Associate Professor

Mette Kusk Gillespie

Field of work

I am a geophysicist with specialty in ground penetrating radar measurements of snow and ice thickness on glaciers. I have a strong background in geophysical and glaciological field studies and have collected data in Antarctica, the Andes, Greenland, Svalbard and Norway.

Today, my professional focus is mainly on Norwegian glaciers. I am a work package leader on a comprehensive research project on Jostedalsbreen Glacier (JOSTICE, and have overseen all radar measurements of snow- and ice thickness on the glacier. In addition, I supervise several student projects investigating glacier mass balance, thickness, dynamics and geohazards on smaller, more local glaciers.

Besides measurements on glacier, I also apply geophysical techniques on mapping of peatlands in order to estimate total carbon content and to further our understanding of peatland management (REPEAT,

I teach courses in applied geophysics, climate change and chemistry.


Courses taught
  • Applied geophysics
  • Climate change (GE483)
  • Natural science 2 (MGUNA301-1)
Research areas
  • Glacier dynamics as measured in geophysical field investigations and modelled by numerical ice flow models
  • Recent changes in climate and associated variations in ice masses and global sea level
  • Glacier hydrology, in particular seasonal changes in glacier drainage systems
  • Glacier surface processes, in particular conditions leading to the development of blue ice areas
Research groups

Selected publications

  • History and future demise of Jostedalsbreen, the largest ice cap in mainland Europe

    Åkesson, Henning, Sjursen, Kamilla Hauknes, Andreassen, Liss Marie, Schuler, Thomas Vikhamar, Dunse, Thorben, Gillespie, Mette Kusk (2024)
  • Glaciers and people around mainland Europe’s largest ice cap – the JOSTICE project

    Åkesson, Henning, Sjursen, Kamilla Hauknes, Andreassen, Liss Marie, Gillespie, Mette Kusk, Huss, Matthias, Schuler, Thomas (2023)
  • Frontal ablation modulated by hydropower regulation: a case study from Austdalsbreen, Western Norway

    Dunse, Thorben, Elvehøy, Hallgeir, Loe, Even, Seier, Gernot, Aberman, Jakob, Gillespie, Mette Kusk (2023)
  • JOSTICE: Natural and societal consequences of climate-forced​ changes of Jostedalsbreen ice cap

    Gillespie, Mette Kusk, Haualand, Kristine Flacké, Villiers, Simon Daniel de (2023)
  • Ice geometry and thermal regime of Lyngmarksbræen Ice Cap, West Greenland

    Gillespie, Mette Kusk, Yde, Jacob Clement, Andresen, Marit Svarstad, Citterio, Michele, Gillespie, Mark Andrew (2023)