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Personal profile


As of August 2016 I am a Lecturer in Environmental Sciences, teaching on the range of Environmental Sciences and Geography degree programmes. I organise the first year Research & Field Skills module, co-teach on GIS Skills For Project Work, and supervise a range of independent projects and dissertations in GIS and social science. I am also Course Director for the Environmental Sciences degrees (BSc, MSci, Year Abroad, Year in Industry).

I am a supervisory panel member for PhD student Jacqueline Zavala (visualisation for decision-making in coastal futures). I co-supervised Sarah Taigel (2016 PhD: Utilising Spatial Technology To Support The Catchment Based Approach To Landscape Management), and also worked closely with Nick Bearman (2013 PhD: Using Sound To Represent Uncertainty In Spatial Data).

I have previously been involved in various projects using visualisation to present future landscape scenarios to stakeholders and other audiences, including the RELU Biomass project, funded by ESRC and NERC, and the EU-funded RUFUS project which is working towards policy integration for rural multifunctionality. My PhD examined some general aspects of the use of computerised landscape imagery, based on GIS data, in environmental management applications, and in particular the issues surrounding levels of realism within such images.

Since 2003 I have been the Research Officer for the SSEVREL virtual reality facility within the School, and I also have responsibility for supporting GIS use for research and teaching.

PhD Positions

Click here for current PhD opportunities in the School of Environmental Sciences. However, feel free to email me to discuss projects outside these areas and alternative sources of funding.


Additional Contacts

Twitter @KatyAppletonUEA

Key Research Interests

GIS-based landscape visualisation, particularly for communication and participation purposes relating to environmental management and decision-making; perceptions of different visualisation content and presentation methods; multifunctional landscapes and assessing the landscape services they provide, particularly via GIS methods.

Significant Publications

  • Bearman, N., Appleton, K. (2012). Using Google Maps to collect spatial responses in a survey environment. Area. Early view. doi: 10.1111/j.1475-4762.2012.01081.x
  • Appleton, K.J, A.A.Lovett, G.Sünnenberg, T.L.Dockerty (2002). Visualising Rural Landscapes From GIS Databases: a comparison of approaches, options and problems. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 26, 141-162, doi:10.1016/S0198-9715(01)00041-2.
  • Appleton, K.J, A.A.Lovett (2003). GIS-based visualisation of rural landscapes: defining 'sufficient' realism for environmental decision-making. Landscape & Urban Planning, 65, 117-131, doi:10.1016/S0169-2046(02)00245-1.
  • Appleton, K.J, A.A.Lovett (2005). Display methods for real-time landscape models – an initial comparison. E.Buhmann, P.Paar, I.Bishop, E.Lange (eds.) Trends in Real-Time Landscape Visualisation and Participation, Wichmann, Heidelberg. 246-253.
  • Appleton, K.J., A.A.Lovett (2005). GIS-based visualisation of development proposals: reactions from planning and related professionals. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 29, 321-339,doi:10.1016/j.compenvurbsys.2004.05.005.
  • Dockerty, T.L, A. A.Lovett, G.Sünnenberg, K.J.Appleton, M.Parry (2005). Visualising the potential impacts of climate change on rural landscapes. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 29, 297-320, doi:10.1016/j.compenvurbsys.2004.05.004.
  • Dockerty, T.L, A.A.Lovett, K.J.Appleton, A.E.Bone, G.Sünnenberg (2006). Developing scenarios and visualisations to illustrate potential policy and climatic influences on future agricultural landscapes.Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment, 114, 103-120, doi:10.1016/j.agee.2005.11.008.

Publications: EPrints Digital Repository

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 13 - Climate Action