An integrated approach toward understanding our planet
Main Sustainable Development Goals for the Department of Earth Sciences.

In studying the system Earth and other planets, the Earth Sciences contribute to answers on social and economic questions that concern: 

  • the natural means of existence (water, energy, raw materials),
  • the terrestrial environment (including remediation of pollutions),
  • natural hazards and disasters (such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and floods),
  • and the use of terrestrial space (specifically near surface and underground space).

Through our work, we contribute in particular to 4 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals as set by the United Nations in 2015.

The Earth Sciences are a multidisciplinary science in which the principles and methods of physics, chemistry, geology, biology, mathematics, and computational sciences are integrated. We specifically develop new scientific hypotheses, methods of data analyses, and experimental and observational techniques that enable us to reconstruct and predict the interactive behaviour of the solid Earth, the biosphere, the hydrosphere, and the atmosphere, on scales ranging from seconds to billions of years, and from nanometers to the entire globe. We honour James Hutton’s early insight that "from what has actually been, we have data for concluding with regard to that which is to happen thereafter".

Our research focus is on 4 major aspects of the natural Earth:


logo NIAS
15 May 2019
Linking day-to-day practice of the earth sciences to the latest philosophical insights
2 May 2019
Life in the seas and oceans is jeopardised by a decline in oxygen. Recovery from low oxygen is extremely slow, writes Caroline Slomp.
10 April 2019
Research has shown that the Earth’s climate was subject to regular changes 2.5 billion years ago.
Arwen Deuss
28 March 2019
Earth scientist Arwen Deuss from Utrecht University visited the Utrechtse Schoolvereniging (USV) to tell about her great discovery.




E.g., 06/21/2019
21 May 2019 10:30 - 11:15
PhD defence of Marijke de Bar
24 May 2019 16:00 - 17:00
A Friday Earth Sciences Talk by Prof. Jerry Dickens
7 June 2019 16:00 - 17:00
A Friday Earth Sciences Talk by Dr Ylona van Dinther