Suppe will Establish the Center for Tectonics and Tomography
The Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Houston welcomes John Suppe as a Distinguished Professor of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences. Suppe was recruited under the Governor’s University Research Initiative program initiated by Texas Governor Greg Abbott to recruit nationally recognized researchers to Texas institutions of higher education.
Suppe was previously a Distinguished Chair and Research Professor at National Taiwan University and has been a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences since 1995. In the EAS department, Suppe will establish and lead the multidisciplinary Center for Tectonics and Tomography at UH. This center will yield fundamentally new insights into the interaction of past plate motions and the global circulation of Earth's mantle. In the center, Suppe will be assisted by another new hire to EAS, structural geologist and assistant professor Jonny Wu.
Suppe received his B.A. from the University of California, Riverside, in 1965 and his Ph.D. from Yale University in 1969. He joined the Princeton University faculty in 1971 and was chairman of the Department of Geology from 1991 to 1993. He transferred to emeritus status and moved to Taiwan where he became a Distinguished Chair and Research Professor at the National Taiwan University in 2007.
Suppe's research specialties are structural geology and tectonics, and he is best known for his work on "fault-related folding" theories with his two classical papers "Geometry and kinematics of fault-bend folding" and "Geometry and kinematics of fault-propagation folding." Additionally, Suppe is also well known for his extensive work on the formation of mountain belts with examples from California, Taiwan and China.
He has been a visiting professor at the National Taiwan University, the California Institute of Technology, Barcelona University, and Munich University. Furthermore, he was a NASA Guest Investigator for the analysis of the Venus images from the Magellan mission.
Among his awards and honors, Suppe received the Best Publication Award in Structural Geology and Tectonics from the Geological Society of America in 1986 and 1996, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation research prize in 2006, the Wilbur Lucius Cross Medal from the Yale Graduate School in 2007, and the Career Contribution Award in Structural Geology and Tectonics from the Geological Society of America in 2008.
Suppe is also a Christian who has written on the relationship between science and religion in articles like Thoughts on the Epistemology of Christianity in Light of Science.