Postgraduate research

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Around 80 postgraduate students are gathering in Loughborough today to kick-off a two-day conference, in which they will test new ideas and strengthen their theories.

The Mid-Term Conference, organised each year by the Society’s Postgraduate Forum, gives budding researchers the opportunity to present papers in a supportive environment.

Our very own Dr Hilary Geoghegan opened the conference with some wise words to the students in attendance. “We are all part of the discipline of geography,” she said. “Find and hold on to your passion for geography, engage with others within and beyond academia, be enthusiastic about your research and think creatively about what it is to be an early-career geographer in the 21st century.”

Click here to read more details.

Follow the conference on Twitter using the hashtag #PGFmidterm.

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A four year award studentship is available at the Department of Geography and Environmental Science. The title of the project is “Representing Uncertainty in Land Surface Hydrology for Seasonal Forecasting“.This PhD is part of a wider research project led by the University of Reading and funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC):  IMPETUS: Improving Predictions of Drought for User Decision-Making. The application deadline is 15th May 2014. For more information about the studentship, please follow this link.

 

 

Do competitive plant x plant interactions impact rhizosphere microbial community structure and function?

For further details please go to:

PhD Studentship in Soil Science advert

Determination of radiance spectra (using a GER 3700 hyperspectral radiometer) on Yarnton Mead, an ancient floodplain meadow near Oxford.   PhD-student Suvarna Punalekar (Felix scholar, University of Reading). These data serve as calibration for the airborne remote sensing data.

Determination of radiance spectra (using a GER 3700 hyperspectral radiometer) on Yarnton Mead, an ancient floodplain meadow near Oxford. PhD-student Suvarna Punalekar (Felix scholar, University of Reading). These data serve as calibration for the airborne remote sensing data.

Anne Verhoef, Kevin White and Suvarna Punalekar a PhD student funded by the Felix Scholarship scheme, have been successful in an application to the NERC Airborne Research and Survey Facility (ARSF). The ARSF will fly the NERC -funded network of sensors project (FUSE) project site at least 3 times (weather permitting), possibly more often. Airborne remote sensing provides an efficient method for the rapid collection of data over a specified area.

The FUSE project is based at Yarnton mead an ancient hay meadow that is part of the Oxford Meadows Special Area of Conservation. The team are investigating the interactions between the hydrological, thermal and nutrient regime and the functioning of plant communities in this example of a floodplain meadow.
Some floodplain meadow ecosystems have evolved into highly bio-diverse plant communities due to the continuance of traditional management practices. These areas are important for flood storage and sediment retention. The UK now has less than 1500 ha of this unique habitat remaining and the habitat has been given protection under the European Habitats Directive. In order to conserve and better exploit the services provided by floodplain meadows, an improved understanding of its functioning is essential.

Anne Verhoef with the NERC Dornier 228 aircraft

Anne Verhoef with the NERC Dornier 228 aircraft

The NERC ARSF remote campaign with FUSE field observations gathered during 2013 will provide an important contribution to monitoring the biophysical properties as well as vegetation processes. The remote sensing and in-situ data will be used in conjunction with the SCOPE model, to ensure the derived information on the functioning of the floodplain ecosystem is mechanistically sound.

Read about the Fuse project

Hear the Naked Scientist’s interview with Anne Verhoef

See a video report on NERC’s scientific research plane, the Dornier 228 

Read about the SCOPE model

Read about ARSF

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