ICG2022-18

Hillslope Processes and Landforms
Conveners: Irasema Alcántara-Ayala, Katja Laute, Jean Poesen, João Osvaldo, Maria José Roxo

Hillslopes are the most common landforms on the surface of the Earth, and therefore are of great interest for geomorphology. Dominant types of hillslope processes and landforms are associated with gravity, flowing water, ice, wind, and temperature changes, and hence are reflected in weathering, erosion, slope instability and sediment deposition. Owing to climate, topography, lithology, geological structure, and vegetation, hillslope dynamics involve complex and variable processes and process combinations. Furthermore, under the current context of global change, human influence has played a significant role in slope dynamics in urban and rural areas; this is strongly related to the history of human occupation. Therefore, hillslope processes are closely linked to natural and social dynamics as the slopes can be covered by natural materials (regolith or soil, or exposed rock outcrops), by a modified surface or more often, the combination of both. When hillslopes are occupied by communities in a non-sustainable manner, a large disequilibrium is produced and environmental problems arise, such as those expressed through the occurrence of geomorphological hazards. This session will address both natural and human-induced hillslope processes. Special attention will be given to understanding and addressing the linkages between hillslopes and anthropogenic systems. Topics of interest may include, but are not limited to the following: weathering, erosion, mass movement processes, denudation rates, sediment transport and deposition, hillslope–channel coupling, runoff and sediment connectivity, evolution of landforms, strength and behavior of rocks and soils, vegetation (both surface and subsurface biomass), water on hillslopes, land use changes and climatic controls on hillslope dynamics.