EAPS congratulates Professor Oliver Jagoutz, who has been granted tenure by the Executive Committee of the Corporation.
Associate Professor of Geology Oliver (‘Oli’) Jagoutz studies the formation and evolution of Earth’s continental crust, the tectonic evolution of the Himalaya/Tibet system, and the effects of geological processes on climate. Despite decades of research crust formation has remained enigmatic, with implications for understanding of the land we live on, the chemical differentiation of planetary interiors in general, and the interplay between changes in the ‘solid’ Earth and climate. Oli’s research comprises field mapping and geochemical and geophysical analysis of samples that he brings back from the field. He usually spends a couple of months a year in field areas all over the world, and he regularly leads department field trips, but his main research has focused on the only known complete cross-section of exhumed continental crust, exposed in northern Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Years of cross-disciplinary study enabled him to produce seminal results concerning first-order problems in Earth sciences, including: (1) the processes that lead to the formation, large-scale chemical stratification, and bulk composition of the Earth’s continental crust and (2) the causes and consequences of tectonic processes that occurred during the closure of the Neotethys, the ocean that existed to the south of Eurasia and which disappeared when Africa and India converged on Eurasia. The latter concerned collaborative research with EAPS professor Leigh (Wiki) Royden and includes explanations for the fast closure of India and Asia and the drawdown of CO2 (a reverse green house effect due to geological carbon sequestration) and subsequent cooling tens of millions of years ago.
Story Image: Oliver Jagoutz - Image credit: Helen Hill