Mead Allison, a well-known coastal researcher, has been hired as director of the Water Institute of the Gulf’s physical processes and sediment systems, Institute officials announced Wednesday.

Allison was associate director of the Jackson School of Geosciences’ Institute for Geophysics at University of Texas at Austin, and has researched river delta systems for almost 25 years, Water Institute officials said in a news release announcing the appointment.

“Allison will help The Water Institute improve its understanding of the ways in which coastal environments are affected by a variety of geological processes such as sediment transport, coastal erosion, flooding, sea level rise and subsidence,” the news release said. “His initial focus will be on the availability, amount, and characteristics of river and coastal sediments and the best methods to use the limited resource for restoration and protection efforts.”

Chip Groat, chief executive officer and president of The Water Institute, said Mead brings a wealth of applied and practical experience to the Institute’s research team.

“In addition to his focus on river sediment, Mead will strengthen our understanding of the interactions among various physical processes affecting coastal systems and how they vary across the coast and through time,” Groat said.

Allison will be a professor at Tulane University’s Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences in addition to working at The Water Institute.

Formed in 2011, the Water Institute is a nonprofit independent research group involved in coordinating research needs for coastal restoration and planning in Louisiana.

It was organized through efforts of the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, the state’s Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority and others.