Katherine Lininger photo portrait
Assistant Professor of Geography • fluvial geomorphology; ecogeomorphology; carbon cycle; water resources management; coupled natural-human systems • PhD in Earth Sciences, Colorado State University
Physical Geography




Research Interests

Rivers integrate the landscape, carrying and depositing water, sediment, large wood, carbon, and nutrients. My research is focused on river and floodplain dynamics and the interactions between geomorphic processes and ecological processes. I am particularly interested in the influence of river and floodplain processes on the flux and storage of organic carbon in floodplain soil and large wood; interactions between downed large wood, vegetation, and geomorphic processes; river and floodplain dynamics in the Sub-Arctic and Arctic; and coupled natural-human systems research related to rivers. Much of my research has been focused on large floodplain rivers, and I incorporate fieldwork, statistical modeling, and remote sensing methods into my work.

Recent Courses Taught

  • Fall 2023  GEOG/GEOL 4241  Principles of Geomorphology
  • Fall 2023  GEOG 5241  Topics/Physical Geography: Fluvial Geomorphology
  • Fall 2022  GEOG/GEOL 4241  Principles of Geomorphology
  • Fall 2022  GEOG 5241  Topics/Physical Geography: Fluvial Geomorphology
  • Fall 2021  GEOG 1011  Environmental Systems: Landscapes and Water
  • Fall 2021  GEOG/GEOL 4241  Principles of Geomorphology
  • Spring 2021  GEOG 1011  Environmental Systems: Landscapes and Water
  • Spring 2020  GEOG 1011  Environmental Systems: Landscapes and Water
  • Spring 2020  GEOG 5241  Topics/Physical Geography: Fluvial Geomorphology
  • Fall 2019  GEOG/GEOL 4241  Principles of Geomorphology
  • Spring 2019  GEOG 5241  Topics/Physical Geography: Ecogeomorphology in Rivers

Recent Publications

Lininger, K. B., Scamardo, J., and *Guiney, M. (2021). Floodplain wood and organic matter jam formation after a large flood: investigating the influence of floodplain forest stand characteristics and river corridor morphology. Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface, https://doi.org/10.1029/2020JF006011.

Wohl, E., & Lininger, K. B. (2021). High-Latitude Rivers and Permafrost. In Reference Module in Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences (p. B9780128182345000000). Elsevier. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-818234-5.00074-2

Lininger, K. B., & Polvi, L. E. (2020). Evaluating floodplain organic carbon across a gradient of human alteration in the boreal zone. Geomorphology370, 107390. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geomorph.2020.107390

Livers, B., Lininger, K. B., Kramer, N., & Sendrowski, A. (2020). Porosity problems: Comparing and reviewing methods for estimating porosity and volume of wood jams in the field. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms45(13), 3336–3353. https://doi.org/10.1002/esp.4969

Wohl, E., Lininger, K. B., Rathburn, S. L., & Sutfin, N. A. (2020). How geomorphic context governs the influence of wildfire on floodplain organic carbon in fire‐prone environments of the western United States. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms45(1), 38-55. https://doi.org/10.1002/esp.4680

Lininger, K. B., Raimondi, J., Kramer, N., Homrighausen, D., & Covich, A. (2019). Comparison of discharge pulses in temperate and tropical rainforest headwater stream networks. Journal of Hydrology579, 124236. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2019.124236

Wohl, E., Kramer, N., Ruiz-Villanueva, V., Scott, D. N., Comiti, F., Gurnell, A. M., Piegay, H., Lininger, K. B., Jaeger, K. L., Walters, D. M., Fausch, K. D. et al. (2019). The Natural Wood Regime in Rivers. BioScience69(4), 259–273. https://doi.org/10.1093/biosci/biz013

Lininger, K. B., Wohl, E., Rose, J. R., & Leisz, S. J. (2019). Significant floodplain soil organic carbon storage along a large high latitude river and its tributaries. Geophysical Research Letters46, 2121–2129. https://doi.org/10.1029/2018GL080996

Lininger, K. B., & Wohl, E. (2019). Floodplain dynamics in North American permafrost regions under a warming climate and implications for organic carbon stocks: A review and synthesis. Earth-Science Reviewshttps://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2019.02.024

Lininger, K. B., Wohl, E., & Rose, J. R. (2018). Geomorphic Controls on Floodplain Soil Organic Carbon in the Yukon Flats, Interior Alaska, From Reach to River Basin Scales. Water Resources Research, (54), 1934–1951. https://doi.org/10.1002/2017WR022042

Updated May 2021