European Geosciences Union

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Division on Geomorphology (GM)

President: Peter van der Beek,
Deputy President: Jens Turowski,

Geomorphology is the scientific study of land-surface features and the dynamic processes that shape them. Besides focusing on the diverse physical landscapes of the Earth, geomorphologists also study surfaces of other planets. Understanding landform history and dynamics, and predicting future changes through a combination of field observations, physical experiments, and numerical modelling is at the heart of geomorphology. The division brings together research on processes that build topography trough e.g. the effects of tectonic forces as well as processes that modify the terrain such as weathering, erosion through running water, waves, glacial ice, wind and gravitational forces. Division members also study the impact of humans on geomorphological processes and investigate how geomorphological knowledge can be applied to solve problems of relevance to societies.

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Nominations for EGU 2017 awards

The Geomorphology Division awards the Ralph Alger Bagnold medal to individuals in recognition of their outstanding scientific contribution to the study of geomorphology, and also awards an Outstanding Young Scientists award to recognise remarkable scientific achievements in the field of geomorphology by an early-career scientist.

You can nominate candidates for the 2017 awards until 15 June 2016. These awards are led by the EGU membership so please get involved in the nomination process! Information on the nomination procedure can be found on the EGU Awards and Medals webpage, and details of previous GM awardees can be found here and here.

EGU 2016 summary

A huge thank you to all who attended this year’s meeting and contributed to the Geomorphology Division science programme. The 2016 meeting saw 1680 abstracts submitted to 69 GM led and co-organised sessions, including 25 oral slots, 4 interdisciplinary events and 2 dedicated PICO sessions.

Award lectures

This year’s winners were Niels Hovius, recipient of the Ralph Alger Bagnold medal for his outstanding research in the field of Earth surface science, as well as for being a key figure in European geomorphology and a versatile interdisciplinary scientist and Pierre Valla, recipient of the Outstanding Young Scientists award.

Workshops and Short Courses

This year we had a packed programme of events, for early career scientists, including workshops on supervising and tutoring students, digital terrain analysis, Bayesian modelling, publishing in GM, and the ever popular ‘Meet the Master' with this year’s master, Andreas Lang.

Social events

The annual Ralph Alger Bagnold Medal Reception was sponsored by Earth Surface Processes and Landforms and the British Society for Geomorphology. The “Junge Geomorphologen” from Germany and the Postgraduate Forum of the British Society for Geomorphology hosted the third annual social evening for Young Geomorphologists (and those that still feel young!). Everyone had a great evening of stimulating geomorphological discussion over reasonably priced beer and traditional Viennese food. This event grows in popularity year on year so we hope you can join us in 2017!

GM Division Meeting

The EGU Division on Geomorphology organises a Division Meeting each year at the EGU General Assembly. During this event, the division president reports on division activities (awards and medals, publications, current and next year General Assemblies), Union-wide news, presents the current division officers and runs the election of new ones. Thanks to all who attended and contributed this year’s meeting. The minutes and slides from the 2016 and previous years’ meetings are available in the report section.

Current issue of the EGU newsletter

EGU newsletter cover image

A new study published this month in The Cryosphere shows that all polar bear populations, found in 19 distinct Arctic regions, face a shorter sea ice season, with ice-covered days declining at the rate of 7 to 19 days per decade between 1979 and 2014. Other researchers, publishing in Earth Surface Dynamics, have investigated how the oxidation of sulfides in recent landslides drives intense weathering and how this process could be an important CO2 source. Meanwhile, a study in Biogeosciences reports observations to detect ocean carbonate chemistry outside preindustrial bounds to better understand ocean acidification impacts. Find out more about these and other studies published in EGU journals in the past month by following the links below.

In other EGU news, check our website and social media channels in the coming weeks, as we will start the call for abstracts to the EGU 2017 General Assembly in October. In addition, we are celebrating Earth Science Week (October 9–15) with a number of live question & answer sessions on Twitter and other activities. Stay tuned!

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