Marine Eco-engineering Research Unit publications

Our 2016 review in Oceanography and Marine Biology: an Annual Review was the 3rd most cited paper between 2011-2019

Louise B. Firth, Antony M. Knights, Danielle Bridger, Alison J. Evans, Nova Mieszkowska, Pippa Moore, Nessa E. O’Connor, Emma Sheehan, Richard C. Thompson & Stephen J. Hawkins.
Read the full paper
<p>Oceanography and Marine Biology: an Annual Review paper image<br></p>
Airoldi L, Abbiati M, Beck MW, Hawkins SJ, Jonsson PR, Martin D, Moschella PS, Sundelöf A, Thompson RC, & Åberg P. (2005). An ecological perspective on the deployment and design of low-crested and other hard coastal defence structures. Coastal Engineering, 52, 1073-1087.
Airoldi, L., Beck, M.W., Firth, L.B.,Bugnot, A.B., Steinberg, P.D. and Dafforn, K.A., (2021). Emerging solutions to return nature to the urban ocean. Annual Review of Marine Science, 13, 445-477.
Bishop MJ, Mayer-Pinto M, Airoldi L, Firth LB, Morris RL, Loke LHL, Hawkins SJ, Naylor LA, Coleman RA, Chee SY, Dafforn KA (2017) Effects of ocean sprawl on ecological connectivity: impacts and solutions. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, 492: 7–30.
Bouma TJ, Van Belzen J, Balke T, Zhu Z, Airoldi L, Blight AJ, Davies AJ, Galvan C, Hawkins SJ, Hoggart SP, Lara JL (2014). Identifying knowledge gaps hampering application of intertidal habitats in coastal protection: Opportunities & steps to take. Coastal Engineering, 87, pp.147-157.
Bracewell SA, Robinson LA, Firth LB, Knights AM. (2013) Predicting free-space occupancy on novel artificial structures by an invasive intertidal barnacle using a removal experiment. PLoS ONE 8(9): e74457.
Burcharth H, Vidal C, Moschella PS, Airoldi L, Bulleri F, Ceccherelli VU, Colangelo MA, Thompson RC, and Hawkins SJ (2007) Consideration of legal, physical environmental, socio-economic and aesthetic constraints, in: Environmental design guidelines for low crested coastal structures. Burcharth HF, Hawkins SJ, Zanuttigh B, and Lamberti A. (Eds.), pp. 17-24, Elsevier,Oxford UK.
Chee SY, Othman AG, Sim YK, Mat Adam AN, Firth LB(2017). Land reclamation and artificial islands: walking the tightrope between development and conservation. Global Ecology and Conservation, 12: 80-95.
Chee SY, Firth LB, Then AYH, Yee JC, Mujahid A, Affendi YA, Amir AA, Lau CM, Ooi JLS, Quek YA and Tan CE, 2021. Enhancing Uptake of Nature-Based Solutions for Informing Coastal Sustainable Development Policy and Planning: A Malaysia Case Study. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 625.
Chee SY, Yee JC, Cheah CB, Evans AJ, Firth LB, Hawkins SJ and Strain EMA 2021. Habitat complexity affects the structure but not the diversity of sessile communities on tropical coastal infrastructure. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 
Coombes MA, Naylor LA, Thompson RC, Roast SD, Gómez-Pujol L, Fairhurst RJ (2011). Colonization and weathering of engineering materials by marine microorganisms: an SEM study. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms. 36(5):582-93.
Coombes MA, Naylor LA, Viles HA, Thompson RC. Bioprotection and disturbance: seaweed, microclimatic stability and conditions for mechanical weathering in the intertidal zone. Geomorphology, 202:4-14.
Coombes MA, La Marca EC, Naylor LA, Thompson RC (2015). Getting into the groove: opportunities to enhance the ecological value of hard coastal infrastructure using fine-scale surface textures. Ecological Engineering. 77:314-23.
