Mining the written history of medieval Ireland for connections to human violence and climate change.

Timespan: 
2012-2014
Principal Investigator: 

Francis Ludlow is a Postdoctoral Fellow with the Yale Climate & Energy Institute, where he works with Prof. Benedict Kiernan of the Department of History and Prof. Michael R. Dove of the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, on a project entitled Climate as Catalyst in 1,224 Years of Violence and Conflict in Ireland, 425-1649 CE. From 2013-2014 Francis held the position of Carson Fellow at the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society of the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU Munich). From 2011 to 2013 he was a Ziff Environmental Fellow with the Harvard University Center for the Environment where he worked with Prof. Michael McCormick of the Department of History and the Initiative for the Science of the Human Past at Harvard on a project entitled Unifying High-Resolution Records of Environmental and Societal Stresses for Ireland, 425-1650 CE, combining Irish annalistic and tree-ring records with ice-core records. From 2012 to 2013 he was a Research Affiliate of the Harvard University Center for Geographic Analysis, and from 2011 to 2013 held the position of Research Associate with the Trinity Long Room Hub. From 2009 to 2011 Francis was a pre and postdoctoral Research Fellow with the Trinity Long Room Hub, and from 2007 to 2011 lectured in the Department of Geography, School of Natural Sciences, Trinity College Dublin. He has also lectured in Dublin City University and St. Patrick’s College, Drumcondra, Dublin, and guest lectured in the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. From 2009 to 2011 he was Treasurer of the Irish Quaternary Association. In 2006, he was a Visiting Scholar with the School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology, Queen’s University, Belfast. There he worked with Prof. Mike Baillie and Mr. David Brown on a comparison of historic weather extremes and the Irish oak dendrochronological record. Francis has also worked in University College Cork (2008-2009) with Dr. Paul Leahy and Prof. Ger Kiely as part of the Extreme Weather, Climate and Natural Disasters in Ireland project, funded by the Environmental Protection Agency, Ireland. Francis obtained a B.A. in Geography and Economics from Trinity College Dublin in 2003, a Postgraduate Diploma in Statistics from Trinity College Dublin in 2005, and a PhD in Geography from Trinity College Dublin in 2011. His PhD thesis is entitled The Utility of the Irish Annals as a Source for the Reconstruction of Climate.