The Environmental Change Research Group focuses on the mechanisms, rates and trajectories of past, present and future environmental change at regional to global scales, and on the implications for the biosphere and society. Our research team comprises comprises 11 staff, 5 Post Doctoral Researchers and 5 PhD students with complementary research interests in ecology and palaeoecology, palaeoceanography, palaeoclimatology and climate change, geomorphology, glaciology and geochronology, the societal impacts of environmental change and resource management. Collectively, we engage a global canvas that extends from tropical rainforests to arctic glaciers, and over timescales spanning the past million years to the future.

St Andrews Glaciology focuses on the dynamics of ice masses and their interactions with ocean and climate, including calving processes, ice/ocean interactions, surge glacier dynamics, glacio-speleology (ice caving) and the response of Himalayan glaciers to climate change.

Our tropical peatland research focuses on understanding the distribution, carbon storage, and ecological dynamics (on timescales from months to millennia) of newly-discovered peat-forming wetlands in Amazonia and Africa.


We investigate the palaeoceanography, palaeoecology, climate change, environmental archaeology, land-use change and socio-ecological systems of the North Atlantic region (Greenland, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, Scotland).


We reconstruct Holocene environmental change and landscape evolution in a wide range of terrestrial and offshore shelf environments.

We research vegetational and climatic change in the Mediterranean region over multiple glacial-interglacial cycles.




We study ecosystem resilience and early warning signals of thresholds and transitions to alternative states in Earth systems.

We assess the ecological, societal and economic impacts of past, present and future environmental changes and their implications for conservation, resource management and communities.