Dodds K.C., Schaefer N., Bishop M.J., Nakagawa S., Brooks P.R., Knights A.M. and E. Strain. Material type influences the abundance but not richness of colonising organisms on marine structures. Journal of Environmental Management 307
Evans AJ, Firth LB, Hawkins SJ, Morris ES, Goudge H, Moore PJ (2016). Drill-cored rock pools: an effective method of ecological enhancement on artificial structures. Marine and Freshwater Research, 6: 123-130.
Evans AJ, Garrod B, Firth LB, Hawkins SJ, Morris ES, Goudge H, Moore PJ. (2017) Multi-functional coastal developments: desirability of potential secondary benefits and steps to effective implementation. Marine Policy, 75: 143-155.
Evans AJ, Firth LB, Hawkins SJ, Ironside J, Thompson RC, Moore P. (2018). From ocean sprawl to blue-green infrastructure – a strategy for maximising natural capital in marine engineering. Environmental Science and Policy, 91:.60-69.
Evans AJ, Firth LB, Hawkins SJ, Hall AE, Ironside JE, Thompson RC, Moore PJ (2019) From ocean sprawl to blue-green infrastructure–A UK perspective on an issue of global significance. Environmental Science & Policy91: 60-69.
Firth LB, Mieszkowska N, Thompson, RC, Hawkins SJ. (2013) Climate change and adaptational impacts in coastal systems: the case of sea defences. Environmental Science: Processes & Impacts15: 1665-1670.!divAbstract
Firth LB, Thompson RC, White FJ, Schofield M, Skov MW, Hoggart SPG, Jackson J, Knights AM, Hawkins SJ (2013) The importance of water retaining features for biodiversity on artificial intertidal coastal defence structures. Diversity and Distributions19: 1275–1283.
Firth LB, Schofield M, White FJ, Skov MW, Hawkins SJ (2014) Biodiversity in intertidal rock pools: informing engineering criteria for artificial habitat enhancement in the built environment. Marine Environmental Research. 102, 122–130.
Firth LB, Thompson RC, Bohn K, Abiatti M, Airoldi L, Bouma TJ, Bozzeda F, Ceccherelli VU, Colangelo MA, Evans E, Ferrario F, Hanley M, Hinz H, Hoggart SPG, Jackson J, Moore P, Morgan EH, Perkol-Finkel S, Strain EM, van Belzen J, Hawkins SJ (2014) Between a rock and a hard place: environmental and engineering considerations when designing flood defence structures. Coastal Engineering87: 122–135.
Firth LB, Mieszkowska N, Grant LM, Bush LE, Davies AJ, Frost MT, Moschella PS, Burrows MT, Cunningham PN, Dye SR, Hawkins SJ. (2015) Historical comparisons reveal multiple drivers of decadal change of an ecosystem engineer at the range edge. Ecology and Evolution. 5: 3210–3222.
Firth LB, Knights AM, Thompson RC, Mieszkowska N, Bridger D, Evans A, Moore PJ, O’Connor NE, Sheehan EV, Hawkins SJ (2016) Ocean sprawl: challenges and opportunities for biodiversity management in a changing world. Invited contribution to Oceanography and Marine Biology: an Annual Review. 54: 193-269.
Firth LB, Browne K, Knights AM, Hawkins SJ, Nash R. (2016) Eco-engineered rock pools: a concrete solution to biodiversity loss and urban sprawl in the marine environment. Environmental Research Letters, 11: 094015.
Firth LB, White FJ, Schofield M, Hanley ME, Burrows MT, Thompson RC, Skov MW, Evans AJ, Moore PJ, Hawkins SJ (2016) Facing the future: the importance of substratum features for ecological engineering of artificial habitats in the rocky intertidal. Marine and Freshwater Research. 67: 131-143.
Firth, L.B.,Airoldi, L., Bulleri, F., Challinor, S., Chee, S.Y., Evans, A.J., Hanley, M.E., Knights, A.M., O'Shaughnessy, K., Thompson, R.C. and Hawkins, S.J.,(2020). Greening of grey infrastructure should not be used as a Trojan horse to facilitate coastal development. Journal of Applied Ecology, 57(9), 1762-1768.
