Dr Andrew FolkardSenior Lecturer
Andrew’s research interests focus primarily on eco-hydrodynamics: the ways in which currents, waves and turbulent mixing processes affect, and are affected by, ecological phenomena from plankton to seagrass meadows. He is particularly interested in the effects of heterogeneity on the hydrodynamics and ecology of surface waterbodies. More recently, he has developed an interest in the area of environmental impacts of, and on, offshore renewable energy installations.
Andrew also actively researches the development of learning and teaching, particularly of quantitative methods in geography and environmental sciences. He was awarded a prestigious National Teaching Fellowship by the UK Higher Education Academy in 2006 in recognition of his work in this area. He is currently Director of Geography Undergraduate Programmes in LEC.
Andrew has 20 years of experience of using fieldwork, laboratory flume experiments and remote sensing to investigate a range of hydrodynamic problems in lakes, rivers, coastal waters and oceans. His recent publications have focussed on:
- Effects of lake mixing and stratification on nutrient pathways in lakes (with the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology’s Lake Ecosystems Group)
- The hydrodynamic consequences of seagrass meadow fragmentation (with the Dutch Institute for Sea Research, NIOZ)
- Scouring around offshore wind turbines (funded by the EPSRC Supergen Wind programme)
- The hydraulics of vegetated channels in a tropical environment (with the Universiti Putra Malaysia)
Andrew’s current research and doctoral student supervision covers a range of topics, all of which cluster around the key topics of hydrodynamics-ecology-biogeochemistry interactions, landscape patterning, fragmentation and heterogeneity; and impacts of societal activities on ecosystems and vice versa.
Teaching & Teaching Development
Andrew teaches across physical geography and in particular in his research area of aquatic processes and environments. He also teaches extensively on the core skills modules of our Geography degree schemes, focussing in particular on quantitative skills and research design. In addition, he is the programme consultant for the BSc/FdSC in Marine Biology and Coastal Zone Management at Blackpool and the Fylde College, an affiliate institution of Lancaster University. He has grown collaboration with the Student Union’s Green Lancaster team, and the university’s Facilities team, enabling students to carry out projects with real consequences and benefits for the university. Currently, together with Small World Consulting, he is working with Green Lancaster on their NUS-funded Edible Campus project, and seeking to develop ways in which this can be incorporated in student learning. Andrew is a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Geography in Higher Education.