Stanford University
Earth

Discovering Our Planet

Pushing the boundaries of what we know about Earth

At Stanford Earth scientists and students push the boundaries of knowledge about Earth's evolution and how it functions: from its interior dynamics and ocean processes to characteristics of the atmosphere, and more. Their research covers a breadth of areas such as paleontology, biogeochemistry, and the structure and movement of Earth's crust. That work is essential to our understanding of both ancient and modern concerns from medieval plagues to earthquake dynamics, climate change, and the occurrence of natural resources. 

Are we in a "sixth mass extinction"?

Stanford paleontologist Jonathan Payne puts modern extinction in context by comparing it with Earth's five previous mass extinctions. Watch.

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Navigating the guts of an ancient submarine canyon

Geological Sciences professors Stephan Graham and Don Lowe take us into an exposed submarine canyon at Point Lobos, CA, to understand how rock sediments  inform oil resource exploration. Watch.

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Meet some of the faculty who discover our planet

Paula Welander
Paula Welander

Assistant Professor of Earth System Science

Page Chamberlain
Page Chamberlain

Professor of Earth System Science

Karen Casciotti
Karen Casciotti

Associate Professor of Earth System Science

George Hilley
George Hilley

Associate Professor of Geological Sciences

anne dekas
Anne Dekas

Assistant Professor of Earth Systems

Elizabeth Miller
Elizabeth Miller

Professor of Geological Sciences

Related research news

Evolution of symbiosis

DNA data from more than 3,300 species reveals how lichens stayed together, split up, swapped partners and changed form over 250 million years. 

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Evolutionary theory of economic decisions

When survival over generations is the end game, researchers say it makes sense to undervalue long shots that could be profitable and overestimate the likelihood of rare bad outcomes.

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Bay Area coastal flooding triggers regionwide commute disruptions

Researchers have modeled how coastal flooding will impact commutes in the Bay Area over the next 20 years. Regions with sparse road networks will have some of the worst commute delays, regardless of their distances from the coast.

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Exploring the sustainability of the Indian sugar industry

Researchers analyzed the interconnected food, water and energy challenges that arise from the sugar industry in India – the second-largest producer of sugar worldwide – and how the political economy drives those challenges.

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