University of Calgary

Stuart Harris

  • Professor Emeritus
  • +1 (403) 210-6126

Currently Teaching

Not currently teaching any courses.


Stuart Harris joined the Geography Department in 1969 following earlier appointments at the University of Kansas, Waterloo Lutheran University and the University of Chicago. He has conducted field research in Iraq, Guyana, China (Kunlun Shan) and the former Soviet Union, and his study of landforms in North America includes local and regional analysis of Arctic and Cordilleran environments.

Current Research:

* Measuring the movement of the West Marmot rock glacier at Jasper to see whether the movement ceases at the lower limit of continuous permafrost. If so, the lower limit of rock glaciers can be used to infer past climatic conditions. * Monitoring the recovery of the permafrost in the margin of a peat plateau after fire at Sheldon Lake, Yukon Territory. * Monitoring air and ground temperatures at a number of sites in Alberta and the Yukon Territory to see how the ground temperatures are related to weather and climate. * Studying how and when the pea clams (Sphaeriidae) recolonized the areas of southern Alberta that were covered by the ice sheets during the last glaciation. * Monitoring the effects of increased population and agriculture on the molluscs of southern Alberta. * Studying how the vascular plant recolonized the formerly glaciated areas of the Canadian Cordillera. * Examining the historical documents to determine the climatic changes that have occurred in the last 1200 years, so as to check the proposed climate models that disagree concerning the climate during this period of time.

Recent Publications

Harris, S.A., 2005. Thermal History of the Arctic Ocean environs adjacent to North America during the last 3.5 Ma and a possible mechanism for the cause of the cold events (major glaciations and permafrost events). Progress in Physical Geography 29: 1-19.

Peng, H., B. Meyer, S. Harris and H.R. Krouse, 2004. A 10-yr record of stable isotope ratios of hydrogen and oxygen in precipitation at Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Tellus 56B: 147-159

Harris, S.A., 2004. Source Areas of North Cordilleran Endemic Plants: Evidence from Sheep and Outpost Mountains, Kluane National Park, Yukon Territory. Erdkunde 58: 62-81.

Harris, S.A., 2003. An Occurrence of the Hawkweed-Leaved Saxifrage, Saxifraga hieraciifolia, in Southern British Columbia, and its Paleobotanical Implications. Canadian Field-Naturalist 117(2): 304-306.

Harris, S.A., 2002. Global Heat Budget, Plate Tectonics and Climatic Change. Geografiska Annaler, 84A (1): 1-9. van Steijn, H., J. Boelhouwers, S.A. Harris, and B. H?tu, 2002. Recent Research on the Nature, Origin and Climatic Relations of Blocky and Stratified Slope Deposits. Progress in Physical Geography 26, 4: 551-575.

Harris, S.A., 2002. Causes and Consequences of Rapid Thermokarst Development in Permafrost or Glacial Terrain, Permafrost and Periglacial Procesess, 13: 237-242.

Harris, S.A.., 2002. Biodiversity of the Vascular Timberline Flora in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta, Canada. In K?rner, Ch and E.M. Spehn (eds),Mountain Biodiversity: A Global Assessment, Parthenon Publishing: 49-57.

Harris, S.A., 2001. Twenty Years of Data on Climate-Permafrost-Acive Layer Variations at the Lower Limit of Alpine Permafrost, Marmot Basin, Jasper National Park, Canada. Geografiska Annaler 83A: 1-11.

Harris, S.A., 2001. Sequence of Glaciations and Permafrost Events: The sequence of glaciations and permafrost events proven to date in the Cordillera of Western North America. In R. Paepe and V. Melnikov (eds.), Permafrost Response on Economic Development, Environmental Security and Natural Resources, Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers: 227-252.

Harris, S.A. and A. Prick, 2000. Conditions of Formation of Stratified Screes, Slims River Valley, Yukon Territory: A Possible Analogue with Some Deposits from Belgium. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms 25: 463-481.

