Martin Sharp

Taking Young Scientists Under His Wing

This atmospheric sciences professor loves birding, but also has thoughts on Van Morrison and the virtues of bandwagons.


Martin Sharp is a Professor in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at University of Alberta. We asked him everything from what he likes most about being a scientist to what he does for fun in hopes of giving you a better understanding of one of the best minds in Canadian research.

What do you like most about being a scientist?
The opportunities it’s given me to explore the Arctic, Antarctic and High Mountain regions of the world, and the students and colleagues I’ve had the pleasure to do that with (you know who you are, guys!)

What advice would you give young researchers?
Be original, be different, have fun, and only jump on bandwagons before they’ve become bandwagons.

What are you reading right now?
Spoiled for choice this week with new releases from Peter Robinson, Ian Rankin and Michael Connelly (I started with the Robinson!)

What do you like to do for fun?
Hike, bird (especially in the Neotropics), watch Super XV Rugby.

If you could do any profession other than your own what would it be?  
Birding guide.

Aside from things for your survival, what item would you most want to have with you on a deserted island?
The complete works of Van Morrison and the means to listen to them!

Interested in learning more about Dr. Sharp’s work? Check out our blog post on Canadian glacial ice cores.