School of Geography

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Giuditta Trinci


Lecturer in Physical Geography

Telephone: +44 (0)20 7882 2753
Room Number: Bancroft Building, Room 2.01


My research focuses on fluvial processes (the flux of water and sediment) and their dynamic interaction with morphology and ecology; in particular, I am interested in how turbulence might shapes biological riverine features and processes to find a way to assess and actively improve the ecological/hydrological status of a river. I want to understand how flow dynamics influences the behaviour of fish in a riverine environment, looking in particular at how the hydraulic characteristics of their physical habitat affect their ability to find both adequate shelter from floods and sufficient food supplies.


Research Interests:

Hydromorphology of river ecosystems and their influence on aquatic biota
Hydromorphology is an important component of the assessment of streams and rivers. The Water Framework Directive requires the hydromorphological assessment, which should include an evaluation of modifications in flow regime, sediment transport, river morphology, and lateral channel continuity. In addition, river assessment need to capture the ecological values of rivers by evaluate the impact of hydromorphological factors on aquatic biota (vegetation, macroinvertebrates and fish). Despite this, the effective understanding on the response of organisms to hydraulic and geomorphology changes over time and space is weak and need to more focus.

Implementation of river assessment to restoration design and river management
The general aim of this research is the development and testing of an overall hydromorphological assessment framework, which should be a widely applicable system for channel - floodplain hydromorphological survey,  assessment and classification, with specific consideration to channel dynamics  and floodplains, and suitable for the WFD. The evaluation of the morphological conditions is enhanced by other assessments i.e. the assessment of the hydrological regime alteration, longitudinal fish fauna continuity, and the characterization of physical in-stream and riparian habitats. Because of the range of existing methods, the development of a completely new methodology is probably unnecessary. Rather, the effort should be in combining, selecting, improving and testing existing approaches to achieve an integrated framework. Further than the need for a more comprehensive hydromorphological assessment, there is also the necessity for developing a simpler tool which can be used for an initial screening and identification of critical hydromorphological conditions at microscale and catchment scale. In fact, most of the hydromorphological assessment methods require time demanding data collection and analysis, and their application to a wide number of reaches by agencies in charge of the WFD monitoring is unfeasible.

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