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Resources and Research Network
The Unit is housed in the Hardy building, an annex to the Department of Geography, where desk space is provided for research students and visiting scholars working on coastal projects. There is a small library and resource room, with extensive holdings of maps of the UK coastline and limited coverage of other countries. The offices have a network of IBM-PC computers, with standard office software packages, and links to Cambridge University, International databases and electronic services. The Unit supports environmental mapping and modelling software. Remote sensing and G.I.S facilities are available in the Department of Geography.
The Unit has access to a wide range of equipment for field survey and monitoring (electronic 'Total Stations', GPS, echo-sounding equipment; automatic water samplers; flow, water level and turbidity sensors, programmable dataloggers and field portable IBM-compatible PCs). The Unit maintains two powered, rigid-hull boats on the North Norfolk coast. It has access to three departmental vehicles and a 4WD for fieldwork. Equipment fabrication in the Department's Workshop and equipment installation is supported by the Department's Technical Officer and two Technicians.
In Cambridge, the Unit has links to research workers with coastal interests in other Departments, to the University's Unit for Landscape Modelling; to the Cambridge University Centre for Risk in the Built Environment (CURBE); and to the Cambridge Environmental Initiative (CEI).
The Department of Geography has been closely involved with other institutions in the University and with external organisations (such as the British Antarctic Survey, the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH) and the World Conservation Monitoring Centre) in establishing the University Cambridge Environmental Initiative (CEI), whose aim is to advance environmental education and to address environmental problems and their possible solutions by linking the resources of the humanities and the social sciences to those of the natural sciences, medicine and technology.
Outside Cambridge, we have UK research partnerships with the Environmental Information Centre at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH), Monk's Wood, the Department of Geography, University College London, the Jackson Environment Institute, University of East Anglia and HR Wallingford. The Unit is also involved in the scientific planning stages of the RGS-IBG/Royal Society 'Shoals of Capricorn' Programme 1997/2001, a major inter-disciplinary research project in the western Indian Ocean.
Within Europe we have an established collaboration with Universita di Ferrara (Italy), Station Biologique La Tour du Valat (France), SEO Birdlife (Spain), CIIRC-LIM/UPC (Spain), Universitat de Barcelona (Spain), the University of Granada (Spain) and the Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research Utrecht (Utrecht University, NL).
Further a field, we have research partnerships with Louisiana State University Coastal Studies Institute (USA); University of New Orleans; US Geological Survey National Wetlands Research Center; and the California University of Pennsylvania.