Willett, Sean, Prof. Dr.

Prof. Dr.  Sean Willett


ETH Zürich

Dep. of Earth Sciences 

Prof. Dr. Sean Willett

Geologisches Institut 

NO  E 33 

Sonneggstrasse 5

8092 Zürich


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Additional information

Curriculum Vitae

Sean Willett has been full Professor at the Institute of Geology at ETH Zurich since August of 2006.

Prof. Willett received Bachelors of Sciences in both Geology and Geophysics in 1982 and his PhD in 1988 from the University of Utah. Following this, he received a Killam post-doctoral fellowship and an NSERC International fellowship to support post-doctoral work at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, Canada. From 1994 to 2006, he worked as an Assistant and Associate Professor, first at the Pennsylvania State University, then at the University of Washington in Seattle. He was elected a member of Academia Europaea in 2015 and became a fellow of the American Geophysical Union in 2016.

Prof. Willett conducts research on physical processes at, and near, the Earths surface. His research is particularly focused on how climatic, erosional and sedimentation processes affect the structure and evolution of mountain belts, and their associated sedimentary basins. Most of his research involves application of numerical models, but also includes field experiments and applications of geochemical tools including thermochronometric dating and cosmogenic isotopes. Problems of interest include the mechanics of mountain-building, the role of erosion on mountain belt structure, tectonic controls on the formation of sedimentary basins, landscape evolution by fluvial and glacial erosion processes and the impact of climate change on erosion and sediment transport. He has published papers on many of the world's active mountain belts including the Himalaya, the Alps, the Andes, Taiwan and the Olympic mountains of the US Pacific northwest.


Year Distinction
2016 Fellow of the American Geophysical Union
2015 Member Academia Europaea

Course Catalogue

Autumn Semester 2017

Number Unit
402-0620-00L Current Topics in Accelerator Mass Spectrometry and Their Applications 
651-3001-00L Dynamic Earth I 
651-4231-00L Basin Analysis 

Research group

Earth Surface Dynamics

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