Firth, L.B.,Duff, L., Gribben, P.E. and Knights, A.M.,(2020). Do positive interactions between marine invaders increase likelihood of invasion into natural and artificial habitats?. Oikos.
Firth LB, Duff L, Gribben PE, and Knights AM. 2021. Do positive interactions between marine invaders increase likelihood of invasion into natural and artificial habitats?. Oikos, 130(3), pp.453-463. 
Hanley ME, Hoggart SPG, Simmonds DJ, Bichot A, Colangelo MA, Bozzeda F, Heurtefeux H, Ondiviela B, Ostrowski R, Recio M, Trude R. (2014). Shifting sands? Coastal protection by sand banks, beaches and dunes. Coastal Engineering, 87, 136-146.
Hanlon N, Firth LB, Knights AM. (2018). Time-dependent effects of orientation, heterogeneity and composition determines benthic biological community recruitment patterns on subtidal artificial structures. Ecological Engineering, 122: 219-228.
Hawkins, S.J., O'Shaughnessy, K.A., Adams, L.A., Langston, W.J., Bray, S., Allen, J.R., Wilkinson, S., Bohn, K., Mieszkowska, N. and Firth, L.B.,(2020). Recovery of an urbanised estuary: Clean-up, de-industrialisation and restoration of redundant dock-basins in the Mersey. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 156, 111150.
Hawkins, S.J., Firth, L.B.and Evans, A.J., (2021). Structures spread across our seas. Nature Sustainability, 4(1), 7-8.
Hoggart SPG, Hanley ME, Parker DJ, Simmonds DJ, Franklin EL, White AC, Bilton DT, Rundle SD, Penning-Rowsell EC, Trifonova E, Vergiev S, Filipova-Marinova M, Kotsev I, Thompson RC(2014). The consequences of doing nothing: The effects of seawater flooding on coastal zones. Coastal Engineering, 87: 169-182.
Hsiung, A.R., Tan, W.T., Loke, L.H., Firth, L.B., Heery, E.C., Ducker, J., Clark, V., Pek, Y.S., Birch, W.R., Ang, A.C. and Hartanto, R.S., (2020). Little evidence that lowering the pH of concrete supports greater biodiversity on tropical and temperate seawalls. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 656, 193-205.
Knights AM, Firth LB, Thompson RC, Yunnie AL, Hiscock K, Hawkins SJ (2016) Plymouth - a world harbour through the ages. Regional Studies in Marine Science, 8: 297-307.
Lemasson A.J., Knights A.M., Thompson M., Lessin G., Beaumont N., Pascoe C., Queirós A.M., McNeill L., Schratzberger M., and P.J. Somerfield (2021) Evidence for the effects of decommissioning man-made structures on marine ecosystems: A global systematic map protocol. Environmental Evidence.
Martin D, Bertasi F, Colangelo MA, de Vries M, Frost M, Hawkins SJ, Macpherson E, Moschella PS, Satta MP, Thompson RC, Ceccherelli VU (2005). Ecological impact of coastal defence structures on sediment and mobile fauna: Evaluating and forecasting consequences of unavoidable modifications of native habitats. Coastal Engineering, 52, 1027 –1051.
Martins GM, Thompson RC, Neto AI, Hawkins SJ, Jenkins SR (2010). Enhancing stocks of the exploited limpet Patella candeid’Orbigny via modifications in coastal engineering. Biological Conservation, 143: 203-211.
Martins GM, Jenkins SR, Neto AI, Hawkins SJ, Thompson RC(2016) Long-term modifications of coastal defences enhance marine biodiversity. Environmental Conservation43: 109-16.
Masselink G, Hanley ME, Halwyn AC, Blake W, Kingston K, Newton T, Williams M (2017) Evaluation of salt marsh restoration by means of self-regulating tidal gate–Avon estuary, South Devon, UK. Ecological Engineering106: 174-190.
McManus RS, Archibald N, Comber S, Knights AM, Thompson RC, Firth LB(2017). Partial replacement of cement for waste aggregates in concrete coastal and marine infrastructure: A foundation for ecological enhancement? Ecological Engineering, 120: 655-667.
