Dr Alison Monaghan

Dr Alison Monaghan


Location: Edinburgh

Tel: 0131 6500 298

E-mail Dr Alison Monaghan


  •  1997 – ongoing : Geologist, British Geological Survey
  •  1997 : PhD University of Edinburgh
  •  1994 : BA (Hons) University of Cambridge, Geological Sciences

Current projects and collaboration

  • 21st Century Exploration Roadmap: Palaeozoic project. Project leader - working with the Oil and Gas Authority, Oil and Gas UK and industry partners
  • DECC-BGS Carboniferous shale resource estimation, Midland Valley of Scotland
  • National Geological Model - bedrock modelling, QC and metadata, model uncertainty
  • Clyde Catchment (CUSP) and Forth catchment (GOForth) interdisciplinary research, bedrock and superficial modelling, Midland Valley of Scotland
  • Geochronological studies of the Permo-Carboniferous, Central Scotland

Research interests

  • 3D geological modelling and basin analysis synthesised with diverse geological information to answer key questions in numerous settings (e.g. coalfields, shale gas, CCS, hydrocarbon prospectivity). Documentation of model uncertainty
  • Carboniferous geochronology, stratigraphy and tectonics
  • Petroleum systems and prospectivity (conventional and unconventional)
  • Urban and coalfield geology
  • Carbon capture and storage


  • Project leadership for industry, Government and academic partners
  • 3D modelling and basin analysis in petroleum geoscience, urban geology, coalfields, CCS
  • Central Scotland & North Sea Carboniferous stratigraphy and geochronology
  • Regional hydrocarbon prospectivity of the Palaeozoic UKCS
  • Extensional and strike-slip basin evolution
  • Shale gas and shale oil geological resource estimation

Professional association

  • Fellow of The Geological Society, London and Edinburgh Geological Society.
  •  2002 : Chartered Geologist

Published outputs

Key papers

MONAGHAN, A A, BROWNE, M A E, BARFOD D N. 2014. An improved chronology for the Arthur’s Seat volcano and Carboniferous magmatism of the Midland Valley of Scotland. Scottish Journal of Geology, 50, 165-172

MONAGHAN, A.A. 2014. The Carboniferous shales of the Midland Valley of Scotland: geology and resource estimation. British Geological Survey for Department of Energy and Climate Change, London, UK. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/bgs-midland-valley-of-scotland-shale-reports

MONAGHAN A A, FORD J, MILODOWSKI A, McINROY D, PHARAOH T, RUSHTON J, BROWNE M, COOPER A, HULBERT A, NAPIER B. 2012. New insights from 3D geological models at analogue CO2 storage sites in Lincolnshire and eastern Scotland, UK. Proceedings of the Yorkshire Geological Society, 59 (1). 53-76. 10.1144/pygs.59.1.289

UNDERHILL, J R, MONAGHAN, A A and BROWNE, M A E. 2008. Controls on Structural Styles, Basin Development and Petroleum Prospectivity in the Midland Valley of Scotland. Journal of Marine and Petroleum Geology, 25, 1000–1022.

MERRITT, J E, MONAGHAN, A A, ENTWISLE, D C, HUGHES, A G, CAMPBELL, S D G and BROWNE, M A E. 2007. 3D attributed models for addressing environmental and engineering geoscience problems in areas of urban regeneration : a case study in Glasgow, UK. First Break, 25, 79–84

MONAGHAN, A A and PARRISH R R. 2006. Geochronology of Carboniferous - Permian volcanism in the Midland Valley of Scotland: implications for regional tectono-magmatic evolution and the numerical timescale. Journal of the Geological Society of London, 163, 15–28.