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Sophie Brown (2010)

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Dissertation titled “Using web-based media for assessing the physical nature of landslide hazard and impact on a global scale”. Her novel project used Google alerts to generate data on the frequency and location of search terms related to landslides. From these data she was able to provide global information on spatial and temporal landslide trends as well as patterns of landslide type and trigger mechanism. This data was then compared to that held by the Durham hazards centre. The judges commented “The work is non-traditional, though clearly required extensive data collection and analysis and is very novel”; “Written exceptionally well, demonstrates a very high level of understanding of all aspects of the study”; “Landslide analysis with a difference – and done well”; “not typical geomorphology, but a great dissertation”; “like many good projects based on a relatively simple but very effective idea – why didn’t I think of that?”.

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