Morris RL, Heery EC, Loke LHL, Lau E, Strain EMA, Airoldi L, Alexander KA, Bishop MJ, Coleman RA, Cordell JR, Dong Y-W, Firth LB, Hawkins SJ, Heath T, Kokora M, Lee SY, Miller JK, Perkol-Finkel S, Rella A, Steinberg PD, Takeuchi I, Thompson RC, Todd, PA, Toft JD, Leung KMY (2019) Design Options, Implementation Issues and Evaluating Success of Ecologically Engineered Shorelines. Oceanography and Marine Biology: an Annual Review57,
Morris RL, Martinez AS, Firth LB, Coleman RA (2018). Can ‘seeding’ enhance mobile marine invertebrates in ecologically engineered rock pools? Marine Environmental Research, In press.
Morris RL, Chapman MG, Firth LB, Coleman RA (2017). Increasing habitat complexity on seawalls: Investigating large-and small-scale effects on fish assemblages. Ecology and Evolution, 7(22):9567-9579
Moschella PS, Abbiati M, Åberg P, Airoldi L, Anderson JM, Bacchiocchi F, Bulleri F, Dinesen GE, Frost M, Gacia E, Granhag L (2005). Low-crested coastal defence structures as artificial habitats for marine life: using ecological criteria in design. Coastal Engineering, 52(10-11):1053-71.
Moschella PS, Paphitis D, Plomartis T, Collins M, Aberg P, Garhang L, Jonsson P, Frost M, Thompson RC, and Hawkins SJ (2007). Case studies in: Environmental design guidelines for low crested coastal structures. Burcharth HF, Hawkins SJ, Zanuttigh B, and Lamberti A. (Eds.), pp.73-136, Elsevier, Oxford UK.
Moschella PS, Thompson RCand Hawkins SJ (2007). Environmental considerations in: Environmental design guidelines for low crested coastal structures. Burcharth HF, Hawkins SJ, Zanuttigh B, and Lamberti A. (Eds.), p. 65, Elsevier, Oxford UK.
Moschella PS, Thompson RC and Hawkins SJ (2007) Environmental impacts during construction operations in: Environmental design guidelines for low crested coastal structures. Burcharth HF, Hawkins SJ, Zanuttigh B and Lamberti A. (Eds.), p.70, Elsevier, Oxford UK.
Naylor LA, Coombes MA, Venn O, Roast SD, Thompson RC (2012) Facilitating ecological enhancement of coastal infrastructure: the role of policy, people and planning. Environmental science & policy. 222:36-46.
Naylor LA, Venn O, Coombes MA, Jackson J, Thompson RC (2011) Including ecological enhancements in the planning, design and construction of hard coastal structures: A process guide. Report to the Environment Agency (PID 110461). University of Exeter.
O’Shaughnessy, K.A., Hawkins, S.J.,Evans, A.J., Hanley, M.E., Lunt, P., Thompson, R.C.,Francis, R.A., Hoggart, S.P., Moore, P.J., Iglesias, G. and Simmonds, D.,Ducker, J., Firth, L.B.(2020). Design catalogue for eco-engineering of coastal artificial structures: a multifunctional approach for stakeholders and end-users. Urban Ecosystems, 23(2), 431-443.
O'Shaughnessy, K.A., Hawkins, S.J.,Yunnie, A.L., Hanley, M.E., Lunt, P., Thompson, R.C. and Firth, L.B., (2020). Occurrence and assemblage composition of intertidal non-native species may be influenced by shipping patterns and artificial structures. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 154, 111082.
Pearson S, Windupranata W, Pranowo SW, Putri A, Ma Y, Vila-Concejo A, Fernández E, Méndez G, Banks J, Knights AM, Firth LB, Bollard Breen B, Jarvis R, Aguirre D, Chen S, Howard Smith AN, Steinberg P, Chatzinikolaou E, Arvanitidis C. (2016) Conflicts in some of the World harbours: What needs to happen next? Maritime Studies, 15:10.
