Neil Roberts
Profiles

Neil Roberts

Professor of Physical Geography

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences - Faculty of Science & Engineering (Faculties)

Role

Geography Research Coordinator

Qualifications

B.A., Geography, Oxford, 1975

Ph.D., London (UCL), 1980

Professional membership

Fellow of Royal Geographical Society (with the Institute of British Geographers)

British Society for Geomorphology

Biogeography Research Group

History and Philosophy of Geography Study Group

Quaternary Research Association

American Quaternary Association (AMQUA)

British Institute at Ankara

International Society for Diatom Research

American Geophysical Union

Roles on external bodies

Editor: Quaternary Science Reviews (Elsevier)

Teaching interests

Physical Geography; Environmental issues (undergraduate and taught Masters)

Undergraduate: 

Stage 1         

•           Introduction to physical geography 

Stage 2

•           Quaternary Environments and Archaeology
•           Geographical Research 
 •          European overseas Fieldtrip

Postgraduate:

•           Sustainability issues and debates

Staff serving as external examiners

External examiner: undergraduate programmes in Geography, University of Cambridge

Research interests

Holocene environmental change, palaeolimnology, diatom and stable isotope analyses, environmental archaeology, Mediterranean and Africa

Research degrees awarded to supervised students

Matthew Jones, Ph.D. 2004, "High-resolution records of climate change from lacustrine stable isotopes through the last two millennia in western Turkey’.
Amy Burgess. Ph.D. 2004, "The development of diatom-nutrient palaeolimnological inference models for UK lowland reservoirs".
Rebecca Turner, Ph.D. 2007 ‘Late Quaternary fire histories in the East Mediterranean region’.
Jessie Woodbridge, Ph.D. 2009 'Late-Holocene lake diatom-inferred palaeoclimate from central Turkey'
Zuzanna Stroynowski, Ph.D. 2009 A high-resolution climatic study of the Norwegian and Iberian shelves during the Late Holocene: a diatom perspective' 
Samantha Allcock, Ph.D. 2013 ‘Holocene climate variability and socio-evolutionary trajectories, central Turkey’

Grants & contracts

recent grants

2006-2007         Blaustein Visiting fellowship, Stanford University

2007-08  €14,520 from ESF, under the MEDCLIVAR initiative, for a workshop meeting (June 2008, Pisa) on 'Oxygen isotopes as tracers of Mediterranean climate variability: linking past, present and future' with Dr M Jones (Nottingham) and Dr G Zanchetta (Pisa)

2009-10  $22,000 from National Geographic Society, Committee for Research and Exploration ‘5000 years of climatic and cultural change in Cappadocia, central Turkey’.  [grant no. 8632-09]

2010-11   British Institute at Ankara, “5000 years of climatic and cultural change in Cappadocia, central Turkey”, £13,500

2011-2015   £146,741 from Leverhulme Trust on “Deforesting Europe: a pollen-based reconstruction of Holocene land cover change”, with Dr R Fyfe and Dr J Woodbridge

2012-2013    £46,291 from NERC on “Climate change and the Plague of Justinian”; with Warren Eastwood (Birmingham), Matt Jones (Nottingham) and NIGL.

2015-18 £298,065; £160,168 to Plymouth, from Leverhulme on “Changing the face ofthe Mediterranean: land cover and population since the advent of farming”, withRalph Fyfe and Jessie Woodbridge, along with UCL colleagues

 

 

 

 

