Investigating the drivers and responses of climatic complexity during the Younger Dryas.

Profile Display Name:

Alice CarterChampion

E-mail Address:

Start Year

2016 (Cohort 3)

Research interests:

I’m interested generally in palaeoclimate and how the rapidity of changes that are seen in the fossil may translate into climatic change in the future. My research skills are fairly broad and span both marine and terrestrial archives. More particularly I have used foraminiferal-based sea surface reconstructions alongside some biomarker work and tephrochronological analyses, as well as processing a number of sites for micro-XRF compositions. This is part of my PhD project and is partnered with more macroscale sedimentology. I’m passionate about climate change in general, in the more recent past as well as in the fossil record.

Hobbies and interests:
PhD Project
PhD Title

Investigating the drivers and responses of climatic complexity during the Younger Dryas.

Research Theme

Past Life and Environments

Primary Supervisor
Primary Institution


Secondary Supervisor
Secondary Institution


Additional supervisor(s)

Adrian Palmer (RHUL),


Investigation of the late Quaternary indicates that glacial terminations typically include abrupt millennial scale climatic changes, thought to play an important role in the mechanics of how deglaciations proceed. These, and past abrupt climate changes represent a severe test for climate models. Improving paleoclimate reconstructions of these intervals will develop our understanding of the mechanisms of glacial terminations and past abrupt events, which can then be used to test and improve climate models, and for future climate prediction. The Younger Dryas (YD) was an abrupt climate reversal during the last deglaciation, resulting in severe conditions across the North Atlantic region. Recent studies have revealed that in certain records the YD can be characterized by different stages (early, mid, late). Overall, this project will develop a systematic and comprehensive synthesis of structure and changes in the climate of the YD in the North Atlantic and Western Europe. This will aid the development of a mechanistic understanding of the evolution of climate through the YD. Conducting this synthesis at such high resolution will represent a significant advance in our understanding of glacial terminations and past abrupt climate change, and the extent to which climate models can simulate these events.

Policy Impact
Background Reading
Grants and awards
  • Quaternary Research Association’s New Workers Research Award – QRA
  • Mead Travel Fund – Department of Geography, UCL
  • INTIMATE conference support – EGU Galileo
  • INQUA congress bursary – INQUA
  • INQUA 2019 Travel Fund – QRA


Conferences and Workshops
  • INTIMATE conference – Gneiw (August 2018). Poster: Investigating the drivers and response of climatic complexity in the North Atlantic region during the Younger Dryas..
  • Cambridge tephra workshop (May 2019).
  • INQUA congress (July 2019). Talk: Subpolar North Atlantic circulation changes during the Younger Dryas and impacts on the cryosphere and atmospheric circulation in north-western Europe.
  • DTP conference (September 2018). Poster

Defra, supervised by Zoe Bond and Laura Eden. 30/04/2018 – 10/08/2018.

DTP Activities
Social Links
University Departmental Website:

Personal Website:




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