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CQR Themes

The CQR group of academics, post-doctoral researchers and PhD students is advancing science on four themes of major importance for understanding Quaternary environmental change on a global scale.  We conduct research in a variety of locations in the UK, as well as elsewhere in Europe, the Arctic, North America, Patagonia, North and South Africa, China.

Glacial reconstruction at multiple timescales

This research uses multiple methods to reconstruct past glacial dynamics.  We use high resolution remote sensing to map glacial extent over the satellite era and to map landforms demarking former glacial extent.  We use multiple chronological methods to determine and date the location of former ice margins, including cosmogenic nuclide dating, varve chronology, radiocarbon dating and  Optically Stimulated Luminescence dating.  These data provide detailed reconstructions of past ice-sheet and glacier dynamics, yielding insights into future glacier behaviour.

High-resolution terrestrial records of global climate change

Research is currently being conducted in Britain, Europe, Africa, China and the Americas into new, high-resolution archives of palaeoclimatic and palaeoenvironmental change. This adopts a deliberate multiproxy approach, encompassing sedimentology, geochemistry, tephrochronology, micromorphology and multiple palaeobiological techniques, underpinned by geochronology.  Further details and projects can be seen here

Human and faunal responses to Global Environmental Change

This research utilises state-of-the-art techniques such as 3-D geometric morphometrics combined with molecular (ancient DNA) analyses to identify dispersal, turnover and extinction events at population-level resolution in different biota.  The theme also engages with the reconstruction of patterns of early human evolution and dispersal in North Africa, Arabia, Europe and Beringia through the construction of robust chronologies for archaeological sites, reconstruction of human diet and the study of changing landscapes and environments.

Landscape and Climate Interactions

This research considers the mechanisms and impacts of glacial outburst floods and the investigation of climate and human drivers of Holocene river response through the incorporation of integrated alluvial stratigraphic and hydraulic flood modelling approaches.

Interaction of tectonics and climate change in Eurasia

Research in this field focuses on the study of loess archives of atmospheric dust formation and the application of geochemical and isotopic finger-printing tools to understand long-term shifts in climate and environment during the Neogene.


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