Advancing the utility of palynology: Scope, breadth and novelty of approaches

Webb, Julia C ORCID: 0000-0002-1652-965X (2022) Advancing the utility of palynology: Scope, breadth and novelty of approaches. PhD thesis, University of Gloucestershire. doi:10.46289/CC1483TE

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12264 Webb, Julia (2022) Advancing the utility of palynology - scope, breadth and novelty approaches.pdf - Accepted Version
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Palynology – the study of pollen and spores – is a multi-disciplinary tool. It has been utilised for many years in: (1) traditional palaeoecology for reconstructing Quaternary and deep-time vegetation communities; (2) within archaeology to trace cultural and agricultural developments; (3) in contemporary ecology to inform management and conservation; (4) in studies of pollination biology and pollen dispersal; and (5) as a tool to determine the location or provenance of items and animals, including in forensic settings. In this thesis, ten published* papers are presented for a retrospective PhD by publication, all of which advance the utility of palynology in different ways. After a general introductory chapter, these ten papers are grouped into four chapters thematically. Firstly, two papers are presented that focus on local scale vegetation reconstructions over the last three millennia. These papers provide information on vegetation history that informs both ongoing archaeological research and contemporary ecological management. Secondly, and moving to a wider spatial scale, two papers are presented where multi-site palaeoecological data are mined to reconstruct the impacts of past global climate perturbations (c.600 and 8,200 years ago). These papers demonstrate the importance of the use of palaeoecology for predicting and managing vegetational responses to human-accelerated climate change events of a similar magnitude. Thirdly, to advance the use of palynology to inform contemporary ecology, an overarching review paper is presented on the range of ways that palaeoecology can benefit applied neoecology (including non-native management, in-situ conservation, reintroduction and rewilding). This is then followed by two papers that use palaeoecological data to test general ecological theory. The final group of papers demonstrates the application of palynology in tracing the location and provenance of subjects within forensic settings and ecological contexts. This thesis thus showcases the considerable scope and breadth of palynology as a research tool and highlights novel ways that it has been applied by the candidate to make important contributions to the fields of palaeoecology, archaeology, contemporary ecology and forensics.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Advisors:
Thesis AdvisorEmailURL
Additional Information: Thesis by publication
Uncontrolled Keywords: Palynology; Ecology
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Education and Science
Depositing User: Susan Turner
Date Deposited: 18 Jan 2023 11:18
Last Modified: 12 Mar 2024 09:25

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