Key publications are highlighted

Journals
Articles
Roberts N 2016 '2200 BC-A climatic breakdown as a cause for the collapse of the Old World?' ANTIQUITY 90, (351) 819-821 Author Site , DOI PEARL
Roberts N, Allcock SL, Arnaud F, Dean JR, Eastwood WJ, Jones MD, Leng MJ, Metcalfe SE, Malet E & Woodbridge J 2016 'A tale of two lakes: a multi-proxy comparison of Lateglacial and Holocene environmental change in Cappadocia, Turkey' JOURNAL OF QUATERNARY SCIENCE 31, (4) 348-362 Author Site , DOI
Luterbacher J, Werner JP, Smerdon JE, Fernández-Donado L, González-Rouco FJ, Barriopedro D, Ljungqvist FC, Büntgen U, Zorita E & Wagner S 2016 'European summer temperatures since Roman times' Environmental Research Letters 11, (2) 024001-024001 , DOI PEARL
Holmes JA, Tindall J, Roberts N, Marshall W, Marshall JD, Bingham A, Feeser I, O'Connell M, Atkinson T & Jourdan A-L 2016 'Lake isotope records of the 8200-year cooling event in western Ireland: Comparison with model simulations' QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS 131, 341-349 Author Site , DOI PEARL
Ruddiman WF, Fuller DQ, Kutzbach JE, Tzedakis PC, Kaplan JO, Ellis EC, Vavrus SJ, Roberts CN, Fyfe R & He F 2016 'Late Holocene climate: Natural or anthropogenic?' Reviews of Geophysics 54, (1) 93-118 , DOI PEARL
Izdebski A, Pickett J, Roberts N & Waliszewski T 2016 'The environmental, archaeological and historical evidence for regional climatic changes and their societal impacts in the Eastern Mediterranean in Late Antiquity' Quaternary Science Reviews 136, 189-208 , DOI
Dean JR, Jones MD, Leng MJ, Noble SR, Metcalfe SE, Sloane HJ, Sahy D, Eastwood WJ & Roberts CN 2015 'Eastern Mediterranean hydroclimate over the late glacial and Holocene, reconstructed from the sediments of Nar lake, central Turkey, using stable isotopes and carbonate mineralogy' Quaternary Science Reviews 124, 162-174 , DOI PEARL
Fyfe RM, Woodbridge J & Roberts N 2015 'From forest to farmland: pollen-inferred land cover change across Europe using the pseudobiomization approach' Glob Chang Biol 21, (3) 1197-1212 Author Site , DOI
Dean JR, Eastwood WJ, Roberts N, Jones MD, Yigitbasioglu H, Allcock SL, Woodbridge J, Metcalfe SE & Leng MJ 2015 'Tracking the hydro-climatic signal from lake to sediment: A field study from central Turkey' Journal of Hydrology 529, 608-621 , DOI
Hall T, Toms P, McGuinness M, Parker C & Roberts N 2015 'Where's the Geography department? The changing administrative place of Geography in UK higher education' AREA 47, (1) 56-64 Author Site , DOI
Woodbridge J, Fyfe RM & Roberts N 2014 'A comparison of remotely sensed and pollen-based approaches to mapping Europe's land cover' JOURNAL OF BIOGEOGRAPHY 41, (11) 2080-2092 Author Site , DOI
Allcock SL & Roberts N 2014 'Changes in regional settlement patterns in Cappadocia (central Turkey) since the Neolithic: a combined site survey perspective' Anatolian Studies 64, 33-58 , DOI
Lechterbeck J, Edinborough K, Kerig T, Fyfe R, Roberts N & Shennan S 2014 'Is Neolithic land use correlated with demography? An evaluation of pollen-derived land cover and radiocarbon-inferred demographic change from Central Europe' HOLOCENE 24, (10) 1297-1307 Author Site , DOI PEARL
Haldon J, Roberts N, Izdebski A, Fleitmann D, McCormick M, Cassis M, Doonan O, Eastwood W, Elton H & Ladstätter S 2014 'The climate and environment of Byzantine Anatolia: integrating science, history and archaeology' Journal of Interdisciplinary History 45, (2) 113-161 , DOI
Woodbridge J, Fyfe RM, Roberts N, Downey S, Edinborough K & Shennan S 2014 'The impact of the Neolithic agricultural transition in Britain: a comparison of pollen-based land-cover and archaeological C-14 date-inferred population change' JOURNAL OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL SCIENCE 51, 216-224 Author Site , DOI
Dean JR, Jones MD, Leng MJ, Sloane HJ, Roberts CN, Woodbridge J, Swann GEA, Metcalfe SE, Eastwood WJ & Yigitbasioglu H 2013 'Palaeo-seasonality of the last two millennia reconstructed from the oxygen isotope composition of carbonates and diatom silica from Nar Gölü, central Turkey' Quaternary Science Reviews 66, 35-44 , DOI
