Earth Sciences Division (ESD) Department of Energy (DOE) Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL)

Earth Sciences Division Staff: Susan Hubbard

Susan Hubbard

Susan Hubbard

Associate Lab Director

Earth and Environmental Sciences Area

Genomes-to-Watershed SFA Lead

Senior Scientist

Building 74, Room 308 (map)

Phone: 510-486-5266, Fax: 510-486-5686

Biographical Summary

Susan S. Hubbard is the Director of the Earth Sciences Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. She is a Senior Scientist, leads the Sustainable Systems SFA., and co-leads NGEE-Arctic and ASCEM. She received her BA in geology, her MS in geophysics, and her PhD in Engineering (UC Berkeley, 1998). She has previously worked at the US Geological Survey and for the Petroleum Industry. Dr. Hubbard sits on several scientific advisory boards and serves as the Associate Director for the Berkeley Water Center. She is a Co-Editor for the Vadose Zone Journal and an Associate Editor for JGR-Biogeosciences. Susan was awarded the Frank Frischknecht Leadership Award by the Near-Surface Geophysical Community in 2009, was the Geological Society of America's  Birdsall Dreiss Distinguished Lecturer in 2010, was selected as a Geological Society of America Fellow in 2011, and was inducted into the University of California Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering Distinguished Alumni Academy in 2014.

Research Interests

Susan’s research focuses on advancing the use of geophysical methods for shallow subsurface characterization and monitoring and the use of integrated datasets to investigate environmental problems. She edited the first book on hydrogeophysics, and has published over 100 papers on this topic. Susan Hubbard’s research can be generally categorized into the following four areas:

  • Hydrogeological researchHydrogeophysical research has focused on the development and testing of estimation methodologies that permit systematic fusion of geophysical and hydrogeological datasets for improved understanding of subsurface hydrogeological properties. read more »
  • Biogeophysical ResearchBiogeophysical and Remediation Monitoring research includes the development and testing of petrophysical models and estimation frameworks that permit the interpretation of time-lapse geophysical signatures in terms of remediation-induced biogeochemical more »
  • permafrost-cablesPermafrost Geophysics  research focuses on characterizing active layer and permafrost variability in vulnerable Arctic ecosystems and on monitoring biogeochemical changes associated with freeze-thaw processes and carbon more »
  • Precision Viticulture ResearchPrecision Viticulture research focuses on integrating remote sensing and ground-based geophysical datasets with soil, plant, and climate-based information to guide the optimal development of new or management of existing vineyards in a manner that honors the natural variability of the more »
  • Environmental Synthesis ResearchEnvironmental Synthesis activities include those that strive to advance research across disciplinary boundaries and scales as needed to tackle 21st Century natural resource more »


  • Professional Certificate in Winemaking and Viticulture, UC Davis, 2009
  • Ph.D. Engineering, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of California at Berkeley, 1998. Dissertation: 'Stochastic Characterization of Hydrogeological Properties using Geophysical Datasets'. University Council on Water Resources Top Dissertation Award in Water Processes.
  • M.S. Geophysics, Dept. of Geological Sciences, VPI&SU, Virginia. Thesis: Integrated seismic reflection data processing and interpretation of Southern Appalachian tectonic history.
  • B.S. Geology, Dept. of Geology, University of California, Santa Barbara. Departmental Highest Honor Award.

Professional Positions

  • 2013+ Director, Earth Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, CA
  • 2010-2013 Deputy Director for Programs, Earth Science Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, CA
  • 2010+ Senior Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, CA
  • 2002-2010 Staff Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, CA.
  • 1998-2002 Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, CA.
  • 1990-1993 Geophysicist, ARCO Oil and Gas Co
  • 1985-1987 Geologist, U.S. Geological Survey, Branch of Seismology.