Roland Barthel


Department of Earth Sciences
Visiting address
Medicinaregatan 7B
41262 Göteborg

About Roland Barthel


My primary research focus is on the impact of climate change on water resources and supplies, emphasizing groundwater. Currently, my projects primarily address drought, water scarcity, and extreme weather events in Sweden and other European regions. Although my background is in natural sciences, specifically geology and hydrology, I am increasingly concentrating on societal aspects, stakeholder engagement, and collaboration with colleagues from various disciplines. While natural sciences offer essential knowledge and tools, effective solution implementation must integrate economic, political, and social considerations. My research aims to merge the understanding of physical systems with insights into how individuals and decision-makers react to changes and conditions within these systems. A notable example within this scope is private wells, numbering between 500,000 and 600,000, and a significant component of Sweden's drinking water supply. These wells are mostly unregulated and often overlooked by authorities and scientists.

Additionally, I am exploring the status and the prerequisites for interdisciplinary research bridging the gap between natural and social sciences.



My teaching specializes in hydrology and hydrogeology, subjects that were not offered at the University of Gothenburg before my arrival in 2012. I have developed two innovative courses: Applied Hydrology (GVG460) on the Master’s level and Hydrology and Hydrogeology /GV0340/GV2002) on the Bachelor’s level. I also contribute my expertise in hydrology and hydrogeology to a wide array of other courses. The Swedish job market has a substantial demand for experts in groundwater and water resources, particularly in sectors related to water supply, environmental contamination, and significant infrastructure projects, such as Västlänken.

I am responsible for the Master’s thesis courses in Earth Sciences and lead the Seminar courses for Master’s students. I hold the position of Chairman for the Earth Sciences program committee. I am honored to have been nominated for the Student Union's pedagogic prize three consecutive times, winning it in 2014 and 2016.

Currently, I am engaged in an EU (Erasmus+) project focused on developing digital modular teaching tools, in collaboration with TU Dresden, University of Graz, and the University of Barcelona.

Courses: GVG460, GV2002, GV1410, GE2120, GE5000, GVG430, GVR011, ES1300, GV0415, GV0430, GV0460, GV0401, GV0502, project courses.

Commissions (University of Gothenburg)

Department of Earth Sciences:

Head of Department, Dept. of Earth Sciences, 2018-2022

Program committee for Earth Science Education, chairman, 2022-

Department council (Institutionsråd), member, 2015-2018

Strategic task force, geovetenskaper, chairman, 2015-2016

Strategic task force, geovetenskaper, member, 2014-2015

Program committee for PhD education (PKFU), member, 2013-2023

Program committee for research (PROF), member 2013-2015

Faculty of Science:

Docenturnämnden, member, 2015-2018