2013 'Palynology and Mediterranean vegetation history' Flora Mediterranea 23, , DOI
Zanchetta G, Van Welden A, Baneschi I, Drysdale R, Sadori L, Roberts N, Giardini M, Beck C, Pascucci V & Sulpizio R 2012 'Multiproxy record for the last 4500 years from Lake Shkodra (Albania/Montenegro)' JOURNAL OF QUATERNARY SCIENCE 27, (8) 780-789 Author Site , DOI
Roberts N, Moreno A, Valero-Garcés BL, Corella JP, Jones M, Allcock S, Woodbridge J, Morellón M, Luterbacher J & Xoplaki E 2012 'Palaeolimnological evidence for an east–west climate see-saw in the Mediterranean since AD 900' Global and Planetary Change 84-85, 23-34 , DOI PEARL
Daniau A-L, Bartlein PJ, Harrison SP, Prentice IC, Brewer S, Friedlingstein P, Harrison-Prentice TI, Inoue J, Izumi K & Marlon JR 2012 'Predictability of biomass burning in response to climate changes' GLOBAL BIOGEOCHEMICAL CYCLES 26, Author Site , DOI
Vanniere B, Power MJ, Roberts N, Tinner W, Carrion J, Magny M, Bartlein P, Colombaroli D, Daniau AL & Finsinger W 2011 'Circum-Mediterranean fire activity and climate changes during the mid-Holocene environmental transition (8500-2500 cal. BP)' HOLOCENE 21, (1) 53-73 Author Site , DOI
Roberts N, Eastwood WJ, Kuzucuoglu C, Fiorentino G & Caracuta V 2011 'Climatic, vegetation and cultural change in the eastern Mediterranean during the mid-Holocene environmental transition' HOLOCENE 21, (1) 147-162 Author Site , DOI
Woodbridge J & Roberts N 2011 'Late Holocene climate of the Eastern Mediterranean inferred from diatom analysis of annually-laminated lake sediments' QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS 30, (23-24) 3381-3392 Author Site , DOI
Zanchetta G, Sulpizio R, Roberts N, Cioni R, Eastwood WJ, Siani G, Caron B, Paterne M & Santacroce R 2011 'Tephrostratigraphy, chronology and climatic events of the Mediterranean basin during the Holocene: An overview' HOLOCENE 21, (1) 33-52 Author Site , DOI
Daley TJ, Thomas ER, Holmes JA, Street-Perrott FA, Chapman MR, Tindall JC, Valdes PJ, Loader NJ, Marshall JD & Wolff EW 2011 'The 8200yr BP cold event in stable isotope records from the North Atlantic region' Global and Planetary Change 79, (3-4) 288-302 , DOI
Roberts N, Brayshaw D, Kuzucuoglu C, Perez R & Sadori L 2011 'The mid-Holocene climatic transition in the Mediterranean: Causes and consequences' HOLOCENE 21, (1) 3-13 Author Site , DOI
Fyfe R, Roberts N & Woodbridge J 2010 'A pollen-based pseudobiomisation approach to anthropogenic land-cover change' HOLOCENE 20, (7) 1165-1171 Author Site , DOI
Leng MJ, Jones MD, Frogley MR, Eastwood WJ, Kendrick CP & Roberts CN 2010 'Detrital carbonate influences on bulk oxygen and carbon isotope composition of lacustrine sediments from the Mediterranean' GLOBAL AND PLANETARY CHANGE 71, (3-4) 175-182 Author Site , DOI
Turner R, Roberts N, Eastwood WJ, Jenkins E & Rosen A 2010 'Fire, climate and the origins of agriculture: micro-charcoal records of biomass burning during the last glacial-interglacial transition in Southwest Asia' JOURNAL OF QUATERNARY SCIENCE 25, (3) 371-386 Author Site , DOI
Hoelzmann P, Schwalb A, Roberts N, Cooper P & Burgess A 2010 'Hydrological response of an east-Saharan palaeolake (NW Sudan) to early-Holocene climate' HOLOCENE 20, (4) 537-549 Author Site , DOI
Djamali M, Akhani H, Andrieu-Ponel V, Braconnot P, Brewer S, de Beaulieu J-L, Fleitmann D, Fleury J, Gasse F & Guibal F 2010 'Indian Summer Monsoon variations could have affected the early-Holocene woodland expansion in the Near East' HOLOCENE 20, (5) 813-820 Author Site , DOI
Woodbridge J & Roberts N 2010 'Linking neo- and palaeolimnology: a case study using crater lake diatoms from central Turkey' JOURNAL OF PALEOLIMNOLOGY 44, (3) 855-871 Author Site , DOI
Woodbridge J, Roberts N & Cox EJ 2010 'MORPHOLOGY AND ECOLOGY OF A NEW CENTRIC DIATOM FROM CAPPADOCIA (CENTRAL TURKEY)' DIATOM RESEARCH 25, (1) 195-212 Author Site
Roberts CN, Zanchetta G & Jones MD 2010 'Oxygen isotopes as tracers of Mediterranean climate variability: An introduction' GLOBAL AND PLANETARY CHANGE 71, (3-4) 135-140 Author Site , DOI
