J.P. Walsh

  • GSO Professor
  • Phone: 401-874-6233
  • Email: jpwalsh@uri.edu
  • Office Location: 107 Horn Building
    Narragansett Bay Campus
    Narragansett, RI 02882


J.P. Walsh is a professor of oceanography and a geological oceanographer with a doctorate in oceanography from the University of Washington, a master of science in marine environmental science from Stony Brook University, and a bachelor’s degree in geology from Colgate University. He served as the CRC Director for >6 years and continues to collaborate with many CRC staff. Before joining GSO, he was a professor at East Carolina University and program head for coastal processes at the Coastal Studies Institute. His research focuses on coastal sedimentary processes and related aspects, such as coastal erosion, pollutant fate and sand resources for beach nourishment. He uses sediment characteristics, oceanographic measurements, GIS and geophysical methods to understand the processes shaping shorelines and the seafloor.

Over his career, Walsh has conducted research around the world including in the Philippines, France, New Zealand, Antarctica, and around the U.S. He is well known for his research investigating how sediments are eroded, transported and accumulate along coasts and in the ocean. This research is important to understanding geochemical cycling, evaluating ecosystem changes, defining coastal hazards and managing natural resources. He has recently spearheaded efforts to measure microplastics on the shoreline and seabed of Narragansett Bay, and he is working on several projects examining coastal change and resilience in New England.

In 2017, Walsh was a Fulbright Research Scholar at the Université de Bordeaux, where he conducted research in southwest France on coastal changes related to storm events and human activities over the last several decades. In 2023, Walsh served as a Fulbright Specialist in Mauritius and assisted MRU2024 with approaches to advance coastal management,


Coastal processes and hazards; Estuarine, delta, and marsh dynamics; Pollutant fate and history, e.g., microplastics; Continental-margin morphology and sedimentation


Colgate University, B.A. Geology, 1995

Stony Brook University, M.S. Marine Science, 1997

University of Washington, Ph.D. Oceanography, 2001