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Durham University

Department of Geography

Staff Profile

Dr Tom Robinson, MSci (Hons.) 1st Class, PhD

Personal web page

Junior Research Fellow in the Department of Geography
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 33 41978
Fax: +44 (0) 191 33 41801
Room number: 310

(email at


2017-Present: Addison Wheeler Fellow - Department of Geography, Durham University

2015-2017: COFUND Junior Research Fellow - Department of Geography, Durham Univeristy

2014-2015: Post-Doctoral Research Assistant - Department of Geological Sciences, University of Canterbury, New Zealand

2011-2014: PhD in Hazard and Disaster Management - Department of Geological Sciences, University of Canterbury, New Zealand

2009-2010: Undergraduate Year Abroad - Department of Earth, Planetary and Space Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles

2007-2011: MSci in Geology and Geophysics - Royal School of Mines, Imperial College London

Research Overview

I am an Addison Wheeler Research Fellow (2017-2020) studying earthquake and landslide hazards in mountainous environments, focussing on modelling immediate and long-term impacts of earthquakes on the built and natural environment. My current research has 2 main points of focus: 1) using multi-scenario analysis to assess earthquake risk to residential buildings and population; 2) modelling earthquake-triggered landsliding and its subsequent evolution and risk to built infrastructure. This research involves assessing the vulnerability of buildings and infrastructure on a national-scale, as well as statistical analysis of the conditions that drive landslide processes during and after earthquakes. The research aims to better identify the spatial variability in earthquake risk at national scale and to allow better incorporation of initial and long-term landslide hazard into earthquake risk planning.

Research Groups

Research Interests

  • Earthquakes and Landslides
  • Natural Hazards and Disasters
  • Disaster Risk Management
  • Loss and Risk Assessments
  • Civil Defence and Emergency Management
  • Scenario Planning
  • Mountain and Landscape Processes

Indicators of Esteem

  • 2017: Plenary Speaker - PATA 2017: Day 3 Plenary at the PATA 2017 Conference in Blenhiem New Zealand. Talk title: Near real-time modelling of landslide dams from the 2016 Kaikoura earthquake
  • 2016: Invited Keynote Speaker: Seismological Society of America AGM
  • 2016: Lloyd's Bank Science of Risk Prize - Finalist:

    The aim of the Science of Risk prize is to identify published research that can contribute to innovation and better understanding of risk in insurance. A key aspect of the prize is the ability of the author to describe the significance and potential applications of their research. The criteria for judging include:

    • Relevance to the insurance industry;
    • Writing style;
    • Financial significance
    • Novelty
    • Quality of research.
  • 2015: Jim Cole Prize: awarded in recognition of academic excellence during PhD

Selected Publications

Journal Article

Doctoral Thesis

  • Robinson, T.R. Assessment of coseismic landsliding from an Alpine Fault earthquake scenario, New Zealand. 2015;258.


Show all publications

Media Contacts

Available for media contact about:

  • Geological hazards: Earthquakes
  • Geological hazards: Landslides
  • Geological hazards: Natural Disasters and Catastrophes
  • Australasia & the Pacific: New Zealand Civil Defence and Emergency Management