Dr. Asfawossen Asrat

Education attended -Ph.D. in Earth & Planetary Sciences, Specialization: Isotope Geochemistry & Igneous Petrology (with “Felicitations”), CNRS-CRPG and University of Nancy I, France (1998-2002);

-MSc in Geochemistry (with Great Distinction), Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia (1995-1997);

-BSc in Geology and Geophysics (with Great Distinction), Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia (1989-1993)

Academic rank Associate Professor, Geochemistry and Petrology
Year of service at AAU -Associate Professor, Isotope Geochemistry & Petrology (March 2007- Present)

-Assistant Professor, Isotope Geochemistry & Petrology (Oct. 2002-March 2007)

-Lecturer (1997-1998)

-Assistant Lecturer (1995-1997)

-Graduate Assistant (1993-1995)

Administrative positions held -Chief Academic Officer for Research (2011-2012)

-Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs (2006-2008)

-Academic Programs Officer (2004-2006)

-Assistant Dean of Faculty of Science (1997-1998)

Awards/recognitions/memberships of international bodies/journals- editorial roles/initiatives etc Awards/Fellowships/Recognition
-Future Leader-2013, Science and Technology in Society forum, Japan;
-Honorary Research Fellow at the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham, UK;
-President’s Gold Medal for Academic Excellence, Good Behaviour and Extracurricular Activity upon completion of Undergraduate Study
Professional Association Activities
-Vice President and Life Member of the Geological Society of Africa (GSAf);
-President and Founding member of the Eastern Africa Quaternary Research Association (EAQUA);
-Member of the Executive Committee of the International Association of Geomorphologists (IAG);
-Founding Fellow of the Ethiopian Academy of Sciences;
-Young Affiliate of the Academy of Sciences for the Developing World (TWAS);
-Member of the Ethiopian Geoscience and Mineral Engineering Association (EGMEA)
Editorial Activities
-Editorial Board Member of the Journals “Geoheritage”, and “Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie (Annals of Geomorphology)”;
-Managing Guest Editor of the CAG24 Special Issue of the Journal of African Earth Sciences
-Reviewer of many papers in many Journals including Journal of African Earth Sciences, Geoheritage, Annals of Geomorphology, Structural Geology, International Journal of Earth Sciences, Quaternary International, etc.
Selected Grants
-NERC-Grant, A 500,000-year environmental record from Chew Bahir, south Ethiopia: testing hypotheses of climate-driven human evolution, innovation, and dispersal (Collaborator) (2013-)
-NSF-Grant, Hominin Sites and Palaeolakes Drilling Project (HSPDP) (Co-PI) (2009-Present)
-AAU-2008 Grant, Investigating the origin of the Blister caves at Fantale-Metahara, main Ethiopian rift using Anisotropy of Magnetic Susceptibility (AMS) technique: Implications for the preservation and geotouristic significance of the biggest Blister caves in the world. (PI) (Nov. 2010 – Present)
-The CRC-806 (Collaborative Research Centre): Our way to Europe: Culture- environment interaction and human mobility in the Late Quaternary; Project A3: Ethiopian lakes and their potential for palaeoenvironmental reconstruction; funded by the Univ. of Cologne, Germany. (Collaborator) (2009 – Present)
-NERC-facility Grant, Early Modern Human migration out of Ethiopia: stalagmite isotopic evidence of a climatic forcing during 130-60 ka (Co-I) (June 2009-June 2010)
-AAU-2008 Grant, Monitoring of cave climate, surface and groundwater geochemistry in the Tigrai and Mechara caves: implications for speleothem palaeoclimate studies (PI) (Oct. 2008-Oct. 2009)
