Dr Nicoletta Leonardi B.Sc.Eng., M.Sc.Eng., Ph.D., FHEA

Senior Lecturer Geography and Planning


    Personal Statement

    Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) in Coastal Resilience, Nicoletta is a hydrodynamic modeller and coastal scientist. She joined the University of Liverpool in 2016 after completing her PhD at Boston University, USA and her master's and bachelor's degree at the University of Pisa, Italy (summa cum laude). Her area of expertise includes the study, and modelling of sediment transport and morphological changes at a local to regional scale, and the study of nature-based solutions and coastal wetlands as storm defences. Additional areas of expertise include the development of stochastic and probabilistic models for the morphological evolution of coastal areas. She is currently managing a team of 8 PhD students working on numerical models and on the study of coastal resilience to climate change. The Italian National Academy of Sciences has prized her for her contribution to the study of coastal environments.

    She actively collaborates with the United States Geological Survey on the impact of violent storms on coastal areas based on the development of numerical tools to evaluate coastal vulnerability to storms, and on the understanding of energy dissipation by vegetation. Co-I of the NERC-funded BlueCoast project on coastal recovery and coastal management options analysis for different coastlines types in the UK, with focus on the impact of century-scale morphological changes on the hydrodynamic and sediment transport of the UK East Coast. She is collaborating with the National Oceanography Centre for the evaluation of flooding under extreme storm surge scenarios, with focus on tide-surge non-linear interactions. Has collaborated with the National Grid to evaluate the effectiveness of large sand-scaping interventions in Morecombe Bay. PI of an N8 AgriFood award, and BBSRC Award about the impact of sea level rise and storm surges on coastal areas and associated consequence for agriculture, and ecosystem shifts. She has also conducted extensive fieldwork campaigns in low-lying coastlines including the Mississippi river Delta, and the Apalachicola River.


    1) East China Normal University, sponsored visit - Visiting Scholar - (January-February, 2019)
    2) National Tsing Hua University (NTHU), Taiwan - Honorary staff member
    3) Italian National Academy of Sciences (Accademia dei Lincei), “Giuseppe and Paolo Gatto” prize, 2016. The prize was conferred at the presence of the Italian Head of State Sergio Mattarella and others such as the President of the Constitutional Court, Minister of public education, minister of cultural heritage, etc. This award recognizes outstanding achievements in the study of lagoons
    4) East China Normal University, 2019, Use of Numerical models for coastal areas - Invited speaker
    5) University of Manchester, UK, 2019, Resilience of coastal systems under changing environment - Invited speaker
    6) American Geophysical Union Fall meeting, Washington, 2018, session on “Dynamic coastal systems: human-landscape interactions under changing environmental conditions” - Invited speaker
    7) NTHU, Taiwan, 2017, Use of Numerical models in geoscience - Invited speaker
    8) International Space Science Institute, Bern Switzerland, 2016, Numerical models of coastal wetlands - Invited speaker
    9) University of Edinburgh, UK, 2016 Hydrodynamic and cellular automata models of deltaic wetlands - Invited speaker
    10) Utrecht University, NL, 2015, Using geometry to infer landscape stability - Invited speaker
    11) University of Exeter, UK, 2015, Building and Eroding Land, the role of marine processes - Invited speaker
    12) Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, MA, USA, 2014, Tidal rythmites in distributary mouth bars, Coastal Ocean Fluid Dynamics Talks - Invited speaker

    Personal webpage: http://people.bu.edu/nicleona/
    Twitter: @nicleona