MIT EAPS Directory

Lizz Ultee

Postdoctoral Associate

Research Description

Lizz Ultee is a glaciologist specializing in the dynamics of marine outlet glaciers. Her work incorporates numerical modelling and remote sensing observations, and ranges from process-scale studies (e.g. stresses and fracture patterns associated with ice cauldron collapse) to century-scale projections (e.g. the sea level contribution from Greenland outlet glaciers). Emerging interests include the role of mountain glaciers in buffering drought, the deglaciation of US National Parks, and the effects of glacial erosion on Myr timescales.

Lizz completed her B.Sc. in mathematical physics at Queen's University, Canada. She earned her Ph.D. in climate science at the University of Michigan, working with Jeremy Bassis. Thanks to her own multi-disciplinary background, Lizz is always excited about collaborations that transcend disciplines to inform new perspectives.


Bassis, J. N. and Ultee, L. (2019). "A thin film viscoplastic theory for calving glaciers: Towards a bound on the calving rate of glaciers." Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface.

Ultee, L., Arnott, J. C., Bassis, J. N., and Lemos, M. C. (2018). "From ice sheets to main streets: Intermediaries connect climate scientists to coastal adaptation." Earth's Future 6(3): 299-304. doi:10.1002/2018EF000827

Boone, L., Ultee, L., Waisanen, E., Newell, J., Thorne, J.A. and Hardin, R. (2018). "Collaborative creation and implementation of a Michigan Sustainability Case on urban farming in Detroit." Case Studies in the Environment 2(1): 8-13. doi: 10.1525/cse.2017.000703

Ultee, L. and Bassis, J.N. (2017). "A plastic network approach to model calving glacier advance and retreat." Frontiers in Earth Sciences. 5(24). doi: 10.3389/feart.2017.00024

Ultee, L. and Bassis, J. N. (2016). "The future is Nye: an extension of the perfect plastic approximation to tidewater glaciers." Journal of Glaciology. 62(236): 1143-1152. doi: 10.1017/jog.2016.108

Contact Information




Ph.D. Climate Science, University of Michigan, 2018
B.Sc. Honors Mathematical Physics, Queen's University, 2013