Staff profile

Oliver Tomlinson

Senior Lecturer in Geography

Oliver Tomlinson in front of some vegetation




College of Science and Engineering


School of Built and Natural Environment


Kedleston Road, Derby Campus



I am a senior lecturer in Geography at the University of Derby, where I have worked since 1989. I am also the Programme Leader for BSc (Hons) Geography, BSc (Hons) Geography and Environmental Hazards and I am the Subject Leader for Geography in our UG Joint Honours scheme.

Teaching responsibilities

I teach at levels from Foundation (level 3) to Masters (level 7). My subject specialisms are cartography, photogrammetry, surveying, GNSS, remote sensing & GIS which are delivered through a range of specialist modules offered to students studying geography, environmental hazards, geology, ecology and environmental assessment / management. I also provide workshops and seminars on GIS for students on other programmes (e.g. Environmental Health) and at other colleges and HEIs.

Professional interests

I act in an advisory, training and/or consultancy capacity for SMEs and charitable organisations etc. in the use / adoption of GIS and related technologies (such as GNSS) and/or aid them in getting the most out of their existing geospatial data or how to collect and use such data.

Through professional organisations such as the RGS and the GA I provide training in GIS, field data collection technologies and satellite image processing for teachers. This is generally done via workshops advertised on the GA or RGS websites. I am also an ESRI 'Geomentor' and provide support to local teachers in the use of ArcGIS online via the ESRI geomentor scheme.

I have previously worked in a consultancy capacity as part of a team that undertook client based flood risk assessments in relation to site planning applications. My responsibilities here were in detailed surveying of site elevations and generation of detailed DEMs of sites such that flood risk assessments could be modelled in each case.

Research interests

Past and current research interested have largely been around the use / application of GIS. I have participated in wide ranging studies, from working for the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM) in terms of mapping allotments and their attributes across Britain, to looking at the relationships between aspects of health, census and deprivation data to better help inform local health care practitioners.

My current research interests include

The Argan tree (argana spinosa) of Southern Morocco with colleagues from Derby and L'Institut agronomique et vétérinaire (IAV) Hassan II, Agadir, Morocco. I am currently involved in mapping argan distribution and density in the Souss-Massa plain / argan biosphere reserve, looking at the pressures it faces, how its distribution has changed over time and how it can be better protected (along with its natural assemblage of other associated vegetation species) for the benefit of all.

The adaptation and resilience to climate and environmental change of a coastal lagoonal community in a tropical LEDC: The Muni-Pomadze lagoon in Winneba, Ghana. As well as my own involvement in research on the Muni-Pomadze lagoon, I am also one of the supervisors for this UoD funded PhD project. I have also supervised a URSS UG project looking a the number, distribution and characteristics of coastal lagoons along the W. Afican Coast.

Providing support for a post doctoral research fellowship at Derby on nature connectedness that is aiming to GIS model functional habitat connectivity for a series of key indicator species.

Membership of professional bodies


Undergraduate Qualifications

Postgraduate Qualifications 

International experience

Additional interests and activities