-NERC Standard Grant, Last millennium climate reconstruction in Ethiopia using multiple stalagmite parameters (Co-I) (Sept. 2008-Sept. 2010)
-SIDA-SAREC-AAU-2007 Research Grant, Reconstructing Long Term Climate Variability in Ethiopia: Implication for Future Predication and Environmental Sustainability (PI) (Aug. 2007-Aug. 2008)
-National Science Foundation/START Grant; High-Resolution, Multi-proxy study of speleothems and formation drip waters from Mechara caves, Southeastern Ethiopia: A tool for predicting drought frequency and long term climate variability (PI) (Jan. 2006-Aug. 2007)
-Royal Society (UK) Short Visit Award 2005; Isotope Geochemistry of stalagmites and karstic waters from Mechara, Ethiopia; Visiting Researcher at the University of Birmingham, UK (PI) (June – Sep. 2005)
-SIDA-SAREC-AAU-2005 Research grant; Innovative geochemical approaches in understanding groundwater dynamics along plateau-escarpment-rift transects in Ethiopia (Co-I) (April – Dec. 2005)
-Ethiopian Science and Technology Commission research grant; Implications of Geology to the Geotourism potential of Ethiopia (PI) (2004-2009)
Conferences Participated
-Participated in about 40 International scientific conferences, workshops and field trips held in Austria, Belgium, China, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Ghana, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Norway, Scotland, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, Uganda, United Kingdom, USA.
Conferences Organized
-24th Colloquium of African Geology, 14th Congress of the Geological Society of Africa (GSAf) and 40th Anniversary of the GSAf, 8-14 January 2013 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (Chairman, Science Committee)
-Magmatic Rifting and Active Volcanism Conference, 11-13 January 2012, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (Member, Organizing Committee)
-The 2011 International Association of Geomorphologists (IAG) Regional Conference (IAG-2011), 18-22 February 2011, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (Chairman, Organizing Committee)
-6th International Conference: Climate Change – The Karst Record (KR6), 26 – 29 June 2011, University of Birmingham, UK (Member, Organizing Committee)
-Second Workshop of the East African Quaternary Research Association (EAQUA), 20-25 May 2009, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (Chairman, Organizing Committee)
-Sixth (8-9 November 2008), Fifth (26 October 2007), and Fourth (19–21 December 2003) Ethiopian Geosciences and Mineral Engineering Association Congress, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (Member, Organizing Committee)
-The International Conference on the East African Rift System: Geodynamics, Resources and Environment, June 20-24, 2004, United Nations Conference Centre, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (Member, Organizing Committee)
Guest Lectureship/Public Lectureship
-University of Botswana, Botswana; University of Djibouti, Djibouti; University of Birmingham, UK; University of Cologne, Germany; University of Cagliari, Italy; Universities of Arbaminch, Bahirdar, Hawasa, Ethiopia.
Outreach activities
-Consulted Governmental and Non-Governmental development Local and International Institutions (including the Ministry of Culture and Tourism; Road Construction Companies, Mineral and Petroleum Exploration Companies, UNESCO);
-Contributed to several geology related documentary films (e.g., on volcanoes and the rift, caves, rock-hewn churches, Mountains, geotourism, mega projects, etc.) featured in National and International TV stations.
Address Campus: College of Natural Sciences, 4-killo

