Rachel Walcott is the head of the Earth Systems section.

Dr Walcott started her academic career at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand where she gained a BSc(hons) and a research Masters in geology and geophysics. After working in Canada and the UK, she went on to do a PhD in structural geology at Universiteit Utrecht, The Netherlands. This was followed by a postdoc at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Géologie, Paris and two Research Fellowships at the University of Edinburgh in tectonic geomorphology, the study of surface processes.

A unifying theme to Dr Walcott’s research has been to better understand the role that tectonic processes have on our environment. She is currently co-supervising Andrew Dobrzanski, a PhD student at the University of Edinburgh, who is examining the extent with which fluids help concentrate heavy rare earth elements, focussing on the Norra Karr igneous complex in Sweden. Today Dr Walcott’s research focusses on the interaction of tectonic, geomorphic and biological processes. Current research topics include the processes that control the evolution of river networks, the influence of biomass on surface processes and the role of biology on mineral generation.

Rachel is an Honorary Fellow of the University of Edinburgh, a Fellow of the Geological Society of London, and a member of the American Geophysical Union (AGU), and the Mineralogical Society of Great Britain.

Ten selected publications

  1. Campbell, L. R., Phillips, R.J., Walcott, R.C. & Lloyd, G.E. 2019. Rupture geometries in anisotropic amphibolite recorded by pseudotachylytes in the Gairloch Shear Zone, NW Scotland. Scottish Journal of Geology: https://sjg.lyellcollection.org/content/early/2019/07/12/sjg2019-003
  2. Campbell L. S., J. Charnock, A. Dyer, S. Hillier, S. Chenery, F. Stoppa, C. M. B. Henderson, Walcott, R. & M. Rumsey. 2016. Determination of zeolite-group mineral compositions by electron probe microanalysis. Mineralogical Magazine 80 (5): 781807. https://doi.org/10.1180/minmag.2016.080.044
  3. Sinclair, H., Mudd, S., Dingle, E., Hobley, D., Robinson, R. & Walcott, R. 2016. Squeezing river catchments through tectonics: Shortening and erosion across the Indus Valley, NW Himalaya. Geological Society of America Bulletin 129 (1-2): 203-217. https://doi.org/10.1130/B31435.1
  4. Upton, P. Craw D. and Walcott, R.C. 2014. Far-Field Deformation Resulting from Rheologic Differences Interacting with Tectonic Stresses: An Example from the Pacific/Australian Plate Boundary in Southern New Zealand. Geosciences 4 (3): 93-113. https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences4030093
  5. M.D. Hurst, S.M. Mudd, M. Attal, K. Yoo and R. Walcott. 2013. Influence of lithology on hillslope morphology and response to tectonic forcing in the Sierra Nevada of California. Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface 118: 1-20. https://doi.org/10.1002/jgrf.20049
  6. D. Craw, P. Upton, R. Walcott, C. Burridge, and J. Waters. 2012. Tectonic controls on the evolution of the Clutha River catchment, New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Geology and Geophysics 55 (4): 345-359. https://doi.org/10.1080/00288306.2012.709184               
  7. M.D. Hurst, S.M. Mudd, R.C. Walcott, M. Attal, and K. Yoo. 2012. Using Hilltop Curvature to Derive the Spatial Distribution of Erosion Rates. Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface 117: https://doi.org/10.1029/2011JF002057.
  8. Walcott R.C. and M. A. Summerfield. 2009. Universality and variability in basin outlet spacing: implications for the two-dimensional form of drainage basins. Basin Research 21 (2): 147-155. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2117.2008.00379.x
  9. Walcott, R. and M. Summerfield. 2008. Scale dependence of hypsometric integrals: an analysis of southeast African basins. Geomorphology 96: 174-186. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geomorph.2007.08.001 
  10. Walcott C.R. and S.H. White. 1998. Constraints on the kinematics of post-orogenic extension imposed by stretching lineations in the Aegean region. Tectonophysics 298 (1): 155-175.

For further publications see: National Museums Scotland Research Repository.

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