Tom Spencer

Tom Spencer
Department of Geography
Cambridge Coastal Research Unit

Tom Spencer is Professor of Coastal Dynamics and Director of Research, Department of Geography. He is Director of the Cambridge Coastal Research Unit (CCRU) which focusses on the role coastal ecosystems play in i) hazard regulation (through wave energy dissipation); ii) climate regulation (through carbon sequestration); and iii) disaster risk reduction. Tom’s own research on ‘biosedimentary systems’ (sand dunes, saltmarshes, seagrasses, mangrove forests and coral reefs) blends field monitoring, laboratory experimentation, database mining and numerical modelling. Regional interests include shallow marine ecosystems in SE Asia, the Caribbean Sea and the western Indian Ocean; Venice lagoon; and particularly the UK east coast. He is interested in providing validation / calibration services for remote sensing outputs, and working alongside EO specialists to develop sensors, algorithms, and applications for the coastal zone.

Selected publications
Evans BR, Möller I, Spencer T, Smith G 2019 Dynamics of salt marsh margins are related to their three-dimensional functional form. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms
doi: 10.1002/esp.4614
Pollard JA, Brooks SM, Spencer T 2019 Harmonising topographic & remotely sensed datasets, a reference dataset for shoreline and beach change analysis. Scientific Data 6: 42
Pollard JA, Brooks SM. Spencer T, Christie EK, Möller I 2019 Will nature work with us? Erosion and flooding impacts on a UK barrier. In: Wang P, Rosati JD, Vallee M (Eds.), Coastal Sediments 2019. World Scientific : Singapore, 114-127
Schuerch M, Spencer T, Temmerman S, Kirwan ML, Wolff C, Lincke D, McOwen CJ, Pickering MD, Reef R, Vafeidis AT, Hinkel J, Nicholls RJ, Brown S 2018 Future response of global coastal wetlands to sea-level rise. Nature 561: 231-234
Pollard JA, Spencer T, Jude S 2018 Big data approaches for coastal flood risk assessment and emergency response. WIREs Climate Change 2018 9:e543
Brooks SB, Spencer T, Christie EK 2017 Storm impacts and shoreline recovery: Mechanisms and controls in the southern North Sea. Geomorphology 283: 48-60
Hamylton S, Spencer T, Hagan AB 2012 Spatial modelling of benthic cover using remote sensing data in the Aldabra lagoon, western Indian Ocean. Marine Ecology Progress Series 460, 35-47
doi: 10.3354/meps09779
Friess DA, Spencer T, Smith GM, Möller I, Brooks SM, Thomson AG 2012 Remote sensing of geomorphological and ecological change in response to saltmarsh managed realignment, The Wash, UK. International Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation 18, 57-68