Professor Robert (Bob) White is Professor of Geophysics in the Department of Earth Sciences at Cambridge (since 1989) and Director of the Faraday Institute for Science and Religion. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1994, and a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union in 2016. In 2018 he was awarded a Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society, which is their highest award, in recognition of a lifetime’s achievement in research. He is also a Fellow of the Geological Society, an elected Member of the International Society for Science and Religion and several other professional bodies; he serves on many of their committees. Since 1988 he has been a Fellow of St Edmund’s College, Cambridge, prior to which he was a student and Research Fellow at Emmanuel College, Cambridge.
He leads a research group investigating the Earth’s dynamic crust: in particular the way in which enormous volumes of volcanic rock are produced when continents and oceans rift apart, and the movement of molten rock under active volcanoes. He has organised many overseas fieldwork projects and supervised over 55 PhD students at Cambridge, many of whom are now prominent in academia, industry, government and education. His work at sea has taken him to the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans and his research group is currently investigating the internal structure of volcanoes in Iceland. His scientific work is published in over 350 papers and articles.
Selected Science – Religion Publications
- Alexander, D. and White, R. S. (2004). Beyond Belief: Science, Faith and Ethical Challenges, Lion, Oxford, 219pp.
- White, R. S. (2005). Truth in the geological sciences, in Can We Be Sure About Anything? Science, Faith and Postmodernism (ed. Denis Alexander), Apollos (an imprint of Inter-Varsity Press), Leicester, pp. 187-213.
- White, R. S. (2005). Genesis and Creation, Truth Matters, Reform article (see www.reform.org.uk).
- White, R. S. (2007). The Age of the Earth, Faraday Paper 8 [see also Evangelicals Now, December 2002, 18]
- Spencer, Nick and White, Robert (2007). Christianity, Climate Change and Sustainable Living, SPCK, 245pp. [published in USA as Spencer, Nick, White, Robert and Vroblesky, Virginia, by Hendrickson
- White, Robert S. (editor) (2009) Creation in Crisis: Christian Perspectives on Sustainability, SPCK, 298pp.
- White, R. S. (2012), ‘Take Ten: Scientists and their Religious Beliefs’, in Wisdom, Science and the Scriptures (eds. S. Finnamore & J. Weaver) (Oxford: Regents Park College), pp. 157R10;179.
- Jonathan A. Moo and Robert S. White (2013) Hope in an Age of Despair: The Gospel and the Future of Life on Earth, Inter-Varsity Press: Leicester, 224 pp., ISBN: 978-1844748778
- Colin Bell, Jonathan Chaplin & Robert White (eds) (2013), Living Lightly, Living Faithfully: Religious faiths and the future of sustainability, The Faraday Institute for Science and Religion, Cambridge, ISBN: 978-0-9559074-3-2
- Jonathan A. Moo and Robert S. White (2014) Let Creation Rejoice: Biblical Hope and the Ecological Crisis, Inter-Varsity Press: Illinois, ISBN: 978-0-8308-4052-6
- Robert S White (2014), Who is to Blame? Nature, Disasters and Acts of God, (Oxford: Lion Hudson), 207 pp. ISBN 978-0-85721-4737
- Colin Bell & Robert S. White (eds) (2016) Creation Care and the Gospel: Reconsidering the Mission of the Church, Hendrickson: Peabody, MA, 350pp., ISBN 9781619707252
- Robert White (2016), Erdeben, Vulkane und andere Katasrophen, in Barbara Drossel (ed), Naturwissenschaftler reden von Gott, (Giessen: Brunnen), pp. 135-152.
Selected Scientific Publications
- White, R. and McKenzie, D. (1989). Magmatism at rift zones: The generation of volcanic continental margins and flood basalts. Journal of Geophysical Research, 94, 7685-7729.
- White, R. S., McKenzie, D. and O’Nions, R. K. (1992). Oceanic crustal thickness from seismic measurements and rare earth element inversions. Journal of Geophysical Research, 97, 19,683-19,715.
- Bown, J. W. and White, R. S. (1994). Variation with spreading rate of oceanic crustal thickness and geochemistry. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 121, 435-449.
- White, R. S., Minshull, T. A., Bickle, M. J. & Robinson, C. J. (2001). Melt generation at very slow-spreading oceanic ridges: constraints from geochemical and geophysical data. Journal of Petrology, 42, 1171-1196.
- White, R. S., Smallwood, J. R., Fliedner, M. M., Boslaugh, B., Maresh, J. and Fruehn, J. (2003). Imaging and regional distribution of basalt flows in the Faroe-Shetland Basin. Geophysical Prospecting, 51, 215-231.
- Harrison, A. J. and White, R. S. (2004). Crustal structure of the Taupo Volcanic Zone, New Zealand: stretching and igneous intrusion, Geophysical Research Letters, vol. 31, L13615, doi: 10.129/2004GL019885.2004.
- White, R. S., et al. (2008). Lower-crustal intrusion on the North Atlantic continental margin, Nature, 452, 460–464 plus supplementary information at www.nature.com, doi:10.1038/nature06687
- White, R. S. and Smith, L. K. (2009). Crustal structure of the Hatton and the conjugate east Greenland rifted volcanic continental margins, NE Atlantic, Journal of Geophysical Research, 114, B02305, doi:10.1029/2008JB005856
- White, R. S., Drew, J., Martens, H. R., Key, A. J., Soosalu, H. & Jakobsdóttir, S. S. (2011). Dynamics of dyke intrusion in the mid-crust of Iceland, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 304, 300–312, doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2011.02.038
- Tarasewicz, J., Brandsdóttir, B., Robert S. White, R. S., Hensch, M. & Thorbjarnardóttir, B. (2012). Using microearthquakes to track repeated magma intrusions beneath the Eyjafjallajökull stratovolcano, Iceland, Journal of Geophysical Research, 117, B00C06, doi:10.1029/2011JB008751
- Martens, H. R. & White, R. S. (2013). Triggering of microearthquakes in Iceland by volatiles released from a dyke intrusion, Geophysical Journal International, 194 (3), 1738R10;1754, doi: 10.1093/gji/ggt184
- Green, R.G., White, R.S. & Greenfield, T. (2014). Bookshelf faulting in the north Iceland volcanic rift zone, Nature Geoscience,7, 29R10;33, plus Supplementary Information, doi: 10.1038/NGEO2012
- Green, R. G., Greenfield, T. & White, R. S. (2015). Triggered earthquakes suppressed by an evolving stress shadow from a propagating dyke, Nature Geoscience, 8, 629R10;632, doi: 10.1038/NGEO2491
- Greenfield, T. & White, R. S. (2015). Building Icelandic igneous crust by repeated melt injections, Journal of Geophysical Research, 120, doi: 10.1002/2015JB012009
- Ágústsdóttir, T., Woods, J., Greenfield, T., Green, R. G., White, R. S., Winder, T., Brandsdóttir, B., Steinthórsson, S. & Soosalu, H. (2016). Strike-slip faulting during the 2014 Bárðarbunga-Holuhraun dike Intrusion, central Iceland. Geophysical Research Letters, plus Supplementary Information, 43, 1495R10;1503, doi: 10.1002/2015GL067423
- Hudson, T. S., White, R. S., Greenfield, T., Ágústsdóttir, T., Brisbourne, A. & Green, R. G. (2017). Deep crustal melt plumbing of Bárðarbunga volcano, Iceland, Geophysical Research Letters, 44, doi: 10.1002/2017GL074749