Building name: Natural Science Complex

Floor number: 1

Office room no: 280

Office tel.: 251-11-1239462


University email ID: asfawossen.asrat@aau.edu.et

Alternative email ID: asfawossena@gmail.com

Research interests -Geochemistry of Natural Systems: Environmental Geochemistry; Isotope Geochemistry;
-Palaeoclimatology (speleothems, lakes sediments, historical archives) and Climate Change;
-Karst Geomorphology, Hydrogeology, Hydrochemistry;
-Granitoids: Geochemistry, Geochronology, Petrology and Structure;
-Precambrian Geology of Ethiopia and Northeast Africa;
-Geoarchaeology: application of geology to reconstruction of archaeological and palaeoanthropological environments; application of geology to conservation of historical and archaeological sites (geoheritages);
-Geotourism: application of geology to sustainable geological/geographical tourism development;
-Geomorphological mapping and application to Geotechniques (Engineering Geology);
-Environmental Impact Assessment.
Publications in reputable journals A. Climatology-Paleoclimatology, Environment-Paleoenvironment, Speleology

  1. Foerster, V., Junginger, A., Asrat, A., Lamb, H.F., Wennrich, V., Weber, M., Rethemeyer, J., Frank, U., Brown, M.C., Trauth, M.H., Schaebitz, F. (2014) 46,000 years of alternating wet and dry phases on decadal to orbital timescales in the cradle of modern humans: the Chew Bahir project, southern Ethiopia. Climate of the Past, Submitted.
  2. Pleurdeau, D., Hovers, E., Assefa, Z., Asrat, A., Pearson, O., Lam, Y. M. (2014) Cultural Change or Continuity in the Late MSA/Early LSA of southeastern Ethiopia? The site of Goda Buticha, Dire Dawa area. Quaternary International, In press.
  3. Ahmed, M., Anchukaitis, K. J., Asrat, A., Borgaonkar, H. P., et al. (2013) Continental-scale temperature variability during the last two millennia. Nature Geosciences. DOI: 10.1038/NGEO1797.
  4. Nicholson, S.E., Nash,D.J., Chase, B.M., Grab, S. W., Asrat, A.,Lézine, A-M., Shanahan, T. M., Verschuren, D., Umer, M. (2013) Temperature Variability over Africa during the Last 2000 Years. The Holocene, DOI: 10.1177/0959683613483618.
  5. Assefa, Z., Pleurdeau, D., Duquesnoy, F., Hovers, E., Pearson, O., Asrat, A., T/Tsion, C., Lam, Y. M. (2013) Survey and explorations of caves in southeastern Ethiopia: Middle Stone Age and Later Stone Age archaeology and Holocene rock art. Quaternary International, dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quaint.2013.07.132.
  6. Foerster, V., A. Juninger, O. Langkamp, T. Kassa, Asrat, A., M. Umer, H. Lamb, V. Wennrich, J. Rethemeyer, N. Nowaczyk, M. Trauth, F. Schaebitz (2011) Environmental changes in the Chew Bahir Basin, (southern Ethiopia) during the last 45 cal ka BP. Quaternary International, 274: 25-37.
  7. Baker, A., Asrat, A., Leng, M., Thomas, L., Fairchild, I.J., Widmann, M., Dong, B., Van Calsteren, P., Bryant, C. (2010) Decadal-scale Holocene Climate Variability Recorded in an Ethiopian Stalagmite. The Holocene, 20: 827-836.
  8. Gunn, J., Baker, A., Asrat, A. (2009) Caves of Mechara: The millennium expedition to Ethiopia.          National Speleological Society Journal, June 2009: 4-7.
  9. Coltorti, M., Cinque, A., Fubelli, G., Dramis, F., Abebe, B., Asrat, A. (2009) Late Holocene      Environmental Changes and Present Day Geomorphic Processes in the Wugro Catchment (Wollo, Ethiopia). Geog. Fis. Dinam. Quat. 39: 129-134.
  10. Asrat, A., Baker, A., Leng, M., Gunn, J., Umer, M. (2008) Environmental Monitoring in the Mechara caves, Southeastern Ethiopia: Implications for Speleothem Palaeoclimate Studies. International Journal of Speleology, 37: 207-220.
  11. Asrat, A., Baker, A. (2008) Precipitation records of the last century reconstructed from annual growth rate parameters of two Ethiopian stalagmites. PAGES, 16: 22-24.
  12. Kebede, S., Travi, Y., Asrat, A., Tamiru, A., Ayenew, T., Tessema. Z. (2008) Groundwater origin and flow along selected transects in East African rift volcanic aquifers. Hydrogeology Journal, 16: 55-73.
  13. Asrat, A., Baker, A., Umer, M., Moss. J., Leng, M., Van Calstren, P., Smith, C. (2007) A high-resolution multi-proxy stalagmite record from Mechara, Southeastern Ethiopia: Paleohydrological implications for speleothem paleoclimate reconstruction. Journal of Quaternary Science, 22: 53-63.
  14. Baker, A., Asrat, A., Fairchild, I. J., Leng, M. J., Wynn, P. M., Bryant, C., Genty, D., Umer, M. (2007) Analysis of the climate signal contained within 18O and growth rate parameters in two Ethiopian stalagmites. Geochimicha Cosmochimica Acta, 71: 2975-2988.
  15. Blyth, A. J., Asrat, A., Baker, A., Gulliver, P., Leng, M. J., Genty, D. (2007) A new approach to detecting vegetation and land use change using high-resolution lipid biomarker records in stalagmites. Quaternary Research, 68: 314-324.
  16. Baker, A., Asrat, A., Umer, M, (2006) Mechara: a caving paradise in Southeastern Ethiopia. Speleology, 5: 18-20.

B. Geoarchaeology-Geotourism-Geoheritage

  1. Asrat, A., Demissie, M., Mogessie, A. (2012) Geoheritage Conservation in Ethiopia: The case of the Simien Mountains. Quaestiones Geographicae, 31: 7-23.
  2. Asrat, A., Ayallew, Y. (2011) Geological and Geotechnical Properties of the Rock Hewn Churches of Lalibela, Northern Ethiopia. Journal of African Earth Sciences, 59: 61-73.
  3. Asrat, A., Demissie, M., Mogessie, A. (2011) Geological and Geomorphological Setting of Aksum. World Heritage Magazine.
  4. Asrat, A. (2009) The Temple of Yeha: Geo-Environmental Implications on its Site Selection and          Preservation, In: Svein Ege, Harald Aspen, Birhanu Teferra and Shiferaw Bekele (Eds): Proceedings of the 16th International Conference of Ethiopian Studies, Trondheim, Norway, 1-10.
  5. Asrat, A. (2002) The Rock-Hewn churches of Central and Eastern Tigrai: A geological perspective. Geoarchaeology: An International Journal, 17: 649-663.