O'Shaughnessy KA, Perkol-Finkel S, Strain EM, Bishop MJ, Hawkins SJ, Hanley ME, Lunt P, Thompson RC, Hadary T, Shirazi R, Yunnie AL, Firth LB. 2021. Spatially variable effects of artificially created physical complexity on subtidal benthos. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 9, 1-14.
Strain EMA, Alexander KA, Kienker S, Morris R, Jarvis R, Coleman R, Bollard B, Firth LB, Knights AM, Grabowski JH, Airoldi L (2019) Urban blue: A global analysis of the factors shaping people's perceptions of the marine environment and ecological engineering in harbours. Science of the Total Environment658: 1293-1305.
Strain EMA, Olabarria C, Mayer-Pinto M, Cumbo V, Morris R, Bugnot A, Dafforn K, Heery E, Firth LB, Brooks P, Bishop MJ (2018) Eco-engineering urban infrastructure for marine and coastal biodiversity: which interventions have the greatest ecological benefit?. Journal of Applied Ecology, 1-16.
Strain, E.M., Steinberg, P.D., Vozzo, M., Johnston, E.L., Abbiati, M., Aguilera, M.A., Airoldi, L., Aguirre, J.D., Ashton, G., Bernardi, M. and Brooks, P., Chan, B., Chee, S.-Y., Coutinhosa, R., Crowe, T., Davey, A., Firth, L.B.,Fraser, C., Hanley, M., Hawkins. S.J.,Knick, K., Lau, E., Leung, K., McKenzie, C., MacLeod, C., Mafanya, S., Mancuso, F., Messano, L., Ng, T., O'Shaughnessy, K.,Pattrick, P., Perkins, M., Perkol-Finkel, S.; Porri, F., Ross, D., Ruiz, G., Sella, I., Seitz, R., Shirazi, R., Thiel, M., Thompson, R.C.,Yee, J., Zabin, C., Bishop, M. (2021). A global analysis of complexity–biodiversity relationships on marine artificial structures. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 30(1), 140-153.
Valdor, P.F., Gómez, A.G., Juanes, J.A., Kerléguer, C., Steinberg, P., Tanner, E., MacLeod, C., Knights, A.M., Seitz, R.D., Airoldi, L. and Firth, L.B., (2019). A global atlas of the environmental risk of marinas on water quality. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 149, 110661.
Valdor, P.F., Gómez, A.G., Steinberg, P., Tanner, E., Knights, A.M.,Seitz, R.D., Airoldi, L., Firth, L.B., Arvanitidis, C., Ponti, M. and Chatzinikolaou, E., (2020). A global approach to mapping the environmental risk of harbours on aquatic systems. Marine Policy, 119, 104051.
Walls AM, Edwards MD, Firth LB, Johnson MP (2018). Ecological priming of artificial aquaculture structures: Kelp farms as an example. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the UK, 1-12
Wilhelmsson D, Malm T, Thompson R, Tchou J, Sarantakos G, McCormick N, Luitjens S, Gullström M, Patterson Edwards JK, Amir O and Dubi A (eds.) (2010). Greening Blue Energy: Identifying and managing the biodiversity risks and opportunities of off shore renewable energy. Gland, Switzerland:IUCN. 90pp.
Witt MJ, Sheehan EV, Bearhop S, Broderick AC, Conley DC, Cotterell SP, Crow E, Grecian WJ, Halsband C, Hodgson DJ, Hosegood P, Inger R, Miller PI, Sims DW, Thompson RC, Vanstaen K, Votier SC, Attrill MJ & Godley BJ. (2012) Assessing wave energy effects on biodiversity: the Wave Hub experience. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society a-Mathematical Physical and Engineering Sciences370,502-529.
Zanuttigh B, Nicholls RJ, Vanderlinden JP, Thompson RC, Burcharth HF (2014). Coastal Risk Management in a Changing Climate. Butterworth-Heinemann.
Zanuttigh B, Simcic D, Bagli S, Bozzeda F, Pietrantoni L, Zagonari F, Hoggart S, Nicholls RJ (2014). THESEUS decision support system for coastal risk management. Coastal Engineering, 87: 218-239.