Reader in Glaciology and Geophysics
Awarded the Polar Medal by H.M. the Queen in 2013 for contributions to Arctic and Antarctic science, my principal research addresses the causes and pace of polar ice-sheet change, and the contributions of polar ice sheets to global sea levels.
My group and I use a wide array of geophysical, remote sensing and modelling techniques to unravel contemporary glacial change and processes, and to link modern subglacial environments and landforms to the deglaciated landscapes left behind by the retreat of ice sheets across the Northern Hemisphere.
Much of my research focus is in West Antarctica, but I also work in the High Arctic.
Read more about my research here.
View all my publications, with free PDFs, here.
Opportunities for Postgraduate and Postdoctoral Research:
If you have a strong curriculum vitae/resume, like what you see on these pages, and would like to undertake glaciological research in Edinburgh, I would be delighted to guide you towards funding schemes and help to develop applications. Anyone joining my group will be well integrated into the wider relevant research groups in Glaciology, Land Surface Dynamics, Global Change and Earth and Planetary Science. If you're interested, check out the following then contact me to discuss a relevant application:
- Fellowships: Good opportunities to fund glaciological research are provided by NERC, EPSRC, EU (Marie Curie), Leverhulme, Royal Society, Royal Society of Edinburgh. Each have different eligibility criteria, deadlines etc. I am happy to develop projects/applications with you.
- Ph.D. opportunities: A Ph.D. in Edinburgh typically takes between 3 and 4 years (full-time), and here in Edinburgh you will join one of the largest groups of glaciology students around. U.K. students will typically be funded through Edinburgh's NERC-funded "Edinburgh E3" Doctoral Training Programme, for which I typically advertise two projects in the November-January window each year. You may also be eligible for funding from the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland. Non-U.K. students should check out the Edinburgh University support schemes, but also contact me to help source further funding.
- M.Sc. opportunities: An M.Sc. in Edinburgh typically takes 1 year (full-time) and there are many exciting opportunities to integrate yourself and your research with the wider Edinburgh Glaciology group. You can do an M.Sc. by Research, which means dedicating a full year to your research project (with no taught components). An alternative route is to undertake the Taught M.Sc. programmes in Geographical Information Science or Earth Observation and Geoinformation Management, or the M.Earth.Sci, wherein I would be delighted to supervise the 6-month dissertation component in your choice of glaciology.
Damon Davies, Ph.D. candidate from Oct. 2013.
Funding: N.E.R.C. Scholarship tied to iSTAR Research Programme on West Antarctica.
Project title: The nature and dynamics of ice stream beds: assessing their role in ice-sheet stability.
Additional supervisors: Matteo Spagnolo (Aberdeen), Alistair Graham (Exeter), David Vaughan (British Antarctic Survey)
Frazer Christie, Ph.D. candidate from Sep. 2014.
Funding: Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland Scholarship hosted in Edinburgh E3 NERC Doctoral Training Programme.
Project title: Constraining ice, ocean and climate interaction around West Antarctica.
Additional supervisors: Noel Gourmelen, Simon Tett (Edinburgh), Hamish Pritchard (British Antarctic Survey), Stuart Cunningham (Scottish Association of Marine Science, Oban)
Richard Delf, Ph.D. candidate from Sep. 2015.
Funding: N.E.R.C. Scholarship, part of Edinburgh E3 NERC Doctoral Training Programme.
Project title: Characterisation of subglacial hydrology in Svalbard using ground-based radar.
Additional supervisors: Nick Hulton (PI, Edinburgh), Antonis Giannopoulos, Andrew Curtis (Edinburgh)
Kyrah McKenzie, M.Sc. candidate from Sep. 2016.
Project title: Assessment of grounding-line migration pre- and post-ice-shelf breakups in Antarctica.
Additional supervisor: Noel Gourmelen (Edinburgh)
David Ashmore, Ph.D., 2014
Thesis: The basal environment of Antarctic ice streams from airborne ice-penetrating radar.
Additional supervisor: Richard Hindmarsh (British Antarctic Survey)
David has continued to pursue Antarctic research, from 2014-16 in the Centre for Glaciology, Aberystwyth University, undertaking Antarctic field seasons in 2014 and 2015, and from 2017 as a Postdoctoral Researcher at the University of Liverpool.
Philip Prescott, Ph.D., 2013, Durham University
Thesis: Assessing the control of subglacial bed roughness on rates of basal ice flow.
Lead supervisor: Chris Stokes (Durham)
Philip now works in industry.
Nanna Karlsson, Ph.D., 2011, University of Hull
Thesis: Radio-echo sounding of Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica.
Lead supervisor: David Rippin (now at University of York)
Nanna has continued to pursue polar research, from 2012-16 at the Niels Bohr Institute, Copenhagen, and from 2016 as Researcher at the Alfred-Wegener Institut, Germany. This has taken her both to the Greenland Ice Sheet and Antarctica.
Oliver Marsh, Research Assistant, 2008, British Antarctic Survey
Oli worked for me in BAS over summer 2008 on radar data collected from West Antarctica.
Oli continues in polar research at Gateway Antarctica, New Zealand, where he did his Ph.D. following an M.Sc. at Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge. He also spent a year at Scripps Institute of Oceanography, California.
Membership of Professional Bodies
- International Glaciological Society
- American Geophysical Union
- European Geosciences Union
- British Geophysical Association (arm of the Royal Astronomical Society)
- International Association of Hydrological Sciences