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Erika Lentz, PhD

I lead research at USGS within the Coastal and Marine Hazards and Resources Program focused on coastal change— including understanding the forces and processes that drive it, developing innovative methods to determine where and when it is likely to occur, and working closely with intended users to ensure the scientific information we produce is meaningful, actionable, and accessible. 

I am a Research Geologist at the Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center with the U.S. Geological Survey. My research focuses on coastal change and the processes that drive it over a range of spatial (barrier island to regional) and temporal (storms to sea level rise) scales in both natural and built environments. More recently, I have been exploring how coastal change varies among different ecosystems and across landscapes, what makes certain locations more resilient than others, and where coastal change is most likely to occur in the future. I am also interested in the communication of scientific information to support decision-making and use design thinking and transdisciplinary approaches to deeply consider user needs in the development of products and tools, as well as to foster creativity and innovation in research teams. Since 2017, I have led multidisciplinary project teams to explore these themes as both Principal Investigator and task leader.