Matthew Blackett


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    Personal profile


    Matthew is an Associate Professor in Physical Geography and Natural Hazards, with a research career that has focused on using remote sensing  (mainly thermal) for the monitoring of GeoHazards (mainly volcanoes and earthquakes, but also urban heat islands and wildfires) via sensors found on NASA/ESA satellites. He has also worked more generally on geographical and interdisciplinary research projects involving the use of computing, programming, GIS and modelling, and is passionate to ensure that his scientific research is positively impactful for society. Matthew regularly contributes to the broadcast and written media on the themes above. In his current role as Curriculum Lead for Energy and Environment courses in the University, Matthew leads 10 undergraduate and postgraduate courses, and is insistent on the incorporation of cutting-edge research into all the teaching delivered on them.

    Matthew completed his PhD at King’s College, London (KCL), where he utilised his computing and geographic skills in the remote sensing of earthquakes and volcanoes. Following this, he completed a post-doctoral position, also at KCL, where he worked on a project comparing urban energy balance models (these form important components of global climate models). During his time at KCL, Matthew was a tutor and lecturer both there, and at the London School of Economics. Matthew started a lectureship at Coventry University in 2010 and since joining, has maintained his research interests and has had the opportunity to be a visiting researcher at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks (where he remains as Associate Faculty), the University of Hawaii, Manoa and the China University of Mining and Technology, Xuzhou; he has also been a visiting lecturer at Sichuan University, Chengdu (2017-2019).

    Outside of his research, Matthew has led many modules (both undergraduate and postgraduate) on themes ranging from GIS and remote sensing, natural hazards and their management, to more generic themes of general physical geography/geology and research skills. 

    Matthew has ambitious research plans, which consist of utilising, more widely, AI, and other modelling techniques, in the monitoring (and potential prediction) of volcanic activity and wildfires. He is in an excellent position to ensure this happens, in terms of profile and research contacts. He hopes that such work will be useful for society and can help in the achievement of several of the UN's SDGs.

    Research Interests

    Natural hazards; Natural disasters; Environmental change management; Remote sensing; Volcanoes; Earthquakes, Wildfires, Climate modelling, Landscape Modelling

    Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

    In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

    • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
    • SDG 13 - Climate Action

    Education/Academic qualification

    Higher Education Practice, Postgraduate Certificate, Coventry University

    Remote Sensing, Doctorate, An Investigation into the Detection and Analysis of Potential Land Surface Thermal Anomalies associated with Terrestrial Volcanoes and Earthquakes using NASA EOS and Other Post-2000 Satellite Observations, King's College London

    Geography, Degree, Queen Mary University of London

    Information Technology, MSc, Queen Mary University of London

    External positions

    Lecturer (Summer Immersion Programme), Sichuan University

    2017 → …

    Visiting Research Fellow, University of Hawaii

    Aug 2016

    Visiting Scholar, China University of Mining and Technology

    Mar 2013

    Applied Research Fellow + Affiliate Faculty Member, University of Alaska Fairbanks

    Jun 2012 → …


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