The ‘Grand Alpine Tour’, undertaken in the summer of 2014, encompassed a six thousand mile journey through some of the Alps’ toughest terrain
Undertaking a grand tour became a popular pastime for the upper classes of British society in the seventeenth century. Often travelling across Europe sometimes for a number of years, the tour was designed to provide a formative experience in which these relatively inexperienced young men and (occasionally) women sought scientific insight, faced new cultures and created art based on the new landscapes in which they found themselves.
Scrolling forward four hundred years, The ‘Grand Alpine Tour’, undertaken in the summer of 2014, encompassed a six thousand mile journey through some of the Alps’ toughest terrain for a team of three British academics. Following in their historical tourists’ footsteps Mark Allan, Dr Mike Lim and Thomas Shaw, all from Northumbria University, looked to explore the magnitude, frequency and spatial distribution of landslides above thinning and retreating glaciers in the region. Using the Society’s extensive historic archive of Alpine based resources the team compared historical data with that of modern times, collecting the latter through new and exciting methods. The team also sought to use both data sets to examine how the Alps have been perceived and portrayed by different cultural groups over time.
The indicators of glacial retreat in Alpine regions
How the processes that create landslides inform wider understanding of Alpine environments
The challenge of living and working in Alpine environments
The factors that continue to draw people to the Alps, as researchers and as tourists
How different groups, both from and visiting the region, perceive the Alpine environment and culture
Comparing how the Alps has been portrayed through history in a visual form
The team consisted of three British academics: Mark Allan, Dr Mike Lim and Thomas Shaw, all from Northumbria University
The Grand Alpine Tour is funded by the Land Rover / RGS-IBG ‘Go Beyond’ Bursary, an annual award given to an expedition that pushes boundaries and encourages a greater interest in Geography.
'From the field' Awards - Inspiring fieldwork supported by the RGS-IBG
Delivered in collaboration with The Goldsmiths' Company, these awards enable geography teachers to work alongside practioners at the cutting edge of geographical research to develop educational resources for the classroom.
By placing a booking, you are permitting us to store and use your (and any other attendees) details in order to fulfil the booking.
We will not use your details for marketing purposes without your explicit consent.
You must be a member holding a valid Society membership to view the content you are trying to access. Please login to continue.
Join us today, Society membership is open to anyone with a passion for geography
Cookies on the RGS website