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I am a Professor of Earth & Climate Science at the University of Southampton and a Fellow of the Turing Institute, the United Kingdom’s national institute for data science and artifical intelligence. My research explores the major controls on Earth surface conditions over geologic time. This includes the effects of tectonic, volcanic, sedimentary, and metamorphic processes; their interactions, and how these shape Earth's climate state over different timescales. I established the Earth Intelligence Laboratory (EILAB) to exploit the untapped potential of novel, interdisciplinary, and data-driven approaches in the Earth and environmental sciences. EILAB tackles big, challenging questions about the evolution of the Earth surface, atmosphere, oceans, cryosphere, and biosphere over the history of our planet. We also use data-driven approaches to find innovative solutions to the complex challenges facing society today.  



More information about selected active research projects


See the locations we work on across the globe


Get in touch to find out more about our exciting research and opportunities


Current and former PhDs and Postdocs in my Group


Active international collaborations


A selection of news stories featuring the Gernon Lab

Anchor 1


Over the past twelve years, I have supervised 16 PhD students (thirteen to completion and three in progress), six of these as lead supervisor, and 3 PDRAs. Over the same period, I have supervised over 20 MSci research projects, with approximately half of these leading to high-quality publications in leading international journals (for example, Nature, Nature Geoscience, Geology and Geophysical Research Letters).

Current Ph.D. students:

Rhiannon Rees-2.jpg_SIA_JPG_fit_to_width

Rhiannon Rees

Volcanology & geochemistry


Emma Watts

Volcanology & geochemistry


Jessica Rawlings
Kimberlite geochemistry

Postdoctoral Researchers:


Dr Thea Hincks

Machine learning


Dr Jack Longman

Global geochemical cycles


Dr Hayley Manners

Organic geochemistry

  • Dr Thea Hincks is currently working on NERC project, Environmental tipping points during supercontinent breakup (Gernon PI, NE/R004978/1), and the Turing Institute project, Machine learning of seismicity induced by hydraulic fracturing (Gernon PI).

  • Dr Hayley Manners (now a Lecturer at Plymouth University) worked on NERC project, The role of marine diagenesis of tephra in the carbon cycle (Gernon Co-I, NE/K00543X/1)

  • Dr Jack Longman (now at the Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg) worked on NERC project, The role of marine diagenesis of tephra in the carbon cycle (Gernon Co-I, NE/K00543X/1)

Completed Ph.D. students:

Contact the lab to find out about current opportunities

  • Dr Holly Elliott, 2011-2015 (now Lecturer of Economic Geology at the University of Derby)

  • Dr Melanie Siegburg, 2015-2019 (now a geologist with the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources, Germany)

  • Dr Stuart Hatter, 2013-2017 (Research Fellow at Montserrat Volcano Observatory, and now a geologist at Badley Ashton)

  • Dr Finnigan Illsley-Kemp, 2015-2018 (now Postdoctoral Fellow in Volcano Geodynamics, Victoria University of Wellington)

  • Dr Tim Hughes, 2012-2016 (now Software Engineer, Riskaware)

  • Dr John Emeana, 2012-2016 (now Director, Crown Analytics Ltd)

  • Dr Maya Coussens, 2012-2016 (now Logistics Coordinator)

  • Dr Michael Clare, 2012-2016 (now Marine Geoscientist, NOCS)

  • Dr Melis Cevatoglu, 2011-2015 (now a Senior Geophysicist)

  • Dr James Davey, 2015-2019 (now a consultant at SRK)

  • Dr Ben Callow, 2016-2020 (now Postdoctoral Researcher at Ghent University)

  • Dr Emma Horn, 2019-2023 (now Postdoctoral Researcher at University of Oxford)


Anchor 2

I have carried out extensive geological fieldwork in sixteen countries over six continents, and cumulatively spent over two years in the field collecting data. Click on the green symbols above to see some of the results of this work, and see my CV for a more comprehensive list of field locations.


Anchor 3
  • Neoproterozoic glacial origin of the Great Unconformity (Dr Brenhin Keller, USA).

  • Snowball Earth and the geology of Cryogenian glaciations (Prof Paul Hoffman, Harvard).

  • Orbital forcing on Snowball Earth (Dr Ross Mitchell, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing).

  • Environmental tipping points during supercontinent breakup (Prof Dietmar Müller, University of Sydney & Dr Andrew Merdith, Université Lyon).

  • Drivers of global riverine suspended sediment fluxes in a warming world (Dr Julian Leyland and Steve Darby, Thea Hincks, Southampton).

  • Earth and Moon impact flux over geologic time (Dr Bill Bottke, Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), USA).

  • Tectonic forcing of global chemical weathering in the Phanerozoic (Prof Eelco Rohling, ANU Canberra).

  • Bayesian Networks and Model Learning for seismicity and climate applications (Prof Roger Cooke, Resources for the Future, Washington DC), with Dr Thea Hincks and Prof Willy Aspinall.

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