Geoscience is a multi-disciplinary journal aimed at bringing together top-quality research across the entire spectrum of the Earth Sciences along with relevant work in related areas. Geosciences Journal opens a new era for the publication of geoscientific research articles in English, covering geology, geophysics, geochemistry, paleontology, structural geology, mineralogy, petrology, stratigraphy, sedimentology, environmental geology, economic geology, petroleum geology, hydrogeology, remote sensing and planetary geology.

Paul Sumner

Editorial Board Member of Geosciences

Associate Professor, Department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology, University of Pretoria, South Africa

Research Areas

Geomorphology: soil erosion, rock weathering, cold climates


2003Ph.D.University of Pretoria
1995M.Sc.University of Natal
1991B.Sc.University of Natal


2007-presentAssociate Professor, University of Pretoria
2007-2011Co-editor South African Geographical Journal
2005-2006Senior Lecturer, University of Pretoria
1997-2004Lecturer, University of Pretoria
1995-1996Lecturer, University of Fort Hare


Southern African Association of Geomorphologists
Society of South African Geographers
National Committee of the International Geographical Union

Publications: Journals

[1]  Le Roux, J.J. and Sumner, P.D. In press: Factors controlling gully development: comparing continuous and discontinuous gullies. Land Degradation and Development. DOI: 10.1002/ldr.1083
[2]  Sumner, P.D., Hall, K.J., Meiklejohn, K.I. and Nel, W. in press: Weathering. In Meadows, M.E. and Holmes, P.J. Eds, The Geomorphology of Southern Africa.
[3]  Hall, K.J., Thorn, C.E. and Sumner, P.D. 2012: On the persistence of ‘weathering’. Geomorphology, 149/150, 1-10
[4]  Nel, W., Reynhardt, D.A. & Sumner, P.D. 2010: Effect of altitude on erosive characteristics of concurrent rainfall events in the northern KwaZulu-Natal Drakensberg. Water SA, 36, 509-512.
[5]  Hall, K., Meiklejohn, I., Sumner, P. & Arocena, J. 2010: Light penetration into Clarens Sandstone and implications for deterioration of San rock art. Geoarchaeology, 25, 122-136.
[6]  Sumner, P.D., Hall, K.J., van Rooy, L. & Meiklejohn, K.I. 2009: Rock weathering on the eastern mountains of southern Africa: Review and insights from case studies. Journal of African Earth Sciences, 55, 236-244.
[7]  Le Roux, J.J., Morgenthal, T.L., Malherbe, J., Pretorius, D.J. & Sumner P.D. 2008: Water erosion prediction at a national scale for South Africa. Water SA, 305-314.
[8]  Sumner, P.D. & Loubser, M.J. 2008: Experimental sandstone weathering using different wetting and drying moisture amplitudes. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 33, 385-390
[9]  Nel, W. & Sumner, P.D. 2008: Rainfall and temperature attributes on the Lesotho-Drakensberg escarpment edge, southern Africa. Geografiska Annaler, 90 A, 97-108.
[10]  Hall, K.J. Meiklejohn, K. I., Arocena, J., Prinsloo, L., Sumner, P.D. & Hall, L. 2007: Deterioration of San rock art: new findings, new challenges. South African Journal of Science, 103, 361-362.
[11]  Nel, W. & Sumner, P.D. 2007: Intensity, energy and erosivity attributes of storm events Drakensberg, South Africa. South African Journal of Science, 103, 398-402.
[12]  Le Roux, J.J., Newby, T.S. & Sumner, P.D. 2007: Monitoring soil erosion in South Africa at a regional scale: review and recommendations. South African Journal of Science, 103 , 329-335.
[13]  Hedding, D.W., Sumner, P.D. Holness, S. & Meiklejohn, K.I. 2007: Development of a pronival rampart on sub-Antarctic Marion Island. Antarctic Science, 19, 443-450..
[14]  Sumner, P.D., Hedding, D.W. & Meiklejohn, K.I. 2007: Rock surface temperatures in southern Namibia and implications for thermally-driven physical weathering. Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie, 51: Suppl.1, 133-147.
[15]  Nel, W. & Sumner, P.D. 2006: Trends in rainfall total and variability (1970 – 2000) along the KwaZulu-Natal Drakensberg foothills. South African Geographical Journal, 88, 130-137.
[16]  Sumner, P.D. 2006: On the nature of southern African geographical publications, 2000-2004. South African Geographical Journal, 88, 213-218.
[17]  Sumner, P.D. & Nel, W. 2006: Surface-climate attributes at Injisuthi Outpost, Drakensberg, and possible ramifications for weathering. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 31, 1445-1451.
[18]  Nel, W. & Sumner, P.D. 2005: First rainfall data from the KZN Drakensberg escarpment edge (2002 and 2003). Water SA, 31, 399-402.
