Skip to main content
School of Geography

Dr Giuditta Trinci


Lecturer in Physical Geography

Telephone: +44 (0)20 7882 2753
Room Number: Geography Building, Room 223


My research focuses on fluvial processes (the flux of water and sediment) and their dynamic interaction with morphology and ecology; in particular, I am interested in how turbulence might shapes biological riverine features and processes to find a way to assess and actively improve the ecological/hydrological status of a river. I want to understand how flow dynamics influences the behaviour of fish in a riverine environment, looking in particular at how the hydraulic characteristics of their physical habitat affect their ability to find both adequate shelter from floods and sufficient food supplies.


Research Interests:

Hydromorphology of river ecosystems and their influence on aquatic biota
Hydromorphology is an important component of the assessment of streams and rivers. The Water Framework Directive requires the hydromorphological assessment, which should include an evaluation of modifications in flow regime, sediment transport, river morphology, and lateral channel continuity. In addition, river assessment need to capture the ecological values of rivers by evaluate the impact of hydromorphological factors on aquatic biota (vegetation, macroinvertebrates and fish). Despite this, the effective understanding on the response of organisms to hydraulic and geomorphology changes over time and space is weak and need to more focus.

Implementation of river assessment to restoration design and river management
The general aim of this research is the development and testing of an overall hydromorphological assessment framework, which should be a widely applicable system for channel - floodplain hydromorphological survey,  assessment and classification, with specific consideration to channel dynamics  and floodplains, and suitable for the WFD. The evaluation of the morphological conditions is enhanced by other assessments i.e. the assessment of the hydrological regime alteration, longitudinal fish fauna continuity, and the characterization of physical in-stream and riparian habitats. Further than the need for a more comprehensive hydromorphological assessment, there is also the necessity for developing a simpler tool which can be used for an initial screening and identification of critical hydromorphological conditions at microscale and catchment scale. In fact, most of the hydromorphological assessment methods require time demanding data collection and analysis, and their application to a wide number of reaches by agencies in charge of the WFD monitoring is unfeasible.


Assessing fish habitat in an urban environment 

Anthropogenic alterations due to the rapid growth of urbanisation have strongly negatively impacted river ecosystem health worldwide, in particular aquatic habitats that provide suitable spots for aquatic and terrestrial species have been strongly impacted. There is a need to protect and preserve the fauna in anthropogenically altered rivers, however, general guidelines to assess the habitat health in an urban environment are missing. A combination of field  (ADV, underwater camera, TS) and modelling techniques provides insights to assess and better understanding of habitat changes to inform river restoration. 


Trinci, G., Harvey, G. L., Henshaw, A. J., Bertoldi, W., & Hölker, F. (2020). Turbulence, instream wood and fish: Ecohydraulic interactions under field conditions. Ecohydrology, e2211.

 Trinci, G., Harvey, G. L., Henshaw, A. J., Bertoldi, W., & Hölker, F. (2017). Life in turbulent flows: interactions between hydrodynamics and aquatic organisms in rivers. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Water, 4(3).

Back to top