Prof Ben van der Pluijm is the BR Clark Collegiate Professor of Geology and holds appointments in Earth & Environmental Sciences and in Program in the Environment at the University of Michigan. He completed his “kandidaats” and “doctoraal” at the Universities of Leiden and Utrecht, the Netherlands, and dissertation research on Appalachian geology at the University of New Brunswick, Canada; he joined the university in 1985.
His research area is Tectonics and Structural Geology, dealing with the deformation of Earth’s lithosphere on scales ranging from microscope to continent; he uses laboratory methods that include X-ray analysis, electron microscopy, geochronology and rock magnetism. Current topics are seismic faulting, lithospheric architecture and orogenic evolution.
In addition to lower and upper level course offerings, including the interdisciplinary, team-taught Global Change curriculum, his educational interests involve the development and use of modern technologies to enhance students’ learning experiences, including TabletPCs for fieldwork (GeoPad) and handhelds and laptops for large classroom interactivity (LectureTools).
Professor van der Pluijm has served in multiple department, college and university roles, including chair of the President’s Interdisciplinary Teaching Initiative and Senior Counselor to the Provost in charge of the university’s successful completion of the 2010 reaccreditation process. He has served on several (inter)national agency panels, including the US National Science Foundation and the International Ocean Drilling Program, as member of ~dozen editorial boards, and as editor of the leading geosciences journal, GEOLOGY. He has authored more than 170 peer-reviewed articles, edited several book volumes and published two editions of the undergraduate textbook "Earth Structure".
Professor van der Pluijm is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Geological Society of America, and the recipient of several research and teaching awards, including the 2010 University Award for Service and Leadership.