Roberts N & Rosen A 2009 'Diversity and Complexity in Early Farming Communities of Southwest Asia: New Insights into the Economic and Environmental Basis of Neolithic Çatalhöyük' Current Anthropology 50, (3) 393-402 , DOI
Turner R, Roberts N & Jones MD 2008 'Climatic pacing of Mediterranean fire histories from lake sedimentary microcharcoal' GLOBAL AND PLANETARY CHANGE 63, (4) 317-324 Author Site , DOI
England A, Eastwood WJ, Roberts CN, Turner R & Haldon JF 2008 'Historical landscape change in Cappadocia (central Turkey): a palaeoecological investigation of annually laminated sediments from Nar lake' HOLOCENE 18, (8) 1229-1245 Author Site , DOI
Jones MD & Roberts CN 2008 'Interpreting lake isotope records of Holocene environmental change in the Eastern Mediterranean' QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL 181, 32-38 Author Site , DOI
Roberts N, Jones MD, Benkaddour A, Eastwood WJ, Filippi ML, Frogley MR, Lamb HF, Leng MJ, Reed JM & Stein M 2008 'Stable isotope records of Late Quaternary climate and hydrology from Mediterranean lakes: the ISOMED synthesis' QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS 27, (25-26) 2426-2441 Author Site , DOI
Eastwood WJ, Leng MJ, Roberts N & Davis B 2007 'Holocene climate change in the eastern Mediterranean region: a comparison of stable isotope and pollen data from Lake Golhisar, southwest Turkey' Journal of Quaternary Science 22, (4) 327-341
Jones MD, Roberts CN & Leng MJ 2007 'Quantifying climatic change through the last glacial-interglacial transition based on lake isotope palaeohydrology from central Turkey' Quaternary Research 67, (3) 463-473
Jones M, Roberts N, Leng MJ & Turkes M 2006 'A high-resolution late Holocene lake isotope record fromTurkey and links to North Atlantic and monsoon climate' Geology 34 (5), 361-364 , DOI
Boyer P, Roberts N & Baird D 2006 'Holocene environment and settlement on the Carsamba alluvial fan, south-central Turkey: Integrating geoarchaeology and archaeological field survey' Geoarchaeology-An International Journal 21, (7) 675-698
Jones MD, Leng MJ, Roberts CN, Turkes M & Moyeed R 2005 'A coupled calibration and modelling approach to the understanding of dry-land lake oxygen isotope records' Journal of Paleolimnology 34, (3) 391-411
Roberts N 2002 'Did prehistoric landscape management retard the post-glacial spread of woodland in Southwest Asia?' Antiquity 76, (294) 1002-1010
Eastwood WJ, Tibby J, Roberts N, Birks HJB & Lamb HF 2002 'The environmental impact of the Minoan eruption of Santorini (Thera): statistical analysis of palaeoecological data from Golhisar, southwest Turkey' Holocene 12, (4) 431-444
Sayer CD & Roberts N 2001 'Establishing realistic restoration targets for nutrient-enriched shallow lakes: linking diatom ecology and palaeoecology at the Attenborough Ponds, UK' Hydrobiologia 448, (1-3) 117-142
Leng M, Barker P, Greenwood P, Roberts N & Reed J 2001 'Oxygen isotope analysis of diatom silica and authigenic calcite from Lake Pinarbasi, Turkey' Journal of Paleolimnology 25, (3) 343-349
Roberts N, Meadows ME & Dodson JR 2001 'The history of mediterranean-type environments: climate, culture and landscape' Holocene 11, (6) 631-634
Meadows ME, Dodson JR & Roberts CN 2001 'The Holocene history of mediterranean-type environments in the Eastern Hemisphere' The Holocene 11, (6) 631-768
Roberts N, Reed JM, Leng MJ, Kuzucuoglu C, Fontugne M, Bertaux J, Woldring H, Bottema S, Black S & Hunt E 2001 'The tempo of Holocene climatic change in the eastern Mediterranean region: new high-resolution crater-lake sediment data from central Turkey' Holocene 11, (6) 721-736
Verschuren D, Tibby J, Sabbe K & Roberts N 2000 'EFFECTS OF DEPTH, SALINITY, AND SUBSTRATE ON THE INVERTEBRATE COMMUNITY OF A FLUCTUATING TROPICAL LAKE' Ecology 81, (1) 164-182 , DOI
Reed JM, Roberts N & Leng MJ 1999 'An evaluation of the diatom response to Late Quaternary environmental change in two lakes in the Konya Basin, Turkey, by comparison with stable isotope data' Quaternary Science Reviews 18, (4-5) 631-646 , DOI