Woudsma, C.G., J.F.N. Jensen and S.A. Harris, 2000. Modelling Permafrost Distribution in the Candian Rocky Mountains: A GIS-based approach. Biuletyn Peryglacjalny, 39: 83-94.

Harris, S.A., 2000. Pliocene and Pleistocene Glaciations and Permafrost Events Proven to Date in the Cordillera of Western North America. Kpuocpepa, IV(1): 24-43 (in Russian).

Harris, S.A., 1999. Heat Transfer Processes at the Lower Limit of Alpine Permafrost, Marmot Basin, Jasper National Park, Canada. Biuletyn Peryglacjalny, 38: 75-93.

Harris, S.A. and G. McDermid, 1998. Frequency of debris flows on the Sheep Mountain fan, Kluane Lake, Yukon Territory. Gebr?der Borntraeger, 0372-8854/98/0159.

Harris, S.A., G. Cheng, X. Zhao and D. Yongqin, 1998. Nature and Dynamics of an Active Block Stream, Kunlun Pass, Qinghai Province, People's Republic of China. Geografiska Annaler 80(A),: 123-133.

Pissart, A., S.A. Harris, and A. Prick, 1998. La Signification Paleoclimatique des Lithalses (Palses Minerales). Biuletyn Peryglacjalny, 37: 141-154.

Harris, S.A., C. Zhijiu and C. Guodong, 1998. Origin of a Bouldery Diamicton, Kunlun Pass, Qinghai-Xizang Plateau, People's Repulic of China: Gelifluction Deposit or Rock Glacier? Earth Surface Processes and Landforms 23: 943-952.

Harris.S.A., 1998. Effects of Vegetation Cover on Soil Heat Flux in the Southern Yukon Territory. Erdkunde, 52(4): 265-285.

Harris, S.A, 1998. A Genetic Classification of the Palsa-Like Mounds in Western Canada. Biuletyn Peryglacjalny (37), 115-130.

Harris, S.A, G. Cheng, X. Zhao, and D. Yongqin, 1998. Nature and Dynamics of an Active Block Stream, Kunlun Pass, Qinghai Province, People's Republic of China. Geografiska Annaler, 80A: 123-133.

Harris, S.A. and D.E. Pedersen, 1998. Thermal Regimes Beneath Coarse Blocky Materials. Permafrost Periglacial Processes, 9: 107-120.

Harris, S.A. and I.H. Schmidt, 1994. Permafrost Aggradation and Peat Accumulation since 1200 years B.P. in Peat Plateaus in Tuchitua, Yukon Territory (Canada). Journal of Paleolimnology 12: 3-17.

Harris, S.A., 1994. Climatic Zonality of Periglacial Landforms in Mountain Areas. Arctic 47(2): 184-192.

Harris, S.A., an C.A. Gustafson, 1993. Debris flow characteristics in an area of continuous permafrost, St. Elias Range, Yukon Territory. Gebr?der Borntraeger, 0372-8854/93/0041.

Harris, S.A., 1992. Cold Air Drainage West of Fort Nelson, British Columbia. Arctic 35(4): 537-541.

Harris, S.A., 1990. Dynamics and Origin of Saline Soils on the Slims River Delta, Kluane National Park, Yukon Territory. Arctic 43(2): 159-175.

Harris, S.A. and C.A. Gustafson, 1988. Retrogressive slumps, debris flows and river valley development in icy, unconsolidated sediments on hills and mountains. Gebr?der Borntraeger, 0372-8854/88/0032-0441.

Harris, S.A., 1985 Evidence for the Nature of the Early Holocene Climate and Paleogeography, High Plains, Alberta, Canada. Arctic and Alpine Research, 17(1): 49-67.

Harris, S.A., and B. Ciccone, 1983. Palaeoecology and Paleogeography Near Cochrane, Alberta, Canada, Just Afer the Last Major High Stand of Glacial Lake Calgary. Palaegeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 41: 175-192.

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