Going to the Ends of the Earth: Exploring Climate Change in Polar Regions

Julie Palais, Ph.D.
Division of Polar Programs
National Science Foundation
Tuesday, Sep. 17, 2019, 12:10pm
Chase 105

Recent media attention on the subject of global climate change and sea level rise has focused public interest on the research of polar glaciologists. In this talk, Dr. Palais will discuss her career in polar science and her many trips to Antarctica and Greenland.


Dr. Julie Palais was a Program Director at the National Science Foundation in the Office of Polar Programs. Dr. Palais managed the Antarctic Glaciology program that supports university scientists and their students to do cutting edge research on the Antarctica ice sheet.  She directed Polar Glaciology research at NSF from 1990 until she retired at the end of 2016. Her research programs have emphasized various aspects of glaciology including the history and dynamics the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets and paleoclimate from ice cores. Her own research, done before coming to NSF, involved the study of volcanic fallout in ice cores.  

She holds a B.A. cum laude from the University of New Hampshire and an M.S. and Ph.D. from Ohio State University. She is a member of the American Geophysical Union, the International Glaciological Society, the Explorers Club and the American Polar Society. Palais Glacier and Palais Bluff in the Antarctic have been named in her honor.  She was a co-recipient the Explorers Club’s Lowell Thomas Award in 2007 for her contributions to climate change research and the recipient of the Richardson Medal for “outstanding service contributions” to the International Glaciological Society (IGS) and the field of glaciology.  In May 2019, Dr. Palais was awarded an honorary degree from UNH for her contributions to climate change research.