From climate change to inequality - working on the world's biggest problems today

Welcome to the School of Geography and Environment, a vibrant community of agenda-setting researchers, teachers, students and professional services staff.

We are one of the foremost geography and environment university departments in the world, internationally recognised for the quality of our research and our teaching. Geography at the University of Oxford is a large, vibrant and intellectually diverse community comprising the core academic department of the School of Geography and the Environment, its three research centres: the Environmental Change Institute (ECI), the Transport Studies Unit (TSU) and the Smith School of Enterprise and Environment (SSEE) and several geographers based elsewhere in the wider university.

We craft robust, imaginative and forward-looking answers to pressing questions about the environment, technology, geopolitics and socio-economic change.

This subject is the intersection of everything. So many disciplines and pressing issues come together in one place.

DPhil student, 2022
Image: Tom / Adobe Stock

The Dune films remind us of just how beautiful, mysterious, expansive and changeable sand dunes can be. For centuries these wonderful landforms have filled humans with awe – and in some cases fear and foreboding – because of the apparent remoteness and risks associated with the deserts they are synonymous with. That's what first attracted Professor David Thomas to research deserts and dunes more than 40 years ago, and he has been investigating them ever since. In an article for The Conversation, Prof. Thomas shares five things he has learned that may surprise you about dunes.