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Dr. Jon Harbor

Professor Emeritus Dr. Jon Harbor

Curriculum Vitae


  • Ph.D. 1990, University of Washington (Seattle), Department of Geological Sciences and Quaternary Research Center. Dissertation: Numerical modeling of the development of glacial-valley cross sections.
  • M.A. 1984, University of Colorado, Department of Geography and Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research. Thesis: Terrestrial and lacustrine evidence for Holocene climatic/geomorphic change in the Blue Lake and Green Lakes Valleys of the Colorado Front Range.
  • B.A. 1982, University of Cambridge (U.K.), Department of Geography and Girton College. 1st Class Honours. Thesis: Glacial deposits and debris transport paths, Bara Shigri Glacier, Himachal Pradesh, Indian Himalaya.

Research Interests

  • Geomorphology: Currently focusing on new insights into chronology, erosion patterns and basal thermal regimes of former glaciers and ice sheets in central Asia and Antarctica using cosmogenic radionuclide approaches.
  • Environment: Modeling, assessment and management of impacts of land use and climate change on water resources and nonpoint source pollution.
  • Education Research: Assessing student outcomes in a program engaging graduate students and middle school teacher mentors in developing and teaching middle school lessons based on the graduate students' research.

Teaching Interests Introductory courses in geography and environmental sciences, mid level undergrad and grad courses in glacial geomorphology, applied geomorphology and hydrology, senior level capstone in applied environmental geosciences (service learning), internship courses, and pre-service and in-service programs on inquiry science for K-12 teachers.

Awards and Honors

  • Fellow, American Association of Geographers, 2019-present
  • Honorary Doctorate, Stockholm University, Sweden, 2015
  • American Council on Education Fellow, 2014-15
  • Marie Curie International Incoming Fellow, European Commission, 2013-14
  • Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2010 - present
  • Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society (U.K.), 2010 - present
  • Fulbright Senior Scholar, 2000-2001, New Zealand
  • Purdue Provost’s Award for Outstanding Graduate Faculty Mentor, 2013 (top university award for graduate education)
  • Purdue Murphy Teaching Award, 2000 (top university award for undergraduate education)
  • Inducted into Purdue University’s “Book of Great Teachers”, 2008

Professional Experience

  • Author / Co-Author of over 100 journal publications and PI / Co-PI of over 50 external grants for research and teaching
  • Currently serve as Provost for Purdue University Global (Purdue’s online university serving the needs of working adults), and formerly served as Provost at the University of Montana, and at Purdue as Associate Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning, Executive Director of Digital Education, Associate Vice President for Research, Interim Dean of the College of Science, Founding Co-Director of Purdue's Discovery Learning Research Center, Founding and Interim Director of Purdue’s Global Sustainability Institute, Associate Dean for Research in the College of Science, and Head of the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences.

