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Frazer Christie M.A., Ph.D.

Frazer Christie M.A., Ph.D.

Research Associate in Glacier Geophysics

Postdoctoral Research Associate in Glacier Geophysics at the Scott Polar Research Institute and member of Jesus College. Expertise in remote-sensing of ice sheets, with interests in ice-sheet dynamics, mass balance and ice-ocean-atmosphere interactions.



  • October 2021-present: Postdoctoral Associate, Jesus College, Cambridge
  • August 2018-present: Research Associate in Glacier Geophysics, Scott Polar Research Institute, University of Cambridge
  • February 2017-March 2018: Visiting Scholar, Department of Earth & Space Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle


  • 2014-2018: Ph.D. in Glaciology/Earth Observation of the Cryosphere, University of Edinburgh.
  • 2010-2014: MA (Hons.) in Geography, University of Aberdeen

Awards and scholarships

  • Scottish Alliance for Geoscience, Environment & Society (SAGES) award for best publication in field of Atmosphere, Ocean and Climate sciences, 2017/2018.
  • Scottish Alliance for Geoscience, Environment & Society (SAGES) award for best publication in field of Atmosphere, Ocean and Climate sciences, 2016/2017.
  • Professional Development Scholarship (2018), Edinburgh Earth & Environment Doctoral Training Partnership (E3 DTP), National Environmental Research Council, ~£4,500
  • Trans-Antarctic Association Small Grant (2017), Trans-Antarctic Association, £1,500
  • Postdoctoral & Early Career Research Exchange Research Grant (2017), Scottish Alliance for Geoscience, Environment and Society (SAGES), £3,668
  • Ph.D. Studentship (2014), The Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland, ~£63,288
  • Highly Skilled Workforce Scholarship (2014), University of Edinburgh/Scottish Funding Council, £10,500
  • Royal Scottish Geographical Society's (RSGS) Silver Medal (2014). Awarded to the highest achieving Honours Geography student in each of the Scottish universities.


Using a suite of satellite and airborne imaging techniques, ocean and atmosphere model outputs and geophysical data collected in the field, my research aims to unravel the complex ice, ocean and atmosphere interactions responsible for controlling the progressive drawdown of the Antarctic Ice Sheet over the satellite era (~1960–present). With a specific focus on the glaciers and ice-streams draining the West Antarctic and Antarctic Peninsula Ice Sheet regions, my research has to date helped shed light on the vulnerability of these sectors to climate change (and their ultimate contribution to global sea-level), and has recently been cited in several high-profile Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) publications including, most notably, the IPCC's 'Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis' (The Working Group I contribution to the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report).

Currently, my ongoing research aims to examine the glaciological stability of Antarctica's ice shelves, including Larsen C Ice Shelf which, covering approximately 78,500 km2, constitutes the largest floating ice mass located in the Antarctic Peninsula region. This work is funded through the Weddell Sea Expedition 2019, which travelled to the Larsen C Ice Shelf and its surrounds during the 2018/2019 field season, and through the generous award of a three-year postdoctoral research fellowship by the The Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation commencing summer 2020.

Antarctica/Larsen C


  • Dowdeswell, J.A, C.L. Batchelor, B. Dorschel, T.J. Benham, F.D.W. Christie, E.K. Dowdeswell, J.E. Arndt and C. Gebhardt, (2020), Sea-floor and sea-ice conditions in the western Weddell Sea, Antarctica, around the wreck of Sir Ernest Shackleton's Endurance, Antarctic Science, doi:10.1017/S0954102020000103.
  • Christie, F.D.W., Bingham, R.G., Gourmelen, N., Steig, E.J., Bisset, R.R., Pritchard, H., Snow, K., and Tett. S.F.B.: Glacier change along West Antarctica's Marie Byrd Land Sector and links to inter-decadal atmosphere–ocean variability, The Cryosphere, 12, 2461-2479, doi:10.5194/tc-12-2461-2018, 2018.
  • Christie, Frazer D.W., Bingham, Robert G., and Bisset, Rosie R. (2018): Grounding line, ice frontal position and coastal ice masks for the Marie Byrd Land Sector of West Antarctica, 2003-2015. PANGAEA, doi:
  • Christie, F.D.W., R.G. Bingham, N. Gourmelen, S.F.B. Tett, and A. Muto, (2016), Four-decade record of pervasive grounding line retreat along the Bellingshausen margin of West Antarctica, Geophysical Research Letters, 43, 5741–5749, doi:10.1002/2016GL068972.

External activities

  • Member, International Glaciological Society (IGS)
  • Member, American Geophysical Union (AGU)
  • Member, European Geosciences Union (EGU)
  • Member, Association for Geographic Information (AGI)
  • Member, Geological Society's Remote Sensing Group (GRSG)
  • Fellow, Geological Society of London