Photo of Jack D. Ives

Jack D. Ives

Adjunct Professor

Degrees:B.A. (Nottingham), Ph.D. (McGill)


Jack Ives received his B.A honours first class, Geography, U of Nottingham, 1953; Ph D. McGill U., Geography (geomorphology) 1956; (married Pauline Angela H. Cordingley, 11 September 1954 and emigrated to Canada [Montreal] same month). Director, McGill Subarctic Research Lab., Schefferville, and Assist. Prof., Dept of Geography, McGill U., 1957-1960; Assist. Director and Director, Geographical Branch, Energy, Mines and Resources, Canada, 1960-67. Director, Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research, U of Colorado, Boulder, CO, USA, 1967-1979 and Full Professor, Geography, 1967-1989. Professor of Mountain Geoecology (Chair of Dept of Geography [1989- 1993] and Prof. Division of Environmental Studies, U of Calif., Davis, [1993-1997]). Chair, International Working Group, UNESCO MAB Programme, Project 6 – 1973-1975. Research Coordinator, United Nations University – Project on Mountain Ecology and Sustainable Development, 1978-2000 (involved fieldwork in Himalaya, N. Thailand, Tibet, Tajikistan, Ecuadorian Andes. Chair, Intntl. Geogr. Union, Commission on Mountain Geoecology, 1972-1980 and 1988-1996); present position – Senior Advisor on Mountain Ecology and Sustainable Development. Official delegate to Rio de Janeiro 1992 Earth Summit (UNCED).

Over 180 publications – scientific papers, books. Founder and Editor (1968-1980) quarterly journal Arctic and Alpine Research. Founder and Editor (1980-2000) quarterly journal Mountain Research and Development. Supervised over 50 Masters and Ph D students and 18 Post-doctoral fellows – from China, Nepal, Bhutan, Thailand, and Ecuador.

Research Interests

  • Mountain geoecology
  • human impacts on mountain environments
  • development
  • Landscape change
  • deforestation, poverty, and gender
  • catastrophic events
  • Pleistocene and Holocene history of the Canadian Eastern Arctic and Iceland

Select Publications

Russian Academy of Science, 2021: Special publication to celebrate 40 years of Russian contribution to UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Project (MAB) ( Edited by Academician Vladimir Kotlyakov and Yuri Badenkov). There are 45 contributors, all Russian except mine which was selected as the lead paper.

2020 Arctic and Alpine Environments: Second edition, Routledge, London and New York. Volume 6, Routledge Library Editions, Volume 6, Ecology.

2016: Ives: Baffin Island: Field Research and High Arctic Adventure: 1961-1967. U of Calgary Press and Arctic Inst of N.A., 234 pp.

2016: Festscrift for a Mountain Advocate – Jack D. Ives, Montologist. Eds. Kumar Mainali and Seth Sicroff, Himalayan Assoc for Advance of Science. 391 pp.

2013 book: Sustainable Mountain Development: Getting the facts right.

Formation of Glacial Lakes in the Hindu Kush-Himalaya and GLOF Risk Assessment, with Shrestha, R.B. and Mool, P. K., International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development, Kathmandu, Nepal. 2010, IN PRESS.

The Land Beyond: A Memoir, University of Alaska Press, March 2010.

Evaluating the growth characteristics of a glacial lake and its degree of danger of outburst flooding: Imja Glacier, Khumbu Himal, Nepal. With Watanabe, T. and Lamsal, D. Norsk Geografisk Tidsskrift, Vol. 63: 255-267, Dec. 2009.

2007: “Skaftafell in Iceland: A thousand years of change”. Ormstunga, Reykjavik, 256 pp (large format).

2007: Icelandic language edition of above.

2006: Ives, second edition, Kathmandu, Himalayan Association for Advancement of Science.

2005 ‘Himalayan misconceptions and distortions: What are the facts?’ Himalayan Journal of Sciences 3(5), 15-24

2004: Ives: Himalayan Perceptions: Environmental change and the well-being of mountain people. Routledge, London and New York, 271 pp.

1997: Messerli, Bruno, and Ives (eds.): Mountains of the World; A Global Priority: A contribution to the Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit, 1992. Parthenon Pub. Group, London and New York, 495 pp.

1989: Ives, and Bruno Messerli: The Himalayan Dilemma: Reconciling development and conservation. Routledge, London and New York, 295 pp.

1988: Ives and David Pitt (eds): Deforestation: Social dynamics in watersheds and mountain ecosystems. Routledge, London and New York, 247 pp.

1974:  Ives and Barry, Roger G., (eds.):  Arctic and Alpine Environments, Methuen, London, 999pp.


  • Royal Geographical Society
  • Royal Canadian Geographical Society
  • Arctic Institute of N.A.
  • Chinese Glaciological Society
  • Central Himalayan Environmental Association
  • IUCN – Commission on Parks and Protected Areas


2007 Menningarverðlaun Hornafjarðar (region of S E Iceland; award for contributions to history and culture)

2007 Knight’s Cross of the Order of the Falcon (Iceland)

2005 Royal Geographical Society Patron’s Medal (United Kingdom)

2002 King Albert I (Belgium) Gold Medal for contributions to mountain research and development

John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellow, 1976-77, held as Guest Prof. at University of Berne, Switzerland

Cited by Governor John Vanderhoef, Colorado, for contributions to environment of Colorado Rocky Mountains, and appointed to Governor’s Scientific Advisory Council

Meetings with World Leaders

His Holiness, John Paul 11, Vatican

Their Majesties, King and Queen of Thailand (special dinner at the Winter Palace)

Mr Deng Xiao-Ping, (Lunch in the Great Hall of the People, Beijing)

Princess Chichibu, Tokyo (private meeting)

Prince Sadruddin Aga Khan (group lunch incl Bruno Messerli, Laurence Hamilton and wives at his
Palace in Switzerland).

Maurice Strong, UN Director General World Summit, Rio de Janeiro (many meetings including a dinner
at home with the Ives family)

Viscount G. Jellico, dinner, RGS, London

David Brower, preeminent US environmentalist (many meetings)