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Alexandra Gormally supervises 3 postgraduate research students. If these students have produced research profiles, these are listed below:

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Dr Alexandra Gormally

Lecturer in Subsurface and Society

Alexandra Gormally

LEC Building



Tel: +44 1524 594376

Current Research

Ally holds a lectureship in Society and The Subsurface, which is a collaborative position between the Lancaster Environment Centre (LEC) and the British Geological Survey (BGS).  Building on themes of energy, climate and communities, Ally is utilising her environmental  geography background to take a critical perspective exploring societal interactions with the subsurface. Ally's research is broadly on themes of knowledge, society and governance.


Ally has a background in energy research and takes an interdisciplinary approach in looking at the challenges and opportunities around low carbon transitions.  Ally’s doctoral research was funded by a competitively won studentship from the UK Energy Research Centre and took an interdisciplinary approach to assessing renewable energy potential in upland communities. This research looked at both the physical and societal dimensions of community-based renewables, using a mixture of spatial (GIS), quantitative and qualitative methods. Ally has also been involved in research with Energy Lancaster , looking at patterns of energy supply and demand with a focus on energy practices.

Published Research:

Ally has published in a number of interdisciplinary journals on themes of community energy including renewable resources, the role of institutional support and community ownership structures.

Current Teaching

Ally mainly teaches on LEC's UG Geography programme and convenes modules on  LEC 227 'Geosocial Spaces' which explores society's relationship with earth processes and LEC 304 'Geography Joint Honours - Extended Essay' module. Ally also contributes to LEC210a 'Geographical Pioneers and Concepts; Qualitative stream' and LEC 101 'Global Environmental Challenges'.

In addition to this, Ally has a number of both UG and PG dissertation students exploring topics such as the use of subterreanean spaces in cities, the viability of shale gas in Lancashire, Governace of groundwater in the UK, the Value of geology in settlement patterns and Community Energy, amonst others. 

PhD Students:

Ally has a number of PhD students funded through the Centre for Global and Eco-Innovation:

  • Kathy New, looking at adaptive thermal comfort in non-domestic building
  • Mike Lusty, looking at the role of citizen science in coastal management
  • Caitlin Thompson, looking at micro-hydro in rural Kenya

As of Oct 2018, Ally will have two new PhD students:

  • Jack Hemingway, exploring the Resilience of Groundwater Governance in Malawi. This is in collaboration with BGS and funded through the ESRC NWSSDTP.
  • Lydia Parsons, exploring Subterranean Spaces; Critical Approaches to Underground Urban Development. Funded through a Faculty of Sceince and Technology Studentship award.

My Role

Ally is Deputy Addmissions tutor for LEC's UG Geography Programme. For more details of LEC's programmes please see here, and details of how to visit us in LEC can be found here.

Research Grants

  • FST Research Grant (£2.5k) 'Scoping Project - Energy from Magma; The Re-Imagination of Subsurface Opportunities' Jan-July 2018
  • LEC-BGS 'Society and Subsurface' collaboration 2016-2019

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