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Dr. Tun Jan Young, BS, MPhil, PhD

Dr. Tun Jan Young, BS, MPhil, PhD

Research Associate in Glacier Geophysics

Glaciologist researching the englacial and subglacial processes that modulate glacier flow using a combination of geophysical techniques.



  • 2019 – present: Postdoctoral Research Associate/Junior Research Fellow, Scott Polar Research Institute, University of Cambridge (Darwin College), UK
  • 2018 – 2019: Park Ranger, Taroko National Park (太魯閣國家公園), Taiwan.


  • 2013 – 2017: Ph.D. in Polar Studies, Scott Polar Research Institute, University of Cambridge (St. Edmund's College), UK. Thesis: Investigating fast flow of the Greenland Ice Sheet.
  • 2012 – 2013: M.Phil. (Distinction) in Polar Studies, Scott Polar Research Institute, University of Cambridge (St. Edmund's College), UK. Thesis: Remote sensing of recent changes in permafrost-influenced wetlands.
  • 2008 – 2012: B.S. (Distinction) (Magna cum laude) in Biology with Marine Sciences (B.A. in Music with Clarinet Performance; Minor in Political Science), Duke University (Duke Marine Lab), USA. Thesis: Distribution and abundance of humpback whales in the Western Antarctic Peninsula.


My research focuses on variety of innovative field-based geophysical and geospatial techniques to investigate the dynamics of ice sheets. Currently, the majority of my research focuses on using ice penetrating radars in conjunction with active and passive seismic methods to characterise the englacial and subglacial processes that modulate glacier flow. My current research can be partitioned into the following components:

  • quantifying ice anisotropy and fabric strength using polarimetric radar methods.
  • understanding the controls that fabric mechanics have on rheological evolution.
  • inferring englacial and subglacial properties from radar signal characteristics.
  • characterising the subglacial hydrologic system and its role in rheological modulation.

Previous research areas that I have been involved in also include:

  • using optical televiewer (OpTV) logs and analyses from ice cores to explain the variability in past surface mass balance of coastal Dronning Maud Land, East Antarctica. This work forms part of the Mass2Ant project.
  • developing automated geospatial methods to characterise changes in permafrost and thermokarst-covered (lakes resulting from permafrost melt) landscapes on the Tuktoyaktuk Peninsula, Northwestern Canada.
  • reconstructing past climate using historical temperature data records aboard the HMS Plover, one of the many ships assigned to the Franklin Rescue Mission in the mid-1800s.
  • spatial analysis on foraging ecology and population modelling of endangered seals and whales in Northeastern Canada and the Western Antarctic Peninsula.


​[Publications will load automatically from the University's publications database...]


  • 2022: Lecturer and Supervisor, Geography Tripos, Part 2 - Glaciology, University of Cambridge
  • 2014 - 2016: Demonstrator, Geography Tripos, Part 1B - Intermediate Statistics, University of Cambridge
  • 2013 - 2016: Supervisor and Demonstrator, Geography Tripos, Part 1B - Remote Sensing and the Climate System, University of Cambridge
  • 2012: Postgraduate Teaching and Lab Assistant, ENVIRON 765 - Intermediate Geospatial Analysis for Coastal and Marine Management, Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University

External activities

  • 2017 - present: Member, Meetings Committee, American Geophysical Union.
  • 2022: Organising Committee, Polar Radar Science and Technology Conference, University of Maine / CRREL.
  • 2021 - 2023: Cryosphere Early-career Representative, European Geosciences Union.
  • 2016 - 2018: Ex-Officio of Council (2017 - 2018) and Vice-President of Executive Committee (2016 – 2017), Association of Polar Early Career Scientists .
  • 2013 - 2017: Vice-President (2016 - 2017), President (2014 - 2016), and Webmaster (2013 – 2014), UK Polar Network.
  • 2012 - 2017: Returning Officer (2015 - 2017), Treasurer (2014 - 2015), and Environmental Officer (2012 – 2013), St. Edmund's College CR, University of Cambridge.
  • 2015 - 2017: Scientific Steering Committee (as part of APECS), Arctic Science Summit Week 2017.
  • 2015: Organising Committee, IGS International Symposium on Contemporary Ice-Sheet Dynamics, Cambridge, UK.
  • 2014 - 2016: Steering Committee, UK Arctic and Antarctic Partnership.