Thread: Fwd: Invitation to Elite PhD course, November 2013

Started: 2013-09-16 21:54:37
Last activity: 2013-09-16 21:54:37
Topics: Early Careers
Andy Frassetto
2013-09-16 21:54:37
Short course opportunity in Denmark.

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Invitation to Elite PhD course, November 2013
Date: Mon, 16 Sep 2013 18:32:54 +0000
From: Hans Thybo <thybo<at>>
To: Irina Artemieva <irina<at>>

Dear Colleague,

We kindly invite PhD students to attend an ELITE course in Tectonics.

The external teachers are prominent researchers on the subject:

Professors Carol and Seth Stein, Northwestern University, Chicago, USA

Professor Celal Sengör, Istanbul, Turkey.

The course will be held at University of Copenhagen within the framework
of the READY research training programme on 11-15 November 2013.

This is a unique opportunity to learn about tectonics in Earth and
planets; more details in the attachment. The course is financed by the
Faculty of Science of University of Copenhagen through its Elite
programme. External participants should cover their own travel and
accommodation costs. We will assist with finding accommodation at
reasonable cost.

Please inform any prospepctive participant. Registration deadline is 15
October to the organisers: Irina Artemieva (Irina<at> and Hans
Thybo (thybo<at>

Course description: Elite PhD course on Tectonics

This course will provide participants with an overview of the frontiers
of modern tectonics at the highest level. The two lecturers have been
chosen for their world-leading professional standing in the community,
broad knowledge of the topic and related scientific disciplines, and for
their sometimes provocative views that have triggered and stimulated a
number of strong debates in the community. Both lecturers are highly
respected, not only among researchers in tectonics, but broadly among
geoscientists, which is clearly reflected in their publications,
professional distinctions, and invited lectures at leading universities

Earth is the plate tectonics planet - plate tectonics defines the way it
operates. Hence understanding how plate tectonic works on Earth is
crucial to exploring why it differs from the other planets, how it
evolved, and how it works today. The course explores questions including:

. What may cause the differences between Earth
and other terrestrial planets?

. How do plate driving forces manifest
themselves in the evolution of continents and oceans?

. How do large earthquakes occur at plate
boundaries and in the middle of plates?

. What causes the rifting that splits the
continents and may form new oceans?

. How did parts of oceanic crust end up on the
continents as ophiolites - and what is

their significance for our understanding of the continuous Earth evolution?

. How did 400 million year old Variscan
tectonics lead to the existence of a very thin crust despite clear
evidence for significant orogeny (mountain building)?

. Did the lower part of the crust fall off by
delamination as is observed in young tectonic provinces of Western USA?

. How far into Eurasia can we find evidence for
the strong stresses from the collision between India and Eurasia?

. Did they cause the formation of the Baikal
Rift and what is the fate of Tibet?

. How often do earthquakes repeat?

. Will we ever be able to predict earthquakes?

. How well do we understand historical
earthquakes and what can we learn from them?

. How well can we use what we know to assess
earthquake hazards?

These are some of the questions to be addressed in the proposed course.
It will include the following topics:

1. Plate tectonics, relative plate motions,
absolute plate motions and hotspots (SS)

2. Planetary tectonics, comparison between the
Earth , Mars, Mercury and the Moon

(SS and CS).

3. Plate boundaries, Plate boundary zones,
changes in plate motions, and plate interiors (SS)

4. Earthquakes: fundamental concepts & focal
mechanisms, waveform modelling &

source parameters, tectonic geodesy (SS)

5. Rifting processes: causes and controversies
(modern views; CS).

6. Ophiolites - the link between oceans and
continents (CS).

7. Variscan tectonics - implications for long
distance stress transfer and modern

analogues (CS).

8. Long distance stress transfer in modern
settings - how India causes deformation

in Siberia (CS)

9. Earthquake recurrence and hazards at plate
boundaries and in paleoseismicity in "stable interiors"? (SS)

10. Grand challenges and unsolved key tectonic
questions in geochemistry and geophysics. How can integration of methods
bring earth sciences forward, in particular in relation to large scale
tectonics, plate geodynamics, and earthquake hazards. (All)

These questions are at the core of unanswered questions to Earth
sciences. Many of them are highly debated, and competing models have
been proposed.

Based on our recent experience from other PhD courses, the programme
will include one broad topic each day with overall theory in the morning
and case studies in the afternoon. The programme will include lectures,
practicals and daily structured discussion of the scientific challenges
and visions.

The discussion of Grand Challenges to geosciences will provide all
participants with a new understanding that may help provide perspective
in their research. We plan a Grand (Oxfordian) discussion in this
regard, where participants will be divided into teams that will defend
each their point of view on a major scientific debate. We had very good
feed back on this approach after the previous PhD courses.

The course will be held over a period of five days. Successful
completion of the course will give 5 ECTS.

The course will be held on 11-15 November at Geology Section of IGN of
University of Copenhagen. Participation is free, but participants should
arrange their own travel and accommodation.

The number of participants is restricted. We recommend early
registration with a final deadline on 15 October.

Hans Thybo, Professor, Head of Geophysics
Department of Geography and Geology, University of Copenhagen
Oester Voldgade 10, DK-1350 Copenhagen K, Denmark
Phone +45 3532 2452, Fax +45 3532 2501

email thybo<at> <thybo<at>>,

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