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Martin Kirkbride

Reader Geography and Environmental Science, University of Dundee

I am a cold-climate geoscientist with research interests in climate history and glacial landforms. My specialist research areas include debris-covered glacier dynamics, dating and reconstruction of glacier fluctuations, landform genesis, and landscape evolution. I studied the Tasman Glacier in New Zealand for my PhD, and have worked in Antarctica, Iceland, the European Alps and Nepal. My interest in the Laki eruption is an extension of research into how Iceland's glaciers were affected by the climatic variations of the Little Ice Age, using volcanic ash layers in soils to work out a chronology of change. My teaching at the University of Dundee covers geomorphology and climate change at all levels of our BSc and MA degree programmes. I enjoy the opportunities for field work with students offered by the landscapes of Scotland's eastern mountains and coastline.


  • 1991–present
    Reader, University of Dundee


  • 1989 
    University of Canterbury NZ, PhD
  • 1984 
    University of St Andrews, BSc Geology and Geography


  • 2021
    Atmospheric effects in Scotland of the AD 1783-84 Laki eruption in Iceland, The Holocene 31 (5)
  • 2020
    Processes at the margins of supraglacial debris cover: quantifying dirty ice ablation and debris redistribution, Earth Surface Processes and Landforms 45, 2272-2290.
  • 2020
    The value of disturbed tephra sequences, Jounral of Quaternary Science 35, 23-38
  • 2020
    The empirical basis for modelling glacial erosion rates, Nature Communications 11 759

Professional Memberships

  • Quaternary Research Association
  • Royal Scottish Geographical Society
  • British Society for Geomorphology
  • Edinburgh Geological Society
  • Scottish Alliance for Geosciences, Environment and Society


President's Medal of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society