Coastal and marine studies in the department of geography and environment at the University of Aberdeen

David R. Green*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The Department of Geography and Environment at the University of Aberdeen has a long history of coastal and marine teaching and research from the 1960s to the present day. Beginning with the work of Walton and latterly Ritchie, the paper traces the coastal and marine studies in the Geography degree programme, the development of the Marine and Coastal Resource Management degree, and the introduction of more recent courses such as Managing Our Coasts and Seas, Hydrography, and Land and Marine Conservation. Establishment of the Centre for Marine and Coastal Zone Management (CMCZM), and later the Aberdeen Institute for Coastal Science and Management (AICSM), provided a clear focus for continuing academic research into integrated coastal management and marine spatial planning. This complemented long-term involvement with Shell, SOTEAG (Shetland Oil Terminal Environmental Advisory Group), the Association for Geographic Information (AGI), OceanLab, the EUCC, and several Scottish coastal fora. The creation of the Unmanned Airborne Vehicle (UAV)/Unmanned Airborne System (UAS) Centre for Environmental Monitoring and Mapping (UCEMM) in 2014 brought together the role of remote sensing, GIS and photogrammetry in monitoring, mapping and modelling the coastal environment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)257-266
Number of pages10
JournalScottish Geographical Journal
Issue number3-4
Early online date9 Dec 2019
Publication statusPublished - 31 Dec 2019

Bibliographical note

I would like to thank Professor William Ritchie for providing valuable information for inclusion in this paper and for his continuing support for the work we undertake in the University of Aberdeen. Also, I would like to express my appreciation to the late Dr John Smith for opening my eyes to the coastline of Scotland, and for all those wonderful field excursions. It was a privilege to experience his perspectives on human and physical aspects of the coast as well as his insights into the history, culture and geology which he conveyed with the passion and enthusiasm of a true geographer and academic; a much-missed colleague.

Disclosure statement
No potential conflict of interest was reported by the author.


  • Coastal
  • geomorphology
  • GIS
  • marine
  • remote sensing


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