The central theme of my research focusses on quantifying and reducing the impact of volcanic activity on people and the assets upon which they depend, such as buildings, infrastructure, and agriculture. Volcanic hazard and risk is an emerging research field that relies upon sparse empirical, theoretical, and experimental data in order to provide advice to stakeholders before, during, and after a crisis. My research tackles the challenges inherent in forecasting hazard and risk in a data-poor environment through field studies, numerical modelling, and the statistical interrogation of large datasets.
Key research areas are:
- Reconstruction of past eruptions and impacts through numerical modelling, remote sensing, post-eruption field studies, and the scientific analysis of historical reports;
- Statistical analysis of eruption datasets to provide forecasts of future eruption style, frequency, and magnitude for volcanoes across different spatial and temporal scales;
- Probabilistic volcanic hazard and risk assessment through the development and application of numerical models coupled with statistical approaches to managing uncertainty, such as Bayes theorem;
- Quantification of the physical vulnerability and fragility of societal assets (e.g. humans, buildings, infrastructure, agriculture) to volcanic hazards through pre-, syn- and post-eruption impact studies (both field-based and remotely sensed);
- The development and analysis of global impact databases.