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Research in the Department of Geography

Listed below are some current projects within the Department.

This project examines interrelationships between terrestrial, fluvial and coastal systems which affect the beach habitat of the endangered leatherback turtle. The aim of this study is to assess and analyze changes in coastal dynamics linked to climate change, which influence the nesting habitat of the leatherback turtle, through an integration of the hydrologic, hydraulic, hydrographic and socio-economic components of the Grande Riviere watershed and bay area.

Key Researchers:
Dr Junior Darsan (Principal Investigator), Dr Matthew Wilson, Dr Kegan Farrick, Dr Priya Kissoon, Dr Keith Miller (Geomatics), Dr Vincent Cooper (Civil Engineering) and Dr Asha Singh.

In this project, flood risk in the lower Caroni River basin is being assessed within the contexts of climate change, community vulnerability and adaptive capacity. The project aims to quantitatively assess current and future flood risk using computational modelling and integrate the results from this into a spatial analysis of vulnerability to flood risk, based on key indicators in Trinidad census data and the outcomes of community surveys and structured interviews.

Key Researchers:
Dr. Matthew Wilson (Principal Investigator), Dr. Priya Kissoon, Dr. Vincent Cooper (Civil Engineering) and Prof. Michael Taylor (Climate Studies Group, Mona)

This research aims to investigate the life-course trajectories and complex decision making of school dropouts in Trinidad & Tobago in order to improve retention in formal education and the income-generating capabilities and prospects of dropouts. Only about 60% of the students in Trinidad & Tobago survive the formal national education system to complete high school.

Key Researchers:
Dr. Priya Kissoon (Principal Investigator), Dr. Jennifer Collymore, Dr. Matthew Wilson

Research is being carried out in the Department of Geography into the potential impacts of sea-level rise on coastal communities of the Caribbean. The initial focus of the research will be south-west Tobago, where GIS analysis and computer models of coastal hydrodynamics will be used to assess potential flood and erosion risk in low lying areas such as Crown Point.

Key Researchers:
Dr. Matthew Wilson

Flooding is dominant in shaping the biological, chemical and physical processes of the Amazon basin: an area of 350,000 km2 is flooded at high water (Junk et al. 1989), representing 20% of the Earth's fresh water (this is around 68 times the size of Trinidad & Tobago).

Key Researchers:
Dr. Matthew Wilson

The caves of Trinidad and Tobago are an important natural resource. They are valuable for recreation, for the conservation of rare species, and specialized biotic communities, as potential archives of past climatic change, and as sensitive indicators of the overall health of the environment, in particular of water quality. As such, they require active monitoring and conservation.

Key Researchers:
Prof. Paul Shaw

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