Vladimir Romanovsky is the recipient of the 2011 Usibelli Award for Research

Below is an excerpt from University honors 2011 Usibelli Award recipients:



UAF photo by Todd ParisProfessor Vladimir Romanovsky is the recipient of the 2011 Usibelli Award for Research. Romanovsky is a specialist in permafrost with UAF's Geophysical Institute and the Department of Geology and Geophysics.

Romanovsky is among the world leaders in permafrost research. He is consistently sought out as an expert in who can explain complicated concepts to both the public and media and is a frequent collaborator with colleagues in a variety of disciplines.

He began his career in 1975 at Moscow State University. In 1992, he came to UAF as a research assistant at the Geophysical Institute.

His research and collaborative work monitoring permafrost in northern latitudes has provided an important record of change in the Arctic and subarctic and has added to worldwide understanding of climate change. His work also offers valuable contributions to the state.

“The progressive destabilization of some soils, besides directly documenting change in mean annual air temperature, will have dramatic effects on the man-made infrastructure of the Interior,” wrote geology and geophysics department chairman Bernard Oakley in his nomination letter. “Vlad’s work contributes directly to our ability to plan and effectively remediate effects on roads and buildings that are being compromised by the changing climate and plan future construction to minimize these impacts.”

As part of his research work during the last five years, Romanovsky has mentored 22 students and nine postdoctoral researchers and has been listed on more the $10 million in research grants, many of them with an interdisciplinary focus. He also teaches both graduate and undergraduate courses and incorporates his interdisciplinary philosophy into his teaching and service work.

“We are actively collaborating with biologists, soil scientists, hydrologists, biogeochemists, marine scientists, remote sensing scientists and others to promote the system science approach in developing a better understanding of the Arctic,” Romanovsky said.

Romanovsky holds master’s degrees in mathematics and geophysics and a doctorate in geology from Moscow State University and a doctorate in geophysics from UAF.