C. Igneous Petrology, Granitoids, Pre-Cambrian Geology

  1. Phillipots, A., Asrat, A., Ayalew, D., Ayele, A., Yirgu, G (2005) Dabbahu (Ethiopia) First historical eruption on 26 September; ash emission and a pumice dome; Erta Ale (Ethiopia) Agitated lava lake during time of September 2005 earth quake swarm ~ 100 km S. Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network 30 (9), 2-6.
  2. Gleizes, G., Crevon, G., Asrat, A., Barbey, P. (2006) Structure, age and mode of emplacement of the Borderes-Louron pluton (Central Pyrenees, France): International Journal of Earth Sciences, 95: 1039-1052.
  3. Asrat, A., Barbey, P., Ludden, J., Reisberg, L., Gleizes, G., Ayalew, D. (2004) Petrology and isotope geochemistry of the Pan-African Negash pluton, Northern Ethiopia: Mafic-felsic magma interactions during construction of shallow-level calc-alkaline plutons. Journal of Petrology, 45: 1147-1179.
  4. Asrat, A., Barbey, P. (2003) Petrology, geochronology and Sr-Nd isotopic geochemistry of the Konso pluton, South-western Ethiopia: implications for transition from convergence to extension in the Mozambique Belt. International Journal of Earth Sciences, 92: 873-890.
  5. Asrat, A., Gleizes, G., Barbey, P., Ayalew, D., Ludden, J. (2003) Magma emplacement and mafic-felsic magma hybridization: structural evidence from the Pan-African Negash pluton, Northern Ethiopia. Journal of Structural Geology, 25: 1451-1469.
  6. Asrat, A. (2002) Geology, petrology, geochemistry, structure, age and metallogeny of granitoids in the Precambrian terrains of Northern and South-western Ethiopia. Unpublished Ph. D. Thesis. University of Henri Poincare, Nancy I, France, 276p.
  7. Asrat, A., Barbey, P., Gleizes, G. (2001) The Precambrian Geology of Ethiopia: a review. Africa Geosciences Review, 8: 271-288.
  8. Asrat, A. (1997) The Geology and Geochemistry of the Negash Pluton and their Metallogenic Significance, Central Tigrai, Unpubl. M. Sc. Thesis, Addis Ababa University, 159p.
  9. Asrat, A., Valera, P., Peccerillo, A., (1997) Geological Map of the Mekele Outlier, Northern Ethiopia (Precambrian section), North-western Sheet, 1: 100,000.

D. Geomorphology, Land Degradation, Landslides

  1. Abebe, B., Dramis, F., Fubelli, G., Umer, M., Asrat, A. (2009) Landslides in the Ethiopian        highlands and the Rift margins. Journal of African Earth Sciences, 56: 131-138.
  2. Coltorti, M., Pieruccini, P., Berakhi, O., Dramis, F., Asrat, A. (2009) The Geomorphological Map          of Mt. Amba Aradam Southern Slope (Tigray, Ethiopia), Journal of Maps, V2009: 56-65.   10.4113/jom.2009.1043.
  3. Asrat, A. (2004) Implications of Geology to Crop Productivity and drought in Tigrai, Northern Ethiopia: an integrated geological and geomorphologic approach, In: Asrat, A. (Ed.) (2004) Proceedings of the fourth Ethiopian Geosciences and Mineral Engineering Association (EGMEA) Congress, December 2004, Addis Ababa University Press, Addis Ababa, 1-17.
  4. Temesgen, B., Umer, B., Asrat, A., Beraki, O., Ayele, A., Francesco, D., Demissie, M. (1999) Landslide hazard on the slopes of Dabicho ridge, Wondo Guenet area: the case of June 18, 1996 event. SINET: Ethiopian Journal of Science 22, 127-140.

E. Books

  1. Fairchild, I. J., Baker, A., Asrat, A., et a., (2012) Speleothem Science – From Process to Past Environment. Wiley-Blackwell, 432 pp.
  2. Asrat, A., Demissie, M., Mogessie, A. (2009) Geo-tourism in Ethiopia: Yeha, Axum, Wukro, Lalibela. SHAMA Books, Addis Ababa, 186pp.

F. Textbooks

  1. Asrat, A. (2006) Introduction to Physical Geology, Addis Ababa University Press. 277pp.

M. Umer, T. Alemayehu, W. Getaneh, M. Alene,A. Asrat,S. Kebede(2003)Environmental          Science: Textbook for the Course Geol. 100. Addis Ababa University Press, 121p.