Catherine is a Postdoctoral Researcher on the Oxford Martin Programme on Dryland Bioenergy and is based in the School of Geography and the Environment, University of Oxford. She is interested in human-environment interactions in dryland environments and the application of machine learning to answer questions about system thresholds and dynamics.
Currently, Catherine is working on the geography-stream of the Dryland Bioenergy project, focusing on identifying and mapping the key criteria that will determine where CAM species can be cultivated for bioenergy in the African context. This research is part of a wider project looking at the potential for plant-based options to provide access to renewable energy sources in on- and off-grid locations across Africa as well as repurpose degraded lands and make use of existing plant residues.
After receiving a distinction in her MSc Quaternary Science degree from Royal Holloway, University of London, Catherine completed a DPhil at the School of Geography and the Environment at the University of Oxford. Her research focused on using new methods for identifying dune system reactivation drivers and responses in the Nebraska Sandhills. Using a combination of machine learning and high-resolution luminescence dating techniques, Catherine’s work explored the relationship between historical surface disturbance events (e.g. 1930s US Dust Bowl) and sand movement, and the potential for predicting future sediment activation events.
Outside of research commitments, Catherine gives tutorials on dryland environments and quaternary climates at the School of Geography and the Environment.