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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. Current and recent projects in the U.S. and China.
  • 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; Assessing impacts of a workshop on the scholarship of teaching and learning; Exploring the impact of culturally relevant geoscience education on diverse learners.

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

  • 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 in to Purdue University’s “Book of Great Teachers”, 2008

Professional Experience

  • Currently serve as Associate Editor for the journal Anthropocene
  • Author / Co-Author of >100 journal publications and PI / Co-PI of >50 external grants for research and teaching
  • Previous administrative appointments at Purdue University have included 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


  • 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
  • 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
  • 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.v4n3p188
  • 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
  • Blomdin, R., Heyman, J., Stroeven, A., Hättestrand, C., Harbor, J., Gribenski, N., Jansson, K., Petrakov, D., Ivanov, M., Orkhonselenge, A., Rudoy, A., Walther, M., 2014, Glacial geomorphology of the Altai and western Sayan Mountains, Central Asia. Journal of Maps. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17445647.2014.992177
  • Jansen, J., Codilean, A., Stroeven, A., Fabel, D., Hättestrand, C., Kleman, J., Harbor, J., Heyman, J., Kubik, P. and Xu, S., 2014, Rivers under ice: fluvial erosion beneath decaying ice sheets.  Nature Communications, 5. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/ncomms4815
  • Li, Y., Liu, G., Chen, Y., Li, Y.N., Harbor, J., Stroeven, A., Caffee, M., Chang, M. Li, C., Cui, Z., 2014, Timing and extent of Quaternary glaciations in the Tianger Range, eastern Tian Shan, China, investigated using 10 Be surface exposure dating.  Quaternary Science Reviews, 98, 7-23 . http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2014.05.009
  • Li, Y., Li, D., Liu, G., Harbor, J., Caffee, A., Stroeven, A., 2014, Patterns of landscape evolution on the central and northern Tibetan Plateau investigated using in-situ produced 10 Be concentrations from river sediments. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 398, 77–89. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.epsl.2014.04.045
  • Lifton, N., Beel, C., Hättestrand, C., Kassab, C., Rogozhina, I., Heermance, R., Oskin, M., Burbank, D., Blomdin, R., Gribenski, N., Caffee, M., Goehring, B., Heyman, J., Ivanov, M., Li, Y.N., Li, Y.K., Petrakov, D., Usubaliev, R., Codilean, A., Chen, Y., Harbor, J., Stroeven, P., 2014, Constraints on the late Quaternary glacial history of the Inylchek and Sary-Dzaz valleys from in situ cosmogenic 10 Be and 26 Al, eastern Kyrgyz Tian Shan.  Quaternary Science Reviews, 101, 77-90 . http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2014.06.032
  • Park, Y., Engel, B., Harbor, J., 2014, A web-based model to estimate the impact of best management practices. Water, 6, 455-471.  http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/w6030455
  • Pei, W., Zhang, M., Lai, Y., Jin, L., Harbor, J., 2014, Thermal stability analysis of crushed-rock embankments on a slope in permafrost regions.  Cold Regions Science and Technology. 106-7, 175-82. DOI: 10.1016/j.coldregions.2014.07.005
  • Torres-Valcárcel, A., Harbor, J., Gonzalez-Aviles, C., Torres-Valcárcel, A., 2014, Impacts of urban development on precipitation in the tropical maritime climate of Puerto Rico. Climate, 2, 47-77. doi:10.3390/cli2020047
  • Weeks, F. and Harbor, J., 2014, Assessing the impact of a K-12 engagement program on graduate learning outcomes for communicating with diverse audiences, pedagogy, and community engagement.  International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 8(2) #16.  http://digitalcommons.georgiasouthern.edu/ij-sotl/vol8/iss2/16
  • Zhang, W., Liu, B., Li, Y., Feng, J., Harbor, J. M., Liu, L., Wang, Z. and Li, D., 2014, Late Pleistocene Glaciations on Qianhu Mountain, Northwest Yunnan Province, China. Geografiska Annaler: Series A, Physical Geography, 96, 417-29. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/geoa.12041
  • Fu. P., Stroeven, A., Harbor J., Hättestrand, C., Heyman, J., Caffee, M., and Zhou, L., 2013, Paleoglaciation of Shaluli Shan, Tibetan Plateau. Quaternary Science Reviews, 64, p.121-135, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2012.12.009
  • Fu, P., Stroeven, A., Harbor J., Hättestrand, C., Heyman, J., and Zhou, L., 2013, A complex glacial landform assemblage indicating polythermal ice cap glaciation in Shaluli Shan, southeastern Tibetan Plateau.  Geomorphology, 182, p.66–78. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.geomorph.2012.10.030
  • Heyman, J., Heyman, B., Fickert, T., Harbor, J., 2013, Paleo-climate of the central European uplands during the last glacial maximum based on glacier mass balance modeling. Quaternary Research, 79, p.49-54. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.yqres.2012.09.005
  • Kassab, C. and Harbor, J., 2013, Alternative coordinate systems for analyzing cross-section shapes of glaciated valleys: a case study from the Dalijia mountains, China.  Physical Geography , 34, p.108-123. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02723646.2013.787580
  • Kassab, C., Wang, J. and Harbor, J., 2013, Glacial geomorphology of the Dalijia Shan region, northeastern Tibetan Plateau. Journal of Maps, 9, p.98-105. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17445647.2012.754729
  • Ruggiero, D. and Harbor, J., 2013, Using writing assignments with calibrated peer review to increase engagement and improve learning in an undergraduate environmental science course.  International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 7(2) p.1-13. http://digitalcommons.georgiasouthern.edu/ij-sotl/vol7/iss2/21
  • Wang, J., Kassab, C., Harbor, J., Caffee, M., Cui, H. and Zhang, G., 2013, Terrestrial cosmogenic nuclide constraints on late quaternary glacial chronology on the Dalijia Shan, northeastern Tibetan Plateau. Quaternary Research, 79, p.439-451 . 10.1016/j.yqres.2013.01.004
  • Zhang, M., Lai, Y., Dong, Y., Jin, L., Pei, W., and Harbor, J., 2013, Laboratory investigation of the heat transfer characteristics of a two-phase closed thermosyphon.  Cold Regions Science and Technology, 95, p.67-73. 10.1016/j.coldregions.2013.08.006
  • Zhao, J., Yin, X., Harbor, J., Lai, Z., Liu, S., and Li, Z., 2013, Quaternary glacial chronology of the Kanas River valley, Altai Mountains, China.  Quaternary International, 311, p.44-53. 10.1016/j.quaint.2013.07.047

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