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Department of Geography


Ms Ciara Greaves BSc, MPhil

PhD student

Climate and Societal Impacts of Common Era Volcanism



  • 2016 – 2019: BSc in Geography. University of Manchester, UK.
  • 2020 – 2021: MPhil in Holocene Climates. University of Cambridge, Darwin College, UK.
  • 2021-present: PhD student in Geography. University of Cambridge, Christ’s College, UK. NERC Doctoral Training Partnership with partnered funding from Christ’s College.


  • 2021 – 2025: Cambridge Climate Life and Earth (C-CLEAR) NERC DTP studentship
  • 2021 – 2025: Christ’s College Warwick Postgraduate Studentship


My PhD research investigates the potential of ‘blue rings’, a new climate proxy, to reconstruct extreme weather following large volcanic eruptions of the last millennium. My research aims to improve understanding of how these events affected Earth’s climate spatially and temporally, as well as how past societies were impacted.


  • Greaves, C., Crivellaro, A., Piermattei, A., Krusic, P.J., Oppenheimer, C., Potapov, A., Hordo, M., Metslaid, S., Kask R., Kangur, A., Büntgen, U. (2022). Remarkably high blue ring occurrence in Estonian Scots pines in 1976 reveals wood anatomical evidence of extreme autumnal cooling. Trees. doi:10.1007/s00468-022-02366-1
  • Büntgen, U., Crivellaro, A., Arseneault, D., Baillie, M., Barclay, D., Bernabei, M., Bontadi, J., Boswijk, G., Brown, D., Christie, D.A., Churakova, O.V., Cook, E.R., D’Arrigo, R., Davi, N., Esper, J., Fonti, P., Greaves, C., Hantemirov, R.M., Hughes, M.K., Kirdyanov, A.V., Krusic, P.J., Le Quesne, C., Ljungqvist, F.C., McCormick, M., Myglan, V.S., Nicolussi, K., Oppenheimer, C., Palmer, J., Qin, C., Reinig, F., Salzer, M., Stoffel, M., Torbenson, M., Trnka, M., Villalba, R., Wiesenberg, N., Wiles, G., Yang, B. and Piermattei, A. (2022). Global wood anatomical perspective on the onset of the Late Antique Little Ice Age (LALIA) in the mid-6th century CE. Chinese Science Bulletin, v. 67, p.2336-2344. doi:10.1016/j.scib.2022.10.019


  • MPhil Holocene Climates
  • Part II Dissertation