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Dr Jessie Woodbridge

Dr Jessie Woodbridge

Associate Lecturer in Physical Geography / Research Development Advisor (Bioenvironment)


 +44 (0)1392 726994

 Amory C358a


Amory Building, University of Exeter, Rennes Drive, Exeter, EX4 4RJ , UK

 Office hours:

Please e-mail me to arrange a convenient time. 



My research background is based in Quaternary science and has focused on understanding past environmental, climatic and landscape change. I have developed research interests in applying palaeoecological techniques to address modern environmental challenges and in understanding human-environment interactions. I was previously a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Plymouth for seven years working on projects focussed on broad-scale landscape change across Europe and the Mediterranean (funded by the Leverhulme Trust). I am currently an Associate Lecturer in Physical Geography and Research Development Advisor at the University of Exeter. 


University of Plymouth:

Physical Geography: PhD (2005-2009)

Global Environmental Change: MRes (2004-2005)

Biological Sciences: BSc Hons (First class) (2001-2004)

Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy


Research group links


Research interests

My research is focused on understanding the temporal and spatial aspects of the interactions between human societies and the natural environment. This falls into three main themes: land-cover change and human-environment interactions, applied palaeoecology/ecological monitoring, and palaeoclimate reconstruction. 

Current and recent projects

1. Continental-scale Holocene vegetation change and human-environment interactions:

  • ‘Changing the face of the Mediterranean’ project (2015-2018) (Leverhulme Trust)
  • ‘Deforesting Europe’ project (2011-2015) (Leverhulme Trust)

2. Applied palaeoecology: modern ecological monitoring and water quality assessment:   

  • 'Trophic Diatom Index of Southwest Rivers’ (PI: 2014) (Westcountry Rivers Trust)
  • 'Exploring recent environmental change in an upland catchment using evidence from reservoir sediments’ (PI: 2010) (Seale Hayne Education Trust)

3. Mediterranean Holocene palaeoclimate:

  • Palaeoclimate, land cover and cultural change in central Turkey (Quaternary Research Fund) (PI: 2018)
  • PhD research: ‘Late Holocene palaeoenvironmental change and diatom analysis’ (2005-2009) (School of Geography, University of Plymouth scholarship)
  • Environmental and cultural change in the Eastern Mediterranean (2005-present) (on-going collaborative research)

Journal articles published / in press:

  1. Woodbridge, J., Roberts, N., Palmisano, A., Eastwood, W., Izdebski, A., Çakırlar, C., Woldring, H., Broothaerts, N., Kaniewski, D., Bevan, A., Shennan, S. and Fyfe, R. (in press) Southern Anatolia: regional land cover, vegetation and settlement. The Holocene: special issue on Mediterranean land cover and population change.  
  2. Woodbridge, J.  Roberts, C.N. and Fyfe, R.M. (in press) Vegetation and land-use change in northern Europe during Late Antiquity: a regional-scale pollen-based reconstruction. Environment and society during the long Late Antiquity: Late Antique Archaeology Journal.
  3. Palmisano, A., Woodbridge, J., Miebach, A., Langgut, D. Cheddadi, R., Greenberg, R., Leroy, S., Kaniewski, D., Khater, C., Litt, T., Bevan, A., Shennan, S., Fyfe, R. and Roberts, N. (in press) Levant: regional land cover, vegetation and settlement. The Holocene.
  4. Weiberg, E., Bevan, A., Palmisano, A., Woodbridge, J., Kouli, K., Finné, M., Legarra Herrero, B., Avramidis, P., Engel, M., Izdebski, A., Panajiotidis, S., Shennan, S., Fyfe, R., Roberts, N., Katsianis, M. and Maniatis, Y. (in press) Greece: regional land cover, vegetation and settlement. The Holocene.
  5. Labuhn, I., Finné, M., Izdebski, A., Roberts, N. and Woodbridge, J. (in press) Climatic changes and their impacts in the Mediterranean during the first millennium CE. Environment and society during the long Late Antiquity: Late Antique Archaeology Journal.
  6. Fyfe, R., Woodbridge, J., Palmisano, A., Bevan, A., Shennan, S., Burjachs, F., Legarra Herrero, B., Garcia Puchol, O., Carrión, J., Gil-Romero, G. and Roberts, N. (in press) Eastern Iberia: regional land cover, vegetation and settlement. The Holocene.
  7. Woodbridge, J., Roberts, C.N. and Fyfe, R.M. (2018) Holocene vegetation and land-cover dynamics in the Mediterranean from pollen data. Journal of Biogeography. 45, 2159-2174.
  8. Woodbridge, J., Fyfe, R.M., Roberts, C.N., Mazier, F. and Davis, B. (2018) European forest cover since the start of Neolithic agriculture: a critical comparison of pollen-based reconstructions. PAGES (Past Global Change) Magazine, doi: https://doi.org/10.22498/pages.26.1.10
  9. Fyfe, R.M., Woodbridge, J. and Roberts, C.N. (2018) Trajectories of change in Mediterranean Holocene vegetation through classification of pollen data. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany. 27, 351-364.
  10. Roberts, N., Fyfe, R.M., Woodbridge, J., Gaillard, M.J., Davis, B.A.S., Kaplan, J.O., Marquer, L., Mazier, F., Nielsen, A.B., Sugita, S., Trondman, A.K. and Leydet, M. (2018) Europe’s lost forests: a pollen-based synthesis for the last 11,000 years. Scientific Reports. 716, doi:10.1038/s41598-017-18646-7.
  11. Roberts, C.N., Woodbridge, J., Shennan, S., Bevan, A., Palmisano, A. and Asouti, E. (2018) Human responses and non-responses to climatic variations during the Last Glacial-Interglacial transition in the eastern Mediterranean. Quaternary Science Reviews. 184, 47-67.
  12. Ruddiman, W.F. Fuller, D.Q., Kaplan, J.O., Ellis, E.C., Kutzbach5, J.E., Vavrus, S.J., Tzedakis, P.C., Roberts, C.N., Fyfe, R.M., He, F., Lemmen, C. and Woodbridge, J. (2016) Late Holocene Climate: Natural or Anthropogenic? Review of Geophysics. 54, 93-118.
  13. Roberts, N., Allcock, S.L., Arnaud, F., Dean, J.R., Eastwood, W.J., Jones, M.D., Malet, E., Woodbridge, J. and Yiğitbaşıoğlu, H. (2016) A tale of two lakes: a multi-proxy comparison of Late Glacial and Holocene environmental change in Cappadocia, Turkey. Journal of Quaternary Science. 31, 348-362.
  14. Fyfe, R.M., Woodbridge, J. and Roberts, N. (2015) From forest to farmland: pollen-inferred land cover change across Europe using the pseudobiomization approach. Global Change Biology. 21, 1197-212.
  15. Woodbridge, J., Davies, H., Blake, W. and Fyfe, R.M. (2014) Exploring recent environmental change in an upland catchment using evidence from reservoir sediments. Journal of Paleolimnology. 52, 229-244.
  16. Woodbridge, J., Fyfe, R.M. and Roberts, N. (2014) A comparison of remote-sensed and pollen-based approaches to mapping Europe’s land cover. Journal of Biogeography. 41, 2080-2092.
  17. Woodbridge, J., Fyfe, R.M., Roberts, N., Downey, S., Edinborough, K., and Shennan, S. (2014) The impact of the Neolithic agricultural transition in Britain: a comparison of pollen-based land-cover and archaeological 14C date-inferred population change. Journal of Archaeological Science. 51, 216-224.
  18. Dean, J.R., Eastwood, W.J., Roberts, N., Jones, M.D., Yiğitbaşıoğlu, H., Allcock, S.L., Woodbridge, J. and Leng, M.J. (2014). Tracking the hydroclimatic signal from lake to sediment: a field study from central Turkey. Journal of Hydrobiologia. 529, 608-621.
  19. Davis B.A.S, Zanon M, Collins P, Mauri A, Fyfe R, Woodbridge J., Kaplan J.O., et al. (2013) The European Modern Pollen Database (EMPD) project. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany. 22,521-530.
  20. Dean, J.R., Jones, M.D., Leng, M.J., Sloane, H.J., Roberts, C.N., Woodbridge, J., Swann, G.E.A., Metcalfe, S.E., Eastwood, W.J., Yigitbas, H., and Yigitbasıoglu, H. (2013) Palaeo-seasonality of the last two millennia reconstructed from the oxygen isotope composition of carbonates and diatom silica from Nar Gölü, central Turkey. Quaternary Science Reviews. 66, 35-44.
  21. Fyfe, R.M. and Woodbridge, J. (2012) Differences in time and space in vegetation patterning: analysis of pollen data from Dartmoor, UK. Landscape Ecology. 27, 745-760.
  22. Roberts, N., Moreno, A., Valero-Garcés, B.L., Corella, J.P., Jones, M., Allcock, S., Woodbridge, J., Morellón, M., Luterbacher, J., Xoplaki, E. and Türkeş, M. (2012) Palaeolimnological evidence for an east–west climate see-saw in the Mediterranean since AD 900. Global & Planetary Change, Special Issue, the Medieval Climate Anomaly. 84-85, 23-34.
  23. Woodbridge, J., Fyfe, R.M., Law, B. and Hayworth-Johns, A. (2012) A spatial approach to upland vegetation change and human impact: Aber Valley, Snowdonia. Environmental Archaeology. 17, 80-94.
  24. Woodbridge, J. and Roberts, N. (2011) Late Holocene climate of the Eastern Mediterranean inferred from diatom analysis of annually-laminated lake sediments. Quaternary Science Reviews. 30, 3381-3392.
  25. Fyfe, R.M., Roberts, N., and Woodbridge, J. (2010) A pseudo-biomisation approach to anthropogenic land cover change. Holocene. 20, 1165-1171.
  26. Woodbridge, J. and Roberts, N. (2010) Linking neo and palaeolimnology: a case study using crater lake diatoms from central Turkey.  Journal of Palaeolimnology. 44, 855-871.
  27. Woodbridge, J., Roberts, N. and Cox, E.J. (2010) Morphology and ecology of a new centric diatom from Cappadocia (central Turkey). Diatom Research. 25, 195-212.

