Department of Earth, Environmental, and Planetary Sciences

112 A. W. Smith Building
Phone: 216.368.3690; Fax: 216.368.3691
Steven A. Hauck, II, Department Chair

The earth, environmental, and planetary sciences encompass a wide range of inquiries into the physical, chemical, and biological processes that shape the earth and the planets. Application of these inquiries to understanding a planet’s evolution through time is a unique attribute of geological investigations. Knowledge of the past and present reveals the constraints of our environment and serves as a guide for the future.

In recent years, significant advances have been made in the understanding of Earth’s interior, the nature of surface and near-surface processes, the history of the Earth’s climate, the ecology of living and ancient organisms, and the comparative geology of other planets. Geological knowledge is fundamental to resource conservation, land use planning and other environmental concerns.

Department faculty have active research programs to investigate planet formation and evolution, and Earth and environmental history. The department offers degree programs leading to the Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Bachelor of Science (BS) in Geological Sciences, BA in Environmental Geology, BA,  Master of Science (MS), and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Environmental Studies. The Environmental Studies Program is described elsewhere in this bulletin.

Department Faculty

Steven A. Hauck, II, PhD
(Washington University in St. Louis)
Professor and Chair

Ralph P. Harvey, PhD
(University of Pittsburgh)
Planetary geology

Beverly Z. Saylor, PhD
(Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Sedimentary geology

James A. Van Orman, PhD
(Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

Peter J. Whiting, PhD
(University of California, Berkeley)
Professor; Associate Dean, College of Arts and Sciences; Director, Environmental Studies
Geomorphology; surface water hydrology; environmental geology

Adjunct Faculty

Mulugeta Alene Araya, PhD
(University of Turin/University of Genoa)
Adjunct Associate Professor
Structural geology

Jeffrey Balcerski, PhD
(Case Western Reserve University)
Adjunct Assistant Professor

Andrew Dombard, PhD
(Washington University in St. Louis)
Adjunct Associate Professor; University of Illinois-Chicago
Planetary geophysics

Joseph Hannibal, PhD
(Kent State University)
Adjunct Associate Professor; Cleveland Museum of Natural History
Invertebrate paleontology

Nathan Jacobson, PhD
(University of California)
Adjunct Associate Professor

Zhicheng Jing, PhD
(Yale University)
Adjunct Associate Professor

Elham Mohsenian, PhD
(University of Leoben)
Adjunct Assistant Professor

Anne Willem Omta, PhD
(Vrije Universiteit)
Adjunct Assistant Professor

Michael Ryan, PhD
(Univ of Calgary)
Adjunct Associate Professor

David Saja, PhD
(University of Pennsylvania)
Adjunct Assistant Professor


Gerald Matisoff, PhD
(Johns Hopkins University)
Professor Emeritus
Sedimentary and environmental geochemistry

Peter McCall, PhD, JD
(Yale University)
Professor Emeritus
Benthic ecology, paleoecology

Samuel M. Savin, PhD
(California Institute of Technology)
Jesse Earl Hyde Professor Emeritus of Geological Sciences and Dean Emeritus, College of Arts and Sciences
Isotope geochemistry

Visiting Faculty

Onema Adojoh, PhD
(University of Liverpool, United Kingdom)
Visiting Assistant Professor
Geomicropaleontology; environmental and climate change; coastal sedimentology

Anne Omta, PhD
(Vrije Universiteit)
Visiting Assistant Professor
Ocean biogeochemistry; climate dynamics