Academic Profile : Faculty

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Assoc Prof Emma Mary Hill
Acting Chair, Asian School of the Environment (ASE)
Provost’s Chair in Earth Sciences
Associate Professor, Asian School of the Environment
External Links
Dr. Emma Hill is an Associate Professor at the Asian School of the Environment (ASE) and Director of Research and Strategy for the Earth Observatory of Singapore (EOS), Nanyang Technological University. She also holds the position of Provost's Chair in Earth Sciences at NTU. Prior to joining NTU in 2010, Emma was a Postdoctoral Fellow and then Research Geodesist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, USA. She obtained her Ph.D. in Geophysics (2005) from the University of Nevada, Reno, USA, and her B.Sc. in Surveying and Mapping Sciences (1999) from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK. Emma was awarded a Singapore NRF Fellowship in 2011, the American Geophysical Union Geodesy Award in 2016, and a Singapore NRF Investigatorship in 2019.

Emma's research focuses on studying natural hazards and sea-level change in Southeast Asia, using space geodesy and numerical modelling. Much of her recent research has focused on understanding the tectonic behaviour of the Sumatran subduction zone, which has generated a host of great earthquakes in the last 15 years, using data from continuous Global Positioning System (GPS) stations. Her team are now using GPS to study many aspects of the earth system -- positioning for studying crustal deformation, estimates of tropospheric water to study monsoon patterns, estimates of ionospheric electron density to study “ionospheric tsunami” resulting from earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, and using reflections of the GPS signal off the ocean to study sea-level change. Emma’s group are also using Synthetic Aperture Radar data to monitor crustal deformation, floods, and building damage from disasters such as earthquakes. They are investigating the use of machine-learning techniques to improve the algorithms for SAR-based disaster mapping.

In leadership, Emma is currently Acting Chair for the Asian School of the Environment. She was previously Director of Research and Strategy for EOS, and Associate Chair for Research and Graduate Education for ASE. She has served on the NTU 2025 Strategic Planning Task Force, the NTU Graduate College Executive Committee and the Research Integrity Committee, among others. She is a graduate of the NTU Leadership Academy, and holds a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from the University of Chicago, Illinois, USA. She is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Geophysical Research (Solid Earth). Past community service has including serving as a member of the Council of the American Geophysical Union (AGU), and a member of the AGU Strategic Planning Task Force.
Geodesy, SAR, GPS, tide gauges, satellite gravity, natural hazards, earthquakes, sea level, natural disasters, tectonics, machine learning
  • Driving Mechanisms of Past and Present Sea-Level Change to Quantify Projection Uncertainties
  • Monitoring and Forecasting of Land-Height Change, Coastline Retreat and Coastal Flooding around Southeast Asia using Geodesy and Remote Sensing
  • Provost's Chair in Earth Sciences
  • Southeast Asia SEA-Level Program (SEA2)
  • Space-borne geodesy and remote sensing for understanding natural hazards, sea-level change and disaster response in Asia
  • Supplementary Funding for NRF Investigatorship: Space-borne geodesy and remote sensing for understanding natural hazards, sea-level change and disaster response in Asia
  • Understanding cascading earthquake ruptures on orthogonal faults
American Geophysical Union Geodesy Section Award (2016)
Fellowships & Other Recognition
NRF Fellow (2011)
NRF Investigator (2019)