Elodie Brisset

Postdoctorante - ANR Paléopersepolis

Institut Méditerranéen de Biodiversité et d’Ecologie Marine et Continentale
IMBE - UMR CNRS 7263 - IRD 237
Europôle de l’Arbois, Bât Villemin BP80
13545 Aix en Provence cedex 04
+33 (0)4 42 90 84 84

elodie.brisset at imbe.fr


GIF - 3.6 ko

Keywords : paleoecology, lake sediment, holocene, Human-Environment-Climate interactions


Within the context of increasing demographic pressures and hazards related to climate change, the problems posed by landscape erosion have become crucial.

Retrospective analysis of environmental trajectories conducted from lake sediments and multidisciplinary researches (geomorphology, geochemistry, palynology), enable the quantification of erosion over millennia.

It allows to study ecosystem robustness, elasticity and regime shift to perturbations.

I am postdoc in the French National Research Agency in the frame of the ANR Paléopersepolis (lead by M. Djamali, IMBE). I am investigating landscapes evolution in the Zagros mountains (Iran) during the Lateglacial and the Holocene.

Study areas : European and Mediterranean (Alps, Rif), Andean (Bolivia, Chile), Central Asia (Iran, Kirghizistan)

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Maharlou lake (Iran)
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Lake of Allos (France)
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Lake Titicaca (Bolivia/Peru)
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Lake Chungara (Chile)

Research projects

  • MedCoRe (2017-2018) Mediterranean Coastal Resources : benefits and constraints from Prehistoric hunters-gatherers, dir. E. Brisset (IPHES, Spain), financ. Marie Sklodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship (European Union).
  • Traçage isotopique des changements climatiques rapides à l’Holocène en lien
    avec l’occupation humaine dans le « croissant fertile » iranien (2016-2017))
    , dir. A. Véron (CEREGE) et M. Djamali (IMBE), financ. ECCOREV.
  • GlaciVAR (2016-2017) Reconstruction des oscillations glaciaires dans un système ’source‐to‐sink’ référence : le bassin‐versant du Var , dir. S. Toucane (IFREMER), S. Jorry (IFREMER), V. Rinterknecht (LGP), financ. IFREMER
  • PaléoBol (2014-2018)Reconstitution paléoenvironnementale des changements climatiques, écologiques et des activités anthropiques dans les archives sédimentaires du lac Titicaca, Bolivie), dir. S. Guédron (IRD, ISTerre, UMSA), financ. ISTerre.
  • KLaP² (2014-2015) [Kirghizistan : LAkes, Paleoenvironments and Paleoclimates]. Dynamique des écosystèmes et des paléoclimats passés à partir des archives paléoenvironnementales de haute montagne au Kirghizistan), dir. C. Miramont (IMBE), financ. ECCOREV.
  • ForHuMM (2014-2015) Forêts et occupation Humaine des Montagnes au littoral Méditerranéen de la Préhistoire au milieu du XIXe s.), dir D. Isoardi, J.-L. Edouard, F. Mocci (CCJ-CNRS), financ. LabexMED.
  • PIT Mercantour (2011-2013) Étude de l’usage et de l’occupation du sol du territoire Mercantour. Projet d’Intérêt Transfrontalier, lot. 1 : Analyses paléo-environnementales, dir. Frédéric Guiter (IMBE), resp. Franck Suméra (CCJ, SRA PACA), financ. Parc National du Mercantour.
  • HOMERE (2011-2012) Homme, Milieu, Ecosystèmes et Risques Environnementaux, dir. Christine Paillès (CEREGE) et Frédéric Guiter (IMBE), financ. ECCOREV.
  • LADICIA (2010-2013) Quand l’homme et le climat façonnent la montagne méridionale. Le Lac d’Allos : une histoire du Détritisme, des Instabilités Climatiques et des Impacts Anthropiques, dir. Cécile Miramont (IMBE), financ. Région PACA.
  • PCR Mercantour (2009) Peuplement et occupation du sol du Massif du Mercantour au cours de l’Holocène, dir. Franck Suméra (CCJ, SRA PACA), financ. Parc National du Mercantour.

Investigation of the Lake Maharlou sediments

par Elodie Brisset

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During the last decade, numerous endorheic lakes of the semi-arid Iranian plateau have critically dried up (e.g. Lake Urmia, Lake Parishan, Lake Maharlou,…), questioning long-term sustainability of water resource to economic development. It is manifest that dam construction and irrigation preclude water from flowing into lake affecting water deficit. However, which role play climate changes in current lake water deficit ? Retrospective studies using fossil archives allow investigating environmental variability over time which is the first step toward recognizing forcing factors and rate of change.

A core extracted from the Lake Maharlou (close to the city of Chiraz), covering the last 3500 years, has been investigated through sedimentological and geochemical analyses.
Our results aim to access to the last millennia hydrological changes of the lake that will help to put present-day lake drying in a range of “natural” variability.


Research article in peer-reviewed international journal (ISI Web of Science)

Research article in non-peer-reviewed journal

Research report

  • GUITER F., GUEDRON S., PONEL P., POHER Y., CHARLET L., SABATIER P., BRISSET E., MIRAMONT C., DESPLANQUE C., 2015. Dynamique passées des écosystèmes lacustres, tourbeux et forestiers de la réserve du Luitel. Rapport de réalisation. Pôle Département de Biodiversité de l’Isère et Réserve Naturelle du Luitel.
  • MIRAMONT C., BRISSET E., CARTIER R., GUITER F., MOCCI F., POHER Y., PONEL P., TROUSSIER T., 2013. Quand l’homme et le climat façonnent la montagne méridionale. Le Lac d’Allos : une histoire du Détritisme, des Instabilités Climatiques et des Impacts Anthropiques. Rapport de réalisation LADICIA, 184 p.
  • GUITER F., MIRAMONT C., BRISSET E., CARTIER R., DELHON C., POHER Y., PONEL P., 2013. Étude de l’usage et de l’occupation du sol du territoire Mercantour. Rapport final, Lot 1 – Taches 1 et 2, Parc National du Mercantour, 142 p.

Diffusion to broader audience

  • 2016 CARTIER R., BRISSET E., SYLVESTRE F., GUITER F., PAILLES C., MIRAMONT C., Evolution à long-terme du lac d’Allos en lien avec l’histoire de son bassin versant depuis 13,500 ans (Mercantour). Journées CLIMALPSUD “climate change in the Southern Alps, awareness and adaptation”. GREC-PACA : Groupement régional d’experts sur le climat en Provence-Alpes-Côte-d’Azur. Barcelonette, France
  • 2013 MIRAMONT C., BRISSET E., GUITER F., PONEL P., MOCCI F., CARTIER R., POHER Y., TROUSSIER T., DAMBRINE E., CHAUMILLON E., ARNAUD F. Conference on Lake Allos palaeo-landscape, France.
  • 2013 Exposition panels, flyer and webpage for the Mercantour National PArk on the evolution of landscapes around the Lake Allos (FEDER, European Union).
  • 2009 Exposition panels on flooding risk in the Durance (France). Centre Méditerranéen de l’Environnement.
  • 2009 Website RISKORIF on natural risks in Northern Morocco. Centre Méditerranéen de l’Environnement et du Développement (CMED).
  • 2009 Final report on the seismic risk in the University of Tetouan, Morocco. CMED.
  • 2008 Flyer on the risk of landslide in the city of Tetouan, Morocco. CMED.

PhD thesis

par Elodie Brisset

PhD thesis abstract

Within the context of increasing demographic pressures and hazards related to climate change, the problems posed by landscape erosion have become particularly crucial. The current management of Mediterranean mountain environments, which are highly exposed to erosion hazards, needs to be supported by a thorough understanding of their susceptibility to these hazards and their long-term trajectories.

A retrospective analysis of environmental trajectories has been conducted from the study of three lacustrine sedimentary archives in the Southern Alps (Lakes Petit, Vens and Allos). This multi-disciplinary study, based on sedimentology, geochemistry and palynology, has enabled characterization of the dynamics of erosion and changes in plant cover over the last 14,000 years.

In Lakes Allos and Vens, the start of the Holocene is marked by the maturing of ecosystems, by chemical weathering of soils and by forest encroachment at higher altitudes. These environmental changes resulted in progressive ecosystem stabilization, followed by a bio-pedological optimum, and subsequently by more open landscapes, and then soil destabilization. These four successive phases have ben dated, respectively, at 12,000-8000 cal. BP, 8000-6000 cal. BP, 6000-1900 cal. BP, and 1900 cal. BP to Present. The last of these phases occurred earlier, at 4200 cal. BP, in Lake Petit. The triggering of soil erosion has systematically been hinged on periods of heavy precipitation affecting landscapes rendered vulnerable, by human societies, to the effects of such perturbations.

Keywords : mountain environment, soil erosion, vegetation dynamics, mining pollution, pastoral activities, lake sediments, Holocene