Roberts N, Black S, Boyer P, Eastwood WJ, Griffiths HI, Lamb HF, Leng MJ, Parish R, Reed JM & Twigg D 1999 'Chronology and stratigraphy of Late Quaternary sediments in the Konya Basin, Turkey: Results from the KOPAL Project' QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS 18, (4-5) 611-630 Author Site , DOI
Eastwood WJ, Pearce NJG, Westgate JA, Perkins WT, Lamb HF & Roberts N 1999 'Geochemistry of Santorini tephra in lake sediments from Southwest Turkey' GLOBAL AND PLANETARY CHANGE 21, (1-3) 17-29 Author Site , DOI
Eastwood WJ, Roberts N, Lamb HF & Tibby JC 1999 'Holocene environmental change in southwest Turkey: a palaeoecological record of lake and catchment-related changes' Quaternary Science Reviews 18, (4-5) 671-695 , DOI
Verschuren D, Cocquyt C, Tibby J, Roberts CN & Leavitt PR 1999 'Long-term dynamics of algal and invertebrate communities in a small, fluctuating tropical soda lake' Limnology and Oceanography 44, (5) 1216-1231 , DOI
Verschuren D, Tibby J, Leavitt PR & Roberts CN 1999 'The environmental history of a climate-sensitive lake in the former 'White Highlands' of central Kenya' AMBIO 28, (6) 494-501 Author Site
Roberts N, Kuzucuoglu C & Karabiyikoglu M 1999 'The Late Quaternary in the Eastern Mediterranean region: an introduction' QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS 18, (4-5) 497-499 Author Site
Books
Roberts N 2014 The Holocene, 3rd ed. Oxford Wiley-Blackwell
National Research Council 2006 National Research Council STR Committee 2006 Surface temperature reconstructions for the past 2,000 years. National Academies Press, Washington DC.
Chapters
Roberts CN 2015 'Holocene climate change and archaeological implications, with particular reference to the East Mediterranean region' in Kerner S; Dann RJ; Bansgaard P Climate and Ancient Societies Copenhagen Museum Tusculanum Press 27-39
Luterbacher J, García-Herrera R, Akcer-On S, Allan R, Alvarez-Castro MC, Benito G, Booth J, Büntgen U, Cagatay N & Colombaroli D 2012 'A review of 2000 years of paleoclimatic evidence in the mediterranean' The Climate of the Mediterranean Region 87-185 , DOI
Roberts N 2011 'The idea of evolution in geographical thought' The SAGE Handbook of Geographical Knowledge 441-451 , DOI
Eastwood WJ, Boyer P & Roberts CN 2007 'Pollen analysis at Çatalhöyük' in Hodder I Excavating Çatalhöyük. South, North and KOPAL Area reports from the 1995-99 seasons. Çatalhöyük Research Project volume 3, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research / British Institute of Archaeology at Ankara Monograph 573-580
Boyer P, Merrick J & Roberts CN 2007 'The KOPAL on-site and off-site excavations at Çatalhöyük 1996-2001' in Hodder I Excavating Çatalhöyük. South, North and KOPAL Area reports from the 1995-99 seasons Çatalhöyük Research Project volume 3, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research / British Institute of Archaeology at Ankara Monograph 553-572
Rosen A & Roberts CN 2006 'The Nature of Çatalhöyük: People and their Changing Environments on the Konya Plain' in Hodder I Çatalhöyük perspectives: themes from the 1995-1999 seasons. Çatalhöyük Research Project volume 6, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research / British Institute of Archaeology at Ankara Monograph 39-53
Roberts N, Stevenson AC, Davis B, Cheddadi R, Brewer S & Rosen A 2004 'Holocene climate, environment and cultural change in the circum-Mediterranean region' 343-362
Gasse F & Roberts CN 2004 'Late Quaternary hydrologic changes in the arid and semiarid belt of northern Africa: implications for past atmospheric circulation' in Diaz HF; Bradley RS The Hadley Circulation: Present Past & Future Kluwer, Dordrecht 313-345
Conference Papers
Sadori L, Zanchetta G, Van Welden A, Baneschi I, Drysdale R, Giardini M, Gliozzi E, Mazzini I & Roberts N 2012 'Climate changes at Lake Shkodra (Albania): The last 4500 years' //0 //0 35-38 , DOI

Links

Leverhulme-funded "Deforesting Europe" project web-site
http://www.plymouth.ac.uk/pages/view.asp?page=35232


Leverhulme-funded "Mediterranean landscapes" project we-site