J.P. is a professor of oceanography and a geological oceanographer with a doctorate in oceanography from the University of Washington, a master of science in marine environmental science from Stony Brook University, and a bachelor’s degree in geology from Colgate University.
His research focuses on coastal sedimentary processes and related phenomena, such as coastal erosion and the identification of sand resources for beach nourishment. He uses sediment characteristics, oceanographic measurements, and geophysical methods to understand the processes shaping the shoreline and seafloor.
Before joining GSO, he was a professor at East Carolina University and program head for coastal processes at the University of North Carolina Coastal Studies Institute.
Over the last few years, he has spearheaded efforts to evaluate estuary and barrier-island dynamics and sand resources offshore of North Carolina. Internationally, Walsh is also well known for his research investigating how materials discharged by rivers are dispersed and accumulate in the ocean.
He has conducted research around the world including in Papua New Guinea, Puerto Rico, New Zealand, California and the Gulf of Mexico. His work is important to understanding geochemical cycling, evaluating ecosystem changes, defining coastal hazards and managing natural resources.
In 2017, Walsh was a Fulbright Research Scholar at the Université de Bordeaux, where he conducted research in southwest France on coastal changes related to storm events and human activities over the last several decades.