University of Calgary



Shawn Marshall is a glaciologist and climatologist based at the University of Calgary in Canada, where he held a Canada Research Chair in Climate Change from 2007-2017. Dr. Marshall studies glacier-climate processes through a combination of modelling and field studies in the mountain regions of western and Arctic Canada, Iceland, and Greenland.  He is currently seconded to the Government of Canada for a two-year term as the Departmental Science Advisor at Environment and Climate Change Canada (2019-2021). Dr. Marshall also serves as the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC) Cryosphere Working Group representative for Canada (2017-2022), and he sits on the research co-ordinating committee of the Canadian Mountain Network. 

Research Interests

Keywords: Glaciology, Glacier Modelling, Arctic, Greenland, Mountain Weather, Cryosphere-Climate Processes, Climate Downscaling, Paleoclimate

Shawn Marshall's research interests include modelling of glacier and ice sheet response to climate change in mountain and Arctic regions. This includes modelling of glacier dynamics, coupling of glacier and climate models, and downscaling of meteorological fields in mountain regions. Field studies in the Canadian Rockies, Arctic Canada, and Greenland focus on glacier energy balance processes and distributed modelling of glacier mass balance. Mountain weather conditions are notoriously difficult to interpolate or 'downscale' from climate models and reanalyses, and much of his group's research has focused on synoptic meteorological controls on temperature lapse rates. This includes the establishment of the Foothills Climate Array, a meteorological mesonet in the Canadian Rockies, to examine spatial and temporal patterns of temperature and precipitation, their relation to terrain, and the influence of prevailing weather systems on lapse rates and inversion structure.


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