Welcome to Earth Sciences at The Open University
Our teaching and research in the Earth Sciences provide us with a fundamental understanding of the key natural processes that have governed the development of planet Earth over its 4.5 billion-year history. Understanding the details of these processes, and the timescales over which they operate, are critical if we are to deal successfully with some of the major challenges that humankind faces: Global climate and environmental change; sustainability of natural resources; provision of food and energy for an ever-increasing human population; sustainability of the natural environment as a habitat for the Earth’s diversity of species.
Academics in the Earth Sciences discipline have a formidable breadth of expertise and academic interests, and individually and collectively we study many different aspects of Earth processes. We work together with colleagues in other disciplines and departments at The Open University and with colleagues from universities and research institutions around the world. Our core areas of teaching and research include oceanography and paleaoceanography; present-day and palaeo-environmental change; isotope geochemistry of the Earth’s mantle, crust, oceans and atmosphere; evolution of mountain belts; volcano dynamics; stratigraphy and sedimentology; evolution and palaeontology. Much of our research into Earth’s past history has a bearing on present-day environmental change, and academics in Earth Sciences contribute to The Open University’s environmental science teaching. Our research is supported by funding from the UK Research Councils, the Royal Society, the European Union and a range of industrial and charitable sponsors.
Discipline Head - Dr Anthony Cohen
Telephone: +44 (0) 1908 858360