Recent Publications


  • Newall, J., Dymova, T., Serra, E., Blomdin, R., Fredin, O., Glasser, N., Suganuma, Y., Harbor, J., Stroeven, A. 2020 The Glacial Geomorphology of Western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. Journal of Maps , 16:2, 468-478, https://doi.org/10.1080/17445647.2020.1761464
  • Yang, M., Lowell, V., Talafha, A., Harbor, J., 2020. Transfer of Training, Trainee’s Attitudes and Best Practices in Training Design: A Multiple-Case Study. Tech Trends , 10.1007/s11528-019-00456-5
  • Yao, P., Wang, J., Harbor, J., Wang, F, Zou, L., Wang, W., Chen, X., 2020, The relative efficiency and influence of glacial and fluvial erosion on Tibetan Plateau landscapes. Geomorphology . 352, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geomorph.2019.106988
  • Bouchard, F., Sansoulet, J., Fritz, M., Malenfant-Lepage, J., Nieuwendam, A., Paquette, M., Rudy, A., Siewert, M., Sjöberg, Y., Tanski, G., Habeck, J., Harbor, J. 2019. “Frozen-Ground Cartoons”: Permafrost comics as an innovative tool for polar outreach, education, and engagement. Polar Record . https://doi.org/10.1017/S0032247418000633
  • Chen, J., Liu, Y., Gitau, M., Engel, B., Flanagan, D., Harbor, J., 2019, Evaluation of the effectiveness of green infrastructure on hydrology and water quality in a combined sewer overflow community. Science of the Total Environment , 665, 69-79. DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.01.416
  • Fu, P., Stroeven, A. P., Harbor, J., Heyman, J., Hättestrand, C., Caffee, M., 2019, Ice cap erosion patterns from bedrock 10Be and 26Al, southeastern Tibetan Plateau. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms , 44, 918-932. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/esp.4544
  • Reano, D., Masta, S., Harbor, J., 2019. Changing Future Faculty's Conceptions of SoTL. International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning , 13. https://doi.org/10.20429/ijsotl.2019.130203
  • Yu, F. and Harbor, J. 2019, CSTAT+: A GPU-accelerated spatial pattern analysis algorithm for high-resolution 2D/3D hydrologic connectivity using array vectorization and convolutional neural network operations. Environmental Modelling and Software , 120, 104496, 13p. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsoft.2019.104496
  • Yu, F. and Harbor, J. 2019, The effects of topographic depressions on multi-scale overland flow connectivity: a high-resolution spatial and temporal pattern analysis approach based on connectivity statistics. Hydrological Processes ; 33, 1403-1419. https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.13409
  • Blomdin, R., Stroeven, A. P., Harbor, J., Gribenski, N., Caffee, M., Heyman, J., Rogozhina, I., Ivanov, M., Petrakov, D., Walther, M., Rudoy, A., Zhang, W., Orkhonselenge, A., Hättestrand, C., Lifton, N., Jansson, K., 2018, Timing and dynamics of glaciation in the Ikh Turgen Mountains, Altai Region, High Asia. Quaternary Geochronology , 47, 54-71. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quageo.2018.05.008
  • Dahms, D., Egli, M., Fabel, D., Harbor, J., Brandova, D., Portes, R., Christl, M., 2018, Revised Quaternary glacial succession and post-LGM recession, southeastern Wind River Range, Wyoming, USA. Quaternary Science Reviews , 192, 167-184.
  • Orkhonselenge, A. and Harbor, J., 2018, Impacts of Modern Glacier Changes on Surface Water Resources in Western and Northern Mongolia. Journal of Water Resource and Protection , 10, 559-576. DOI: 10.4236/jwarp.2018.106031
  • Wang, J., Yao, P., Yu, B., Zou, L., Wang, F., Harbor, J., 2018, Controls on spatial variations of glacial erosion in the Qilian Shan, northeastern Tibetan Plateau. Geomorphology , 318, 128-138. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geomorph.2018.06.004
  • Askeroth, J., Nemelka, B., and Harbor, J., 2017, Changing Student Summer Behavior: Purdue Summer Stay Scholars. Summer Academe , 11, http://dx.doi.org/10.5203/sa.v11i0.603
  • Chen, J., Theller, L., Gitau, M., Engel, B., Harbor, J., 2017, Urbanization impacts on surface runoff of the contiguous United States. Journal of Environmental Management. 187, 470–481. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2016.11.017
  • Gribenski, N., Jansson, K., Preusser, F., Harbor, J., Stroeven, A.P., Trauerstein, M., Blomdin, R., Heyman, J., Caffee, M., Lifton, N., Zhang, W., 2017. A re-evaluation of MIS 3 glaciation using cosmogenic radionuclide and single grain luminescence ages, Kanas Valley, Chinese Altai. Journal of Quaternary Science . http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jqs.2998
  • Jang, W., Engel, B., Harbor, J., Theller, L., 2017, Intrinsic aquifer vulnerability assessment for sustainable groundwater management using DRASTIC. Water 9, 792. doi: 10.3390/w9100792
  • Nemelka, B., Askeroth, J., and Harbor, J., 2017, Summer Start: Supporting Success for Conditionally Admitted Students in a Summer Bridge Program. Summer Academe , 11, http://dx.doi.org/10.5203/sa.v11i0.599
  • Roemmele, C., Harbor, J., Moore, D., 2017, What graduate students from diverse disciplines learn about teaching from working with middle school teachers and students. International Research in Higher Education, 2(1) p.79-91. doi.org/10.5430/irhe.v2n1p79
  • Zhao, X., Harbor, J., Engel, B., Theller, L., Yu, F., Cao, G., Cui, Y., Tang, W., Zhang, M., 2017, Analysis of food-energy-water nexus based on competitive uses of stream flows of the BeiChuan River in Eastern QingHai-Tibet Plateau, China. Journal of Environmental Progress and Sustainable Energy. DOI: 10.1002/ep.12764
  • Blomdin, R., Stroeven, A. P., Harbor, J., Lifton, N., Heyman, J., Gribenski, N., Petrakov, D., Caffee, M., Ivanov, M., Hättestrand, C., Rogozhina, I., Usubaliev, R., 2016, Evaluating the timing of former glacier expansions in the Tian Shan: a key step towards robust spatial correlations. Quaternary Science Reviews. 153, 78-96. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2016.07.029
  • Gribenski, N., Jansson, K., Lukas, S., Stroeven, A.P., Harbor, J., Blomdin, R., Ivanov, M., Heyman, J., Petrakov, D., Rudoy, A., Clifton, C., Lifton, N., Caffee, M., 2016, Complex patterns of glacier advances during the Late Glacial in the Chagan Uzun Valley, Russian Altai. Quaternary Science Reviews. 149, 228-305 . http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2016.07.032 .
  • Harbor, J. and Nemelka, B., 2016, US Summer Session Strategies in Context: Past, Present, and Future. Summer Academe, 10, http://dx.doi.org/10.5203/sa.v10i0.568
  • Heyman, J., Applegate, P., Blomdin, R., Gribenski, N., Harbor, J., and Stroeven, A., 2016, Boulder height - exposure age relationships from a global glacial 10 Be compilation. Quaternary Geochronology . http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quageo.2016.03.002
  • Li, Y.N., Li, Y.K., Lu, X., Harbor, J. 2016, Geomorphometric Controls on Mountain Glacier Changes since the Little Ice Age in the Eastern Tien Shan, Central Asia. Annals of the Association of American Geographers. 107, 284-98. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/24694452.2016.1248552
  • Li, Y.N., Li, Y.K., Harbor, J., Liu, G., Yi, C., Caffee, M., 2016, Cosmogenic 10 Be constraints on Little Ice Age glacial advances in the eastern Tian Shan, China. Quaternary Science Reviews , 138, 105-118. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2016.02.023
  • Stroeven, A., Hättestrand, C., Kleman, J., Heyman, J., Fabel, D., Fredin, O., Goodfellow, B., Harbor, J., Jansen, J., Olsen, L., Caffee, M., Fink, D., Lundqvist, J., Rosqvist, G., Strömberg, B., Jansson, K., 2016, Deglaciation of Fennoscandia. Quaternary Science Reviews, 147, 91-121. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2015.09.016
  • Zhang, S., Du, H., Harbor, J., 2016, The effect of confining pressure and water content on compressive strength and deformation of ice-rich silty sand. Permafrost and Periglacial Processes. DOI: 10.1002/ppp.1906
  • Zhang, W., Liu, L., Chen, Y., Liu, B., Harbor, J., Cui, Z., Liu, R., Liu, X., Zhao, X., 2016, Late glacial 10 Be ages for glacial landforms in the upper region of the Taibai glaciation in the Qinling Mountain range, China. Journal of Asian Earth Sciences , 115, 383-392.
  • Ebert, K., Axelsson, L., and Harbor, J., 2015, Opportunities and challenges for building alumni networks in Sweden: A case study of Stockholm University. Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management, 37, 252-62. dx.doi.org/10.1080/1360080X.2015.1019117
  • Pope, I., Bowen, D., Harbor, J., Shao, G., Zanotti, L., Burniske, G., 2015, Deforestation of Montane Cloud Forest in the Central Highlands of Guatemala: Contributing Factors and Implications for Sustainability in Q'eqchi' Communities. International Journal of Sustainable Development and World Ecology. dx.doi.org/10.1080/13504509.2014.998738
  • Pope, I., Harbor, J., Zanotti, L., Shao, G., Bowen, D., Burniske, G., 2015, Cloud forest conservation in the Central Highlands of Guatemala hinges on improving soil conservation and intensifying food production. Professional Geographer. dx.doi.org/10.1080/00330124.2015.1006556
  • Stroeven, A., Heyman, J., Fabel, D., Björck , S., Caffee, M., Fredin, O., Harbor, J., 2015, A new Scandinavian reference 10 Be production rate. Quaternary Geochonology , 29, 104-115.
  • Torres-Valcárcel, A.R, Harbor, J., Torres-Valcárcel, A., Gonzalez-Aviles, C., 2015, Historical differences in temperature between urban and non-urban areas in Puerto Rico. International Journal of Climatology, 35, 1648–1661 . http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/joc.4083
  • Wang, J., Cui, H., Harbor, J., Zheng, L., Yao, P., 2015, Mid-MIS3 climate inferred from reconstructing the Dalijia Shan ice cap, north-eastern Tibetan Plateau. Journal of Quaternary Science , 30, 558-68.
  • Weeks, F., Gong, R., Harbor, J., 2015, A longitudinal study of the effectiveness of a K-12 engagement program on graduate student learning outcomes. International Journal of Higher Education. http://dx.doi.org/10.5430/ijhe...
  • Zhao, J.D., Wang, J., Harbor, J., Liu, S., Yin, X., Wu, Y., 2015, Quaternary glaciations and glacial landform evolution in the Tailan River Valley, Tianshan Range, China. Quaternary International, 358, 2-11. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quaint.2014.10.029

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