Journal articles in review / preparation:

  1. Woodbridge, J. Dougal, M. and Paling, N. (in prep. Freshwater Biology) Monitoring and managing river water quality using diatom analysis (Southwest England).
  2. Connor, S., Vannière, B., Colombaroli, D., Woodbridge, J. and Roberts, N. (accepted subject to revisions: The Holocene) Mediterranean fire history land-cover diversity change during the Holocene.
  3. Langgut, D., Cheddadi, R., Woodbridge, J., Mercuri, A.-M., Greenberg, R. and Eastwood, W. (accepted subject to revisions: The Holocene) The Olive: a history of a keystone Mediterranean tree crop.
  4. Walsh, K., Estreny, J., Berger, J.-F., Roberts, N., Woodbridge, J., Vannière, B., Ghilardi, M. and Brown, A. (accepted subject to revisions: The Holocene) Mediterranean erosion history: an overview.
  5. Finné, M., Labuhn, I., Roberts, N. and Woodbridge, J. (accepted subject to revisions: The Holocene) Holocene climate of the Mediterranean: a synthesis.
  6. Berger, J.-F., Woodbridge, J., Palmisano, A., Shennan, S., Walsh, K., Mazier, F., Nuninger, L., Andrieu-Ponel, V., Azuara, J., Bevan, A., Fyfe, R. and Roberts, N. (accepted subject to revisions: The Holocene) Mediterranean France: regional land cover, vegetation and settlement.
  7. Cheddadi, R., Roberts, N, Fyfe, R., Shennan, S., Bevan, A., Woodbridge, J. Palmisano, A., Reddad, H. and Fletcher, W. (accepted subject to revisions: The Holocene) Morocco, regional land cover, vegetation, climate and settlement.
  8. Stoddart, S., Woodbridge, J., Palmisano, A., Mercuri, A.-M., Mensing, S., Colombaroli, D., Sadori, L., Magri, D., di Rita, F., Giardini, M., Marioti, M.,  Florenzano, A., Torri, P., Bevan, A., Shennan, S., Fyfe, R. and Roberts, N. (in review. The Holocene) "Etruria", central Italy: regional land cover, vegetation and settlement.
  9. Roberts, N, Fyfe, R., Shennan, S., Bevan, A., Woodbridge, J. and Palmisano, A. (in review. The Holocene) The changing face of the Mediterranean: inter-regional comparisons.

Book chapters

  1. Fyfe, R.M., Bray, L., Juleff, G., Woodbridge, J. and Marshall, P. (2013) The environmental impact of Romano-British ironworking on Exmoor.  In: Humphries J and Rehren T (eds) The World of Iron. Archetype Publications, London, 462-472.


  1. Woodbridge, J. (2014) Trophic Diatom Index of Southwest Rivers. Report to Westcountry Rivers Trust.
  2. Fyfe, R.M., Head, K., Hazell, Z. and Woodbridge, J. (2012) Palaeoecological analyses, Pen-y-Gwryd, Snowdonia. Report for Snowdonia National Park Authority.
  3. Fyfe, R.M., Woodbridge, J. and Rowe, J. (2010) Archaeological and palaeoecological survey at Hangingstone Hill, Winney’s Down and Broad Down, Dartmoor. Report for Dartmoor National Park Authority.

Research networks

LandCover6K PAGES Working Group


I have been an Associate Lecturer for several years teaching across a wide range of core subjects in Physical Geography. I am particularly interested in teaching related to human-environment interactions and environmental change. 


I currently teach on the following modules:

Stage 1:

GEO1311: Study Skills for Physical Geographers

GEO1315: Research Methods for Geographers

Stage 2:

GEO2320: Applied GIS for Physical Geographers

GEO2330: Research Methods for Physical Geography

GEO2331: Research Design in Physical Geography

GEO2307: Iceland fieldtrip

Stage 3:

GEO3321: BSc Dissertation

Supervision / Group

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