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Durham University

Department of Earth Sciences

Staff and Postgraduate Students

Prof Gillian Foulger, B.A., M.A., M.Sc., Ph.D.

Personal web page

Emeritus Professor of Geophysics in the Department of Earth Sciences
Professorial Fellow of St Chad's College
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 33 42314

Contact Prof Gillian Foulger

Please visit my home page at


2004 – present — Professor, University of Durham.

1997 – 2004 — Reader, University of Durham.

1992 – 1993 — Geophysicist, U.S. Geological Survey.

1985 – 1997 — Lecturer in Geophysics, University of Durham.

1985 — Post Doctoral RA, Dept. Geological Sciences, Univ. Durham.

1985  — Ph.D. Geophysics (Durham)

1978 — M.A. (Cambridge)

1977 – 1984 — Research Scientist, Geophysics Division, University of Iceland.

1976 — M.Sc. Geophysics (Durham) 

1974  — B.A. Natural Sciences (Cambridge)

Committee and Society Service

2004 – 2009 — Steering Committee for the Large Igneous Provinces Commission of the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior (IAVCEI).

2005 — Scientific committee member, SAL2005 Workshop on Ocean Island Volcanism, Cape Verde Republic

Committee member, NERC Geophysical Equipment Pool

Member, NASA Earth Observation System (EOS) Evaluation Panel

Durham University representative, Universities Navstar Consortium (UNAVCO)

Durham University interview panels in Earth Science, Physics, Mathematics, Engineering and Archaeology

Member, St. Mary’s & St. Chad’s Colleges governing bodies

Conferences and Workshops

2005  The Great Plume Debate, Chapman Conference held in Scotland, sponsored by the American Geophysical Union.

2004 — Convener and chair, special session “Plumes or not?”, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco

2003 — Initiated and convened Plume IV: Beyond the Plume Hypothesis, a Penrose Conference held in Iceland, and sponsored by the Geological Society of America.


2005 — Fellow, Icelandic National Academy of Sciences

2001 — Sir James Knott Research Fellow

1993 — Nuffield Foundation Fellow

Invited Keynotes

2007 — "Iceland: What we know and what we don't" at the Rift to Ridge IODP meeting in Southampton

Membership of Organisations and Societies

Fellow, Icelandic National Academy of Sciences

Fellow, Royal Astronomical Society

American Geophysical Union

Society of Exploration Geophysicists

International Association of Geodesy

Prizes & Awards

2005 — Price Medal, Royal Astronomical Society

University of Durham Sir James Knott Research Fellowship

Research Groups

Research Interests

  • Crustal deformation using the Global Positioning System (GPS)
  • Earthquake seismology
  • Geothermal prospecting
  • Iceland tectonics and structure

Selected Publications

Show all publications

Departmental Contacts

RoleNameExtemail address
Head of Department Prof. Andy Aplin 42332
Undergraduate Admissions Tutor Dr Richard J Brown 42303
Deputy Undergraduate Admissions Tutor Prof. Fred Worrall 42295
Chair of the Board of Examiners Prof. Ken McCaffrey 42299
Postgraduate Admissions Tutor Dr. Stuart Jones 42319
Department Manager Mrs Jill Hoult 42326
Learning & Teaching Manager Mrs Janice Oakes 42310
Finance Manager Mrs Karen Atkinson

42318 or

Finance Administrator Mrs Paula Elliott 43490
Director of Postgraduate Studies Dr Julie Prytulak 42328
Director of Research Prof. Ed Llewellin 42336
Chair of Education Committee Prof. James Baldini 42334
Director of Undergraduate Studies Prof. Claire Horwell 42253
Staff-Student Liaison Committee Chair Prof. Claire Horwell 42253
Natural Sciences Academic Contact Prof. Yaoling Niu 42311
Safety Officer Dr Chris Ottley 42325
Safety Adviser Fieldwork Dr Nic de Paola 42333
Senior Research Administrator Mrs Dianne Whatcott 42305

Departmental Superintendent Mr James Dyson 42281

Department International Coordinator Prof. Dave Selby 42294

Contact Dave Selby