This thesis deals with applications of Lie symmetries in differential geometry and dynamical systems. The first chapter of the thesis studies the singular reduction of symmetries of cosphere bundles, the conservation properties of contact systems and their reduction. We generalise the results of [15] to the singular case making a complete topological and geometrical analysis of the reduced space. Applying the general theory of contact reduction developed by Lerman and Willett in [33] and [57], one obtains contact stratified spaces that lose all information of the internal structure of the cosphere bundle. Based on the cotangent bundle reduction theorems, both in the regular and singular case, as well as regular cosphere bundle reduction, one expects additional bundle-like structure for the contact strata. The cosphere bundle projection to the base manifold descends to a continuous surjective map from the reduced space at zero to the orbit quotient of the configuration space, but it fails to be a morphism of stratified spaces if we endow the reduced space with its contact stratification and the base space with the customary orbit type stratification defined by the Lie group action. In this chapter we introduce a new stratification of the contact quotient at zero, called the C-L stratification (standing for the coisotropic or Legendrian nature of its pieces) which solves the above mentioned two problems. Its main features are the following. First, it is compatible with the contact stratification of the quotient and the orbit type stratification of the configuration orbit space. It is also finer than the contact stratification. Second, the natural projection of the C-L stratified quotient space to its base space, stratified by orbit types, is a morphism of stratified spaces. Third, each C-L stratum is a bundle over an orbit type stratum of the base and it can be seen as a union of C-L pieces, one of them being open and dense in its corresponding contact stratum and contactomorphic to a cosphere bundle. The other strata are coisotropic or Legendrian submanifolds in the contact components that contain them. We also describe the relation between contact vector fields and the time dependent Hamilton-Jacobi equation. The reduction of contact systems and time dependent Hamiltonians is mentioned. In the second chapter we study geometric properties of Sasakian and Kähler quotients. We construct a reduction procedure for symplectic and Kähler manifolds using the ray preimages of the momentum map. More precisely, instead of taking as in point reduction the preimage of a momentum value μ, we take the preimage of ℝ+μ, the positive ray of μ. We have two reasons to develop this construction. One is geometric: non zero Kähler point reduction is not always well defined. The problem is that the complex structure may not leave invariant the horizontal distribution of the Riemannian submersion πμ : J-1(μ) → Mμ. The solution proposed in the literature is correct only in the case of totally isotropic momentum (i.e. Gμ = G). The other reason is that it provides invariant submanifolds for conformal Hamiltonian systems. They are usually non-autonomous mechanical systems with friction whose integral curves preserve, in the case of symmetries, the ray pre-images of the momentum map. We extend the class of conformal Hamiltonian systems already studied and complete the existing Lie Poisson reduction with the general ray one. As examples of symplectic (Kähler) and contact (Sasakian) ray reductions we treat the case of cotangent and cosphere bundles and we show that they are universal for ray reductions. Using techniques of A. Futaki, we prove that, under appropriate hypothesis, ray quotients of Kähler-Einstein or Sasaki-Einstein manifolds remain Kähler or Sasaki-Einstein. Note that it suffices to prove the Kähler case and the compatibility of ray reduction with the Boothby-Wang fibration. In the last chapter, we prove a stratification theorem for proper groupoids. First we find an equivalent way of describing the same result for a proper Lie group action, way which uses the theory of foliations and can be adapted to the language of Lie groupoids. We treat separately the case of free and proper groupoids. The orbit foliation of a proper Lie groupoid is a singular Riemannian foliation and we show this explicitly.