Julius Garbe

PhD student


Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK)
T +49 (0)331 288 2673
P.O. Box 60 12 03
14412 Potsdam


PhD Project

My research focuses on the long-term stability behavior and potential critical thresholds—so-called 'tipping points'—of the Antarctic ice sheet under the scope of future global warming. In particular, I investigate how the stability of the Antarctic ice sheet is affected by the influence of interacting tipping elements in the global climate system, such as the Greenland ice sheet or the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation. The aim of my PhD project is to assess the likelihood that a tipping of the Greenland ice sheet influences the tipping potential of the Antarctic ice sheet. Using numerical ice sheet modelling, I want to answer the question, how such a tipping cascade impacts future sea-level contributions from Antarctica.

My work is funded by the Leibniz Association project DominoES – Domino Effects in the Earth System: Can Antarctica tip climate policy?, a joint project by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and the Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences, and the EU's Horizon 2020 project TiPACCs.

Research Interests

  • Ice sheet / ice shelf modelling (co-development of PISM)
  • Antarctic ice sheet stability and future sea-level change
  • Hysteresis behavior and tipping points of the Antarctic ice sheet
  • Climate and socio-economic tipping interactions (DominoES)
  • Earth system resilience (ERAlab)

Peer-Reviewed Journals


  • Garbe, J., Albrecht, T., Levermann, A., Donges, J. F., and Winkelmann, R.
    "The Hysteresis of the Antarctic Ice Sheet"
    Nature, 2020, in press. 
  • Levermann, A., Winkelmann, R., Albrecht, T., Goelzer, H., Golledge, N. R., Greve, R., Huybrechts, P., Jordan, J., Leguy, G., Martin, D., Morlighem, M., Pattyn, F., Pollard, D., Quiquet, A., Rodehacke, C., Seroussi, H., Sutter, J., Zhang, T., Van Breedam, J., Calov, R., DeConto, R., Dumas, C., Garbe, J., Gudmundsson, G. H., Hoffman, M. J., Humbert, A., Kleiner, T., Lipscomb, W. H., Meinshausen, M., Ng, E., Nowicki, S. M. J., Perego, M., Price, S. F., Saito, F., Schlegel, N.-J., Sun, S., and van de Wal, R. S. W.
    "Projecting Antarctica's contribution to future sea level rise from basal ice shelf melt using linear response functions of 16 ice sheet models (LARMIP-2)"
    Earth Syst. Dynam., 11, 35–76, DOI:10.5194/esd-11-35-2020, 2020.

Other Publications


  • Garbe, J.
    "Long-term evolution and critical thresholds of the Antarctic Ice Sheet" (M.Sc. Thesis)
    University of Hamburg, 2017
  • Garbe, J.
    "An overview of explanations for the problem of weak temperature gradients in warm climates in Earth history" (B.Sc. Thesis)
    Humboldt University of Berlin, 2013

Current Projects

  • TiPACCs – Tipping Points in Antarctic Climate Components (Funded by the EU's Horizon 2020, 2019–2023)
  • DominoES – Domino Effects in the Earth System: Can Antarctica tip climate policy? (Funded by the Leibniz Association, 2017–2021)

Associated Member

  • COPAN – Coevolution of human-environment systems in the Anthropocene

Conference Contributions


  • FRISP 2020
    Forum for Research into Ice Shelf Processes
    June 16-25, 2020, online
  • DominoES Workshop on Social Tipping Elements II (co-hosted)
    "Social Tipping Elements relevant to stay within planetary boundaries"
    June 17-19, 2019, GESIS Cologne, Germany
  • DominoES Workshop on Social Tipping Elements I (co-hosted)
    "Social Tipping Elements Decisive for the Future of the Anthropocene"
    June 4-6, 2018, GESIS Cologne, Germany

Scientific Talks

  • J. Garbe, T. Albrecht, A. Levermann, J. F. Donges, R. Winkelmann
    "The hysteresis of the Antarctic Ice Sheet"
    RD1 Science Discussion
    September 2, 2020, PIK Potsdam, Germany
  • J. Garbe
    "Hysteresis Behavior of the Antarctic Ice Sheet"
    RD1 Young Scientist Seminar
    November 14, 2018, PIK Potsdam, Germany
  • J. Garbe, T. Albrecht, J. F. Donges, A. Levermann, R. Winkelmann
    "Hysteresis behaviour of the Antarctic Ice Sheet with the Parallel Ice Sheet Model"
    EGU General Assembly 2018
    April 9, 2018, Vienna, Austria
  • J. Garbe
    "Tipping of the Antarctic Ice Sheet influenced by Greenland ice loss"
    RD1 Young Scientist Seminar
    October 26, 2017, PIK Potsdam, Germany

Educational Talks