[19]  Le Roux, J.J., Sumner, P.D. & Rughooputh, S.D.D.V. 2005: Soil erosion modelling in a southern catchment on Mauritius. South African Geographical Journal, 87, 129-140.
[20]  Sumner, P.D. & Meiklejohn, K.I. 2004: On the development of autochthonous blockfields in the grey basalts of sub-Antarctic Marion Island. Polar Geography, 28, 120-132.
[21]  Sumner, P.D., Meiklejohn, K.I., Nel, W. & Hedding, D.W. 2004: Thermal attributes of rock weathering: zonal or azonal? A comparison of rock temperature data from different environments. Polar Geography, 28, 79-92.
[22]  Sumner, P.D., Meiklejohn, K.I., Boelhouwers, J.C. & Hedding, D.W. 2004: Climate change melts Marion Island's snow and ice. South African Journal of Science, 100, 395-398.
[23]  Sumner, P.D. 2004: Geomorphic and climatic implications of relict openwork block accumulations near Thabana-Nthlenyana, Lesotho. Geografiska Annaler, 86A, 289-302.
[24]  Sumner, P.D. 2004: Comment on "Characteristics and palaeoenvironmental significance of relict sorted patterned ground, Drakensberg plateau, southern Africa" by S.W. Grab. Quaternary Science Reviews, 23, 1201-1203.
[25]  Sumner, P.D. 2004: Rock weathering rates on sub-Antarctic Marion Island. Arctic, Antarctic and Alpine Research, 36, 123-127.
[26]  Sumner, P.D. 2004: Relict sorted patterned ground in Lesotho. Permafrost and Periglacial Processes, 15, 89-93.
[27]  Sumner, P.D. 2003: A contemporary winter ground thermal profile in the Lesotho highlands and implications for active and relict soil frost phenomena. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 28, 1451-1458.
[28]  Boelhouwers, J.C. & Sumner, P.D. 2003: The palaeoenvironmental significance of southern African blockfields and blockstreams. In Phillips, M. et al. (Eds), Permafrost-ICOP 2003, Swets and Zeitlinger, Lisse, 73-78.
[29]  Boelhouwers, J., Holness, S. & Sumner, P.D. 2003: The Subantarctic: A distinct periglacial environment. Geomorphology, 52, 39-55.
[30]  Sumner, P.D. & de Villiers, S. 2002: On the palaeoenvironmental implications of the Amatola Screes.South African Journal of Science, 98, 598 601.
[31]  Sumner, P.D., Nel, W., Holness, S. & Boelhouwers, J. 2002: Rock weathering characteristics as relative-age indicators for glacial and post-glacial landforms on Marion Island. South African Geographical Journal, 84, 153-157.
[32]  Boelhouwers, J., Holness, S., Meiklejohn, K.I. & Sumner, P.D. 2002: Observations on a blockstream in the vicinity of Sani Pass, Lesotho Highlands. Permafrost and Periglacial Processes, 13, 251-257.
[33]  Beckedahl, H.R., Sumner, P.D. & Garland, G.G. 2002: South African geomorphology: critical choices for the future. South African Geographical Journal, 84, 145-152.
[34]  Sumner, P.D. & Nel, W.N. 2002: The effect of rock moisture on Schmidt hammer rebound: tests on rock samples from Marion Island and South Africa. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 27, 1137-1142.
[35]  Bijker, H.J., Sumner, P.D., Meiklejohn, K.I. & Bredenkamp, G. 2001: Documenting the effect of veld burning on soil and vegetation properties in Giant's Castle Game Reserve, KNZ Drakensberg. South African Geographical Journal, 83, 28-33.
[36]  Boelhouwers, J., Holness, S. & Sumner, P.D. 2000: Geomorphological characteristics of small debris flows on Junior's Kop, Marion Island, Maritime sub-Antarctic. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 25, 341-352.
[37]  Sumner, P.D. & Meiklejohn, K.I. 2000: Landscape evolution in a changing environment. In Fox, R. and Rowntree, K. (Eds), The Geography of South Africa in a Changing World, Oxford, Cape Town, 304-325. ISBN 0195716825.
[38]  Grab, S., Boelhouwers, J., Hall, K.J., Meiklejohn, K.I. & Sumner, P.D. 1999: Quaternary Periglacial Phenomena in the Sani Pass Area, Southern Africa. Field Guide to the INQUA XV Congress, 40pp.
[39]  Sumner, P.D. & Meiklejohn, K.I. 1998: Weathering and slope processes in southern Africa: a bibliography. SA Association of Geomorphologists Occasional Paper, 6, 23pp, ISBN 0868103527.
[40]  Sumner, P.D. 1997: Footpath erosion in Giant's Castle Game Reserve, Natal Drakensberg, South Africa. Geoökodynamik, Plus 4, 49-60.
[41]  Sumner, P.D. 1995: Soil loss from footpaths in Giant's Castle Game Reserve, South Africa. 1994 IGU Conference Proceedings, Charles University, Prague.
[42]  Sumner, P.D. 1995: Cutbacks in the Natal Drakensberg Escarpment: an hypothesis on their origin-a response. South African Journal of Science, 91, 285-286.
[43]  Sumner P.D. 1993: A landslide complex near Sani Pass, Natal Drakensberg, South Africa. Geoökodynamik, 14, 93-103.