Please find here biographical information. A copy of my CV in the official UMD format is available here.

Bibliographical Narrative

I have been working at the University of Maryland, department of Geology, since 2007. Before that, I was a scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

My hometown is near Metz, in Lorraine, North-East France. I first studied Physical Sciences at the Université Raymond Poincaré (Nancy I), now Université de Lorraine, before entering the Magistère Interuniversitaire de Physics, a multi-institution program hosted at the École Normale Supérieure, in Paris. During this program I obtained a License and then a Maîtrise of Physics from the Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI) and then a D.E.A. (equivalent to a Master) in Geodynamique et Physique de la Terre organized jointly by the École Normale Supérieure and the Université Paris-Sud (Orsay). Do you follow?

The beautiful cathedral of Metz (image taken from the internet a long time ago...)

It is during this time that I became more and more interested in applying physical concepts to geology. To this day, I attempt to generate fairly simple, physics-based models of deformation and melt transport in the Earth and other planets.

During the Magistère, I had the opportunity of conducting several internships, back in Nancy, six months, in Stony Brook University, and four months in the Volcanology laboratory at Orsay.

I then moved to the United States to obtain a PhD in Geophysics at MIT's Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences department. I worked with Maria Zuber on explaining the spacing of faults in different planetary lithospheres. This journey lead me to consider the tectonics of the Central Ocean Basin, ridged plains on Mars and Venus, and more recently Ganymede and Mercury. My interest in the formation of localized shear zones comes from these projects and continues to this day.

For a postdoc, I decided to broaden my discipline by considering melt migration. I joined the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, where I worked under the joint supervision of Greg Hirth and Peter Kelemen. I stayed on as a staff scientist, developing projects on mid-ocean ridge volcanism, and on postseismic deformation, two rather unrelated topics.

Now at Maryland, I have strived to lead a multidisciplinary group, where we discuss planetary sciences, volcanism, tectonics, faulting, and many other topics. Our approach remains one of applying well-understood physical concepts to Earth sciences.

The beautiful town of Verbinia, in Italy where the MYRES II meeting took place

Outside of my academic home, I have served on a number of community initiatives. First, I spent three years on the Science Steering Committee of the Computational Infrastructure in Geodynamics, where I was reporting on the activities of the melt migration working group. I also served on the Steering Committee and then the Executive Committee of RIDGE2000 from 2008 to the end of the program in 2011. I am proud of having organized the second Meeting of Young Researchers in Earth Sciences that took place in Verbania (Italy) in 2006.

I am strongly involved with the American Geophysical Union, the premier scientific organization for my discipline. In particular, I am serving as the secretary of the Study of the Earth's Deep Interior (SEDI) focus group and I am on the ballot to become president-elect of that section.

Don't forget to vote in the 2016 AGU elections!



Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA


Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences

Ph. D., Geophysics

Thesis Title: Localization Instability and the Origin of Regularly-Spaced Faults in Planetary Lithospheres; Defended October 1st, 2001

École Normale Supérieure, Univ., Paris VI, VII, XI, XIII, Paris, France


Magistère Interuniversitaire de Physique

Specializations: Geophysics, Fluid Mechanics

University Paris XI, Orsay, France and École Normale Supérieure, Paris, France


D.E.A. Geodynamics and Physics of the Earth

University Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI), Paris, France


Maîtrise in Physics

Licence in Physics

University Raymond Poincaré (Nancy I), Vandœuvre-lès-Nancy, France


DEUG A, Sciences

Specializations: Physics, Earth sciences



University of Maryland, College Park, MD, Department of Geology

2012-present Associate Professor
2007-2012 Assistant Professor

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution,Woods Hole, MA, Department of Marine Geology and Geophysics

2007 Associate Scientist
2003-2007 Assistant Scientist
2003 Postdoctoral Investigator
2003-2007 Postdoctoral Scholar

École Normale Supérieure, Paris, France

12007 Visiting Professor (one month)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, USA

1996-2001 Research Assistant

University Paris-Sud, Orsay, France

1996 Intern (3 months)

Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY

1995 Intern (6 months)

University Raymond Poincaré (Nancy I), Vandœuvre-lès-Nancy, France

1994 Intern (1 month)


See class details at my Teaching page


University of Maryland, College Park

   GEOL100: Physical Geology
GEOL200: Earth's Fury; Living with earthquakes, volcanoes, and tsunami
GEOL457-GEOL657: Seismology
GEOL412-GEOL612: Geology of Terrestrial Planets
GEOL680: Geodynamics
GEOL789M: Computational Geodynamics
GEOL789R: Lithosphere Geodynamics

MIT-WHOI Joint Program in Oceanography

12.521 Computational Geodynamics Modeling (with Jian Lin)
12.756 Geodynamics seminar: The Early Earth (with Glenn Gaetani)

Graduate Students

2015-presentKristel Izquierdo-González
2015João Magalhães (internship)
2014-presentJoe School (Ph.D. candidate)
2014-presentAlexis Martone (M.S. Candidate)
2013-2016Mark Larson (M.S. 2016)
2011-presentHailong Bai (Ph.D. candidate)
2011-2012Karen Paczkowski (Ph.D. Geophysics 2012, Yale University, Chapter co-supervision)
2010-2015Stephanie Johnston (Ph.D., 2015)
2010-2015Kevin Miller (Ph.D. 2015)
2010-2013Lisa Walsh (Ph.D. Geology 2013, co-advisor)
2010-2011Minjin Baek (incomplete)
2010Michel Woné (internship)
2009-2010Garrett Mitchell (M.S. Geology, 2010)
2008-2009Sinead Eley (incomplete)
2007Matthias Delescluse (PhD chapter co-supervision)
2006-2007Patricia Gregg (PhD chapter co-supervision)
2004-2006Caleb Mills (incomplete)

Undergraduate Students

2015-2016John Milne, B.S. Geology with honors, 2016
2014David Krasner, B.S. Geology, 2015
2013-2014William Junkin, B.S. Geology with honors, 2014
2013Christine Liu, B.S. Geology, 2013
2012-2013Austin Green, B.S. Geology, 2013
2012Chris Weller, B.S. Geology, 2012
2010-2011James Keane, B.S. Geology with honors, 2011
2009-2010Kevin Miller, internship
2009-2011Gerasimos Michalitsianos, B.S. Geology, 2011
2007-2009Garrett Mitchell, B.S. Geology with honors, 2009
2005Piyapa Dejtrakulwong, internship

Postdoctoral Researchers and Research Associates

2014-2016Juan Rodríguez-González, University of Maryland
2013-2014Karen Paczkowski, University of Maryland
2008-2012Laura Hebert, University of Maryland
2004-2006Rowena Lohman, WHOI (co-sponsor)
2003-2004Anne Deschamps, WHOI (project mentor)
2003-2004Adam Soule, WHOI (project mentor)


Please follow this link for a complete list of publications



Workshop organization

2014-2015Venus Geodynamics and Tectonics Workshop, Pasadena, CA.
July 2-6, 2006Second Meeting of Young Researchers in Earth Sciences (MYRES II): Dynamics of the Lithosphere, Verbania (Italy)
September 15-17 2008CIG Workshop on Mathematical and Computational Issues in the Solid Earth Geoscience, Santa Fe, NM
August 17-18, 2006CIG workshop on Magma Dynamics, New York City, NY
2004 (lead), 2008, 2010 (lead), 2011 (lead), 2012, 2013Fall AGU Meeting special sessions

American Geophysical Union

2015-2016Secretary, Study of the Earth's Deep Interior focus group
2014-2015Program Committee (SEDI representative)
2010-2012Book Board of Editors
2008-2010Information Technology Committee

Geological Society of America

2012-2015Editorial Committee (Geology)

Computational Infrastructure for Geodynamics

2015-2016Nomination Committee (Chair, 2015)
2002-presentMember Institution Representative
2006-2009Science Steering Committee


2008-presentMember Institution Representative


2012-presentMember Institution Alternate Representative

European Geophysical Union

2011-2013Tectonics and Structural Geology division programme group
2010Outstanding Young Scientist Award (OYSA) committee for the Tectonics and Structural Geology division


2009-2011Executive Committee
2008-2011Steering Committee