Sara Benetti


  • Cromore Road, Coleraine Campus

    BT52 1SA Coleraine

    United Kingdom

  • 589 Citations
  • 12 h-Index
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Personal profile

Research Interests

  • Abrupt and long-term climatic change and its effects on sedimentological processes.
  • Marine record of climate change.
  • Marine sediments and geomorphology.
  • Seafloor mapping.
  • Submarine geohazards.

Teaching Interests

Current teaching at Ulster University includes:

BSc - The Hydrosphere; Environmental Change; Coastal and Marine Processes; ES Research Methods and Field School.

MSc - Environmental Management Research Project.

As part of her teaching responsibilities, she is the School’s Study Abroad / exchange coordinator  and is in charge of engaging with new partner universities. Her practice has been highlighted as best practice at University level and she works closely with the University’s International Department to improve the students’ experience and variety of placements abroad.

She has completed her Postgraduate degree in Higher Education practice in 2011 and she is Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (UK) and of the Ulster University Centre for Higher Education Practice


Dr Sara Benetti is a marine geoscientist, with an interest in sedimentary processes and geomorphology. She has gained experience in marine research through her work at the National Oceanography Centre (UK), Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (USA), Bedford Institute of Oceanography (Canada), British Antarctic Survey (UK) and the Advanced Mapping Section at the Marine Institute of Ireland. She works extensively with datasets obtained from marine coring and drilling, multibeam echo-sounder bathymetric and backscatter and sub-bottom data.

She is involved in several Europe-wide research collaborations, funded at European and UK level, with emphasis on the reconstruction of the extent and dynamics of the British-Irish Ice Sheet (BIIS) using geophysical and sedimentological datasets (BRITICE-CHRONO and GLANAM). For this research, she also succeeded in securing funding and acting as chief scientist or co-investigator on ten research cruises on the Irish continental margin, as well as on other collaborative projects.

More recently, she obtained funding from the European Commission for the investigation of the submarine record of volcanic eruptions in the Strait of Sicily in the Mediterranean Sea through the PANTHER project.

Her external activities include:

  • Expert evaluator for European Union FP7 R&D programme “New and renewable sources of energy, Energy efficiency & innovation” (ongoing)
  • Expert reviewer (2011) and vice-chair (since 2013) for the FP7 Marie Curie IEF/IIF/IOF fellowship evaluation panels and vice-chair for H2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship evaluations (ongoing).
  • Member of the E-MARSHAL (IGCP-585) project (Earth’s continental MARgins: aSessing the geoHazard from submarine Landslides) and project S4SLIDE (Significance of Modern and Ancient Submarine Slope LandSLIDEs) (IGCP-640)
  • Reviewer for leading journals in the field: Nature (top 5%; IF 42.351); Cryosphere (top 10%; IF 5.5); Marine Geology (top 20%, IF 2.7); J. Quaternary Science (top 15%, IF 3.4) and Sedimentary Geology (top 25%, IF 1.8).

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  • 4 Similar Profiles
ice sheet Earth & Environmental Sciences
ice stream Earth & Environmental Sciences
trough Earth & Environmental Sciences
Ireland Social Sciences
continental shelf Earth & Environmental Sciences
sediment Earth & Environmental Sciences
shelf break Earth & Environmental Sciences
deglaciation Earth & Environmental Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2007 2019

  • 589 Citations
  • 12 h-Index
  • 26 Article
  • 8 Chapter
  • 3 Commissioned report

Deglaciation chronology of the Donegal Ice Centre, northwest Ireland.

Wilson, P., Ballantyne, C. K., Benetti, S., Small, D., Fabel, D. & Clark, C. D., 11 Jan 2019, In : Journal of Quaternary Science. 34, 1, p. 16-28 13 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
ice stream
ice margin
2 Citations (Scopus)

Early deglaciation of the British-Irish Ice Sheet on the Atlantic shelf northwest of Ireland driven by glacioisostatic depression and high relative sea level

OCofaigh, C., Weilbach, K., Lloyd, J., Benetti, S., Callard, L., Purcell, C., Chiverell, R., Dunlop, P., Saher, M., Livingstone, S., Van Landeghem, K., Moreton, S., Clark, C. & Fabel, D., 15 Mar 2019, 208, p. 76-96 21 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
sea level
ice sheet
1 Citation (Scopus)

A stratigraphic investigation of the Celtic Sea megaridges based on seismic and core data from the Irish-UK sectors

Lockhart, E. A., Scourse, J. D., Praeg, D., Van Landeghem, K. J. J., Mellett, C., Saher, M., Callard, L., Chiverrell, R., Benetti, S., Ó Cofaigh, C. & Clark, C. D., 15 Oct 2018, 198, p. 156-170

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
continental shelf
3 Citations (Scopus)

Extent and retreat history of the Barra Fan Ice Stream offshore western Scotland and northern Ireland during the last glaciation.

Callard, L., Ó Cofaigh, C., Benetti, S., Chiverrell, R., Van Landeghem, K. J. J., Saher, M., Gales, J. A., Small, D., Clark, C. D., Livingstone, S. J., Fabel, D. & Moreton, S. G., 1 Dec 2018, 201, p. 280-302

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
ice stream
Northern Ireland
last glaciation
1 Citation (Scopus)

Processes influencing differences in Arctic and Antarctic trough mouth fan sedimentology

Gales, J. A., Hillenbrand, C-D., Larter, R., Laberg, J. S., Melles, M., Benetti, S. & Passchier, S., 23 Mar 2018, SP475 Glaciated Margins: The Sedimentary and Geophysical Archive. Le Heron, D. P., Hogan, K. A., Phllips, E. R., Huuse, M., Busfield, M. E. & Graham, A. G. C. (eds.). Vol. 475. (Special Publications; vol. 475).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

grain size
debris flow