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Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre Southampton
(023) 8059 3640

Professor Lisa McNeill MA, PhD

Professor of Tectonics, Head of Geology and Geophysics Research Group

Professor Lisa McNeill's photo

Professor Lisa McNeill is Professor of Tectonics within Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre Southampton at the University of Southampton.

MA (Hons) Natural Sciences, University of Cambridge, 1992
PhD Oregon State University, USA, 1998
Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Fellow, University of Leeds (1999-2000)
Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Fellow, University of Southampton (2000-2002)
Lecturer, University of Southampton (2003-2008)
Senior Lecturer, University of Southampton (2008-2014)
Professor, University of Southampton (2014-present)

Research interests

Specialisms: Active tectonics, geohazards, marine geophysics, subduction zones, active rifting

My primary current research interests are the active tectonics of subduction zones and continental rifts, and their associated geological hazards. Specifically I’m interested in how these active regions evolve tectonically, the interactions between tectonics, sedimentation and environment, and fault slip behaviour and history. My research involves a range of methodologies, from marine geophysics, sediment coring and ocean drilling offshore to geomorphology and paleoseismology onshore.

Subduction zone research includes: the evolution and structure of the subduction forearc; the relationship between structure, fault properties, earthquake behaviour and tsunami generation; and the role of sedimentary inputs on fault slip behaviour and sediment flux within subduction zones. Current studies are on the Sumatra (Indonesia), Hikurangi (New Zealand), Cascadia (USA-Canada), Nankai (Japan), and Makran (Pakistan-Iran) subduction zones.

Active continental rift studies are focused on the Gulf of Corinth, Greece, one of the fastest extending regions on Earth, with comparisons to the volcanic East African Rift. In the Corinth Rift, onshore and offshore data have been compiled to determine the evolution of this young rift system at ultra-high resolution, the slip rates of major earthquake generating faults, and the analyzing how interactions between rift tectonics, climate and sea level control sediment fluxes, surface processes and basin environment.

I have had extensive involvement with the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP). Related to subduction zone research, I have co-led as Co-Chief Scientist a drilling expedition to explore the role of the input sediments on fault slip and earthquake behaviour at the Sumatra subduction zone (IODP Expedition 362, 2016) and was one of the Co-Chief Scientists for the major NanTroSEIZE drilling project investigating fault properties and seiemogenic behaviour on the Nankai margin, SW Japan (IODP Expedition 319, 2009). I was also Co-Chief Scientist for IODP Expedition 381 which drilled the syn-rift sediments of the Corinth Rift to investigate its evolution and environment at high resolution (2017-18).

External research projects

Integrated Ocean Drilling Program

Research group

Geology and Geophysics

Research project(s)

Sumatran Earthquake Segment Boundaries Consortium

Controls on Megathrust Earthquake Segmentation

Mapping physical properties using reflection coefficients, a global approach

Segmentation, fault structure and tsunamigenesis of the Sumatran Subduction Zone

Structure, fluid flow and earthquake potential of the Makran Subduction Zone, Pakistan

Active-source seismic refraction across the Sumatra subduction zone

RiftVolc - Rift Volcanism: Past, Present and Future

Co-Chair of the Integrated Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Science Evaluation Panel (SEP)
Member of the UKIODP Programme Advisory Group (PAG)

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Key Publications






Primary current teaching roles:

  • SOES1002 Dynamic Earth (Module Coordinator)
  • SOES3002 Petroleum Geology and Mineral Resources
  • SOES6016 Introduction to Marine Geology (Module Coordinator)
  • SOES6064 Barrel Award (Module Coordinator)
Professor Lisa McNeill
Ocean and Earth Science
National Oceanography Centre Southampton
University of Southampton Waterfront Campus
European Way
Southampton SO14 3ZH

Room Number : NOCS/786/05

Facsimile: (023) 8059 3059

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