Staff profile

Dr Richard Pope

Lecturer in Geography




College of Science and Engineering


School of Built and Natural Environment

Research centre

Environmental Sustainability Research Centre, University Professorial Council





Lecturer in Geography.

Professional interests

Specialisms in Soil and Mediterranean Geomorphology.

Research interests

Late Quaternary and Holocene Landscape development in Mediterranean dry lands. Of particular interest is the role of humankind in the landscape, and the application of geoarchaeology, geomorphology and soils for unravelling evidence of human activity.

Additional interests and activities

1. Unravelling the impact of Meso- and Neolithic communities on the Moncayon landscape, Aragon
This collaborative project involving colleagues from Durham, Newcastle and King Alfred's College, aims to establish how prehistoric communities modified the landscape. Research has been conducted at a number of key sites since 2002, involving analysis of archaeological evidence, palaeosols, river deposits and gully systems. A high-resolution chronological framework is currently being established using OSL and AMS 14C dating using funding from the AHRB. 

2. Human impacts upon axial drainage systems in the Sparta Basin, southern Greece
This project involving King Alfred's College and the Yperesia Eggeion Beltioseon (land reclamation Service of Greece) has been looking at human-induced changes in the Evrotas River. Detailed mapping, analysis of fluvial sediments and dating suggests that human activity has resulted in a significant change in the river system, characterised by a switch from a fine-grained to increasingly avulsing, coarse-grained system. The British School at Athens, and Research and Development Funds from the University of Sunderland and King Alfred's College, Winchester, has provided funding.

3. Mega fan systems as sensitive recorders of long-term deposition: evidence from the Sfakian piedmont, southern Crete
An application has been submitted to the NERC to fund a collaborative project involving Derby, Sheffield, Hull, St. Andrews and University of Heraklion (Crete), which aims to establish whether mega fan systems record major (environmental) changes in climatically sensitive drainage basins of Crete. This project aims to combine remotely sensed data with detailed field mapping, analysis of fan sediments and palaeosols, archaeological data and OSL dating. The first season commences in August 2004.

Recent publications

Truck ploughing snow

What is the science behind a white Christmas? Dr Richard Pope, Reader in Climate Change at the University of Derby explains all.