Two major thrusts of research exist in our department: Environmental Studies and Earth Sciences. Both are briefly described below. For a more in depth review of research in each major research branch in our department, please click on the links in the left side menu. View a list of research papers including student authors here and see the list of theses and dissertations here.
Environmental Studies Research
The environmental area of research is devoted to improving the ways in which humans conserve, manage, and live within nature. We conduct basic and applied research into the functioning of Earth's biophysical systems including agriculture, as well as the political, economic, educational, and social systems which govern human societies. We seek to better understand the interactions between natural and human systems and to apply this improved understanding to the solution of environmental problems. As part of the PhD program in Earth System Sciences, the PhD major in Natural Resources Science and Management provides such opportunities to students.
Major areas of research within the department are described in the link to the left. Links to Core Faculty websites are listed under the different themes, but prospective students should remember that more research themes are available through our Affiliated Faculty.
Earth Scientists solve problems of changing climate, weather forecasting, groundwater supply and quality, environmental hazards, geotechnical engineering, minerals exploration, energy exploration and production, and natural resources. Additionally, research may be conducted exploring structural geology/tectonics, igneous petrology/geochemistry/economic geology, hydrogeology and environmental geology, stratigraphy/sedimentology, paleobiology, geophysics/paleomagnetics and remote sensing/geographic information systems. We also conduct research of the regional geology of Southern Florida, the Caribbean, and Latin America, including problems related to the above-mentioned fields.