DR Philip Marren

DR Philip Marren


  • Fluvial Geomorphology, Fluvial Sedimentology, Hydrology



  • I am a fluvial geomorphologist with a wide range of interests. I gained my PhD at Keele University in the United Kingdom, investigating the role of meltwater during the deglaciation of the last ice-sheet in Scotland. After making my first visit to Iceland in August 1996, and then returning in November to witness the glacier outburst flood (jökulhlaup) at Skeiðarársandur, I made annual (sometimes twice annual) research trips to Iceland through to 2004. My research in Iceland aimed to understand the formation of proglacial fluvial landscapes by linking river flows of different discharges with glacier advance and retreat patterns.

    In 2001 I left the UK and moved to South Africa, where I spent three years at the University of the Witwatersrand. My time in Africa widened my research interests to include low gradient meandering rivers and their floodplains. Following my time at the University of the Witwatersrand I returned to the UK, and broadened my experience further by gaining a Masters in Hydrology for Environmental Management at Imperial College London and then spending a year working for White Young Green as an environmental consultant. I moved back into academia by taking up a research position at the University of British Columbia, Canada, where I spent a year investigating the impact of the mountain pine beetle on rivers in the central interior of British Columbia. In late 2008 I moved from Canada to Melbourne, where I took up my current position at the University of Melbourne. 

    Since arriving to Australia, my research has focused on floodplain formation and processes. This includes the role of river regulation in changing geomorphological processes on floodplains, and the role of fluvial geomorphology in controlling floodplain habitats. In particular, I have been focusing on the evolution of the lower Ovens River floodplain, and the way in which geomorpological changes drive the distribution of water across the fl   


Selected publications



Education and training

  • M Sc, Imperial College London 2006
  • PHD, Keele University 2000
  • B Sc (Hons), 1994
  • B Sc (Hons), University of Luton 1994

Awards and honors

  • Fellow of the Royal Geographic Society, 2011



Available for supervision

  • Y

Supervision Statement

  • I am interested in supervising research students at all levels from Honours to PhD. Interested students are invited to contact me directly to discuss potential research projects. I am currently interested in supervising projects on a range of topics in fluvial geomorphology, river management and hydrology: feel free to talk to me if you have an idea for a topic not listed below. Specific topics that I am interested in at the moment include:

    Avulsion processes in low energy/low sediment load rivers.

    Proglacial rivers - the effects of glacier retreat (climate change) on proglacial river systems.

    Fluvial processes and floodplain evolution (both the rate of change of modern floodplain/channel systems, and Quaternary/Holocene development of floodplains)

    Flood geomorphology, landscape response to catastrophic flooding, the role of vegetation in controlling the effects of flooding