programme director.
Professional activities & recognition
Prizes, awards & distinctions
- 2018: Halcrow Prize, best paper in Proceedings of the ICE - Maritime Engineering Journal (Institute of Civil Engineers)
- 2018: Gordon Warwick Award, for excellence in Geomorphology research within 15 years of completing your PhD (British Society for Geomorphology)
- 2015 - 2019: NERC Knowledge Exchange Fellowship
- 2016: MASTS PECRE Award
- 2014: SAGES Industrial Exchange Fellowship with Arup
- 2005: Royal Society Outgoing Fellowship to the University of Melbourne
Grant committees & research advisory boards
- 2018: NERC, Knowledge Exchange Fellowships Interview Panel
- 2006 - 2009: NERC, Peer Review College (Affiliate)
- 2010 - 2014: IUCN, Invited Peer Reviewer
- 2003 - 2006: IPCC, Invited Chapter Reviewer
- 2016 - 2020: Annuals of the American Association of Geographers
- 2014 - 2018: Earth Surface Processes and Landforms (Associate Editor)
Professional & learned societies
- 2002 - 2019: Ordinary Member, British Society for Geomorphology
Selected international presentations
- 2019: Keynote at European Geography Congress (Galway, Ireland)
- 2019: Keynote at Young Coastal Scientists Conference (Glasgow, Scotland)
- 2018: Keynote at the Spanish Geomorphology Society's Bi-Annual Conference (Palma, Majorca)
- 2018: Gordon Warwick Award Lecture, British Society for Geomorphology's Annual Conference (Aberystwyth, Wales)
- 2017: Keynote at the Scottish Wildlife Trust's Annual General Meeting (Glasgow, Scotland)