Research Themes

Research expertise in the Department of Earth, Geographic, and Climate Sciences spans the full range of geology and geography, and provides a fundamental basis for the integrated, global-scale study of earth systems. The faculty in the Department of Earth, Geographic, and Climate Sciences address some of the major environmental challenges society faces today. Clearly, one critical aspect is defining the physical impacts of anthropogenic climate change on global and regional scales. Other critical aspects that Geosciences has to offer are research into the dynamics of how planet Earth works on a variety of temporal and spatial scales, and how societies cope with a rapidly changing world. While some departments have abundant specialties concerning the interactions within the critical zone, the “heterogeneous, near surface environment in which complex interactions involving rock, soil, water, air, and living organisms regulate the natural habitat and determine the availability of life-sustaining resources” (NRC, 2001), the Department of Earth, Geographic, and Climate Sciences provides expertise on the entire Earth’s environment below, within and above the critical zone, as well as the human dimensions of global environmental change.

Our research strengths are organized into four themes: 1) Earth Dynamics, 2) Global Climate Change and Surficial Processes, 3) Water and the Environment, and 4) Geography, Society and Environment. Choose a research theme to learn more about the diverse interests of our faculty and students, as well as the many exciting projects currently underway.