Julie is a postdoctoral researcher in the School of Geography and the Environment, specialising in luminescence dating and reconstructing Quaternary environmental change. She is currently working on the Leverhulme Trust funded project Holocene socio-environmental relationships in the Indus Valley with Professor David Thomas (University of Oxford), Dr Cameron Petrie (University of Cambridge) and Dr Hector Orengo (Catalan Institute of Classical Archaeology). Julie teaches on the Final Honours School options course The Quaternary Period: Natural and human systems and has taught Preliminary Examination and Final Honours School tutorials across a broad range of physical geography topics at St John’s and Brasenose Colleges.
Julie was awarded her PhD from Aberystwyth University in 2013. Her research focused on the luminescence dating of river systems in Pakistan and relating changing fluvial activity to the collapse of the Indus civilisation. Since then, Julie has been a postdoctoral researcher in the School of Geography and the Environment (2013-2014; 2020-present) and a Supernumerary Teaching Fellow at St John’s College (2015-2019).
Julie’s current research interests include palaeoenvironmental reconstruction in low latitude regions, reconstructing socio-environmental relationships in the late Quaternary period, and the development and application of the optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating technique.
Current and recent projects include:
- Reconstructing palaeoenvironmental and palaeohydrological changes using luminescence dating as a chronometer, working on projects in India, Kazakhstan, Egypt, Australia, and Namibia.
- Exploring the impact of palaeoclimatic and palaeoenvironmental change on the Bronze Age Indus Civilisation in India and Pakistan.
- Investigation of the kinetic parameters of quartz luminescence signals.
- Refining and improving the quantification of empirically derived and modelled environmental dose rates in trapped charge dating contexts.
She is author of DRAC: Dose rate and Age Calculator for trapped charge dating and a contributor to the R Package: Luminescence - Comprehensive Luminescence Dating Data Analysis.
- Fenn, K., Durcan, J.A., Thomas, D.S.G. and Banak, A. (2020) A 180 ka record of environmental change at Erdut (Croatia): a new chronology for the loess-palaeosol sequence and its implications for environmental interpretation. Journal of Quaternary Science, 35(4): 582-593.
- Fenn, K., Durcan, J.A., Thomas, D.S.G., Millar, I.L. and Markovic, S.B. (2020) Re-analysis of late Quaternary dust mass accumulation rates in Serbia using new luminescence chronology for loess-palaeosol sequence at Surduk. BOREAS.
- Srivastava, A., Thomas, D.S.G., Durcan, J.A. and Bailey, R.M. (2020) Holocene palaeoenvironmental changes in the Thar Desert: An integrated assessment incorporating new insights from aeolian systems. Quaternary Science Reviews, 233((2020) 106214): 1-10.
- Blinkhorn, J., Ajithprasad, P., Mukherjee, A., Kumar, P., Durcan, J.A. and Roberts, P. (2019) The first directly dated evidence for Palaeolithic occupation on the Indian coast at Sandhav, Kachchh. Quaternary Science Reviews, 224.
- Durcan, J.A. (2019) Luminescence Dating. Reference Module in Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences.
- Durcan, J.A., Thomas, D.S.G., Gupta, S., Pawar, V., Singh, R.N. and Petrie, C.A. (2019) Holocene landscape dynamics in the Ghaggar-Hakra palaeochannel region at the northern edge of the Thar Desert, northwest India. Quaternary International, 501(B): 317-327.
- Kluiving, S.J., Durcan, J.A., Bebermeier, W., Robyn, I., Heyvaert, V.M.A., Howard, A. and Shilito, L-M. (2019) Geoarchaeology: Human adaptation to landscape changes, landscape resilience to human impact and integrating palaeoenvironmental and archaeological records. Quaternary International, 501(B): 269-271.
- Srivastava, A., Durcan, J.A. and Thomas, D.S.G. (2019) Analysis of late Quaternary linear dune development in the Thar Desert, India. Geomorphology, 344: 90-98.
- Srivastava, A., Thomas, D.S.G. and Durcan, J.A. (2019) Holocene dune activity in the Thar Desert, India. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 44(7): 1407-1418.
- Discher, M., Mauz, B., Martin, L., Durcan, J.A., King, G.E., Tsakalos, E., Christodoulakis, J. and Lang, A. (2018) Calculating or simulating the dose rate? A comparison. Radiation Measurements, 120.
- Durcan, J.A. (2018) Assessing the reproducibility of quartz OSL lifetime determinations derived using isothermal decay. Radiation Measurements, 120: 234-240.
- Kreutzer, S., Dietze, M., Burow, C., Fuchs, M.C., Schmidt, C., Fischer, M., Friedrich, J., Mercier, N., Smedley, R.K., Durcan, J.A., King, G.E., and Fuchs, M. (2016) Luminescence: Comprehensive Luminescence Dating Data Analysis. R package version 0.6.4.
- Clift, P.D., Carter, A.C., Giosan, L., Durcan, J.A., Duller, G.A.T., Macklin, M.G., Alizai, A., Tabrez, A.R., Danish, M., VanLaningham, S. and Fuller, D.Q. (2012) U-Pb Zircon dating evidence for a Pleistocene Sarasvati river and capture of the Yamuna River. Geology, 40: 211-214.
- Giosan, L., Clift, P.D., Macklin, M.G., Fuller, D.Q., Constantinescu, S., Durcan, J.A., Stevens, T., Duller, G.A.T., Tabrez, A., Adhikari, R., Gangal, K., Alizai, A., Filip, F., VanLaningham, S. and Syvitski, J.P.M. (2012) Fluvial dynamics and the fate of the Harappan civilisation. PNAS, 109(26): 1688-1694.
- Thomas, D.S.G., Bailey, R.M., Shaw, P.A., Durcan, J.A. and Singarayer, J.S. (2008) Late Quaternary highstands at Lake Chilwa, Malawi: frequency, timing and possible forcing mechanisms in the last 44 ka. Quaternary Science Reviews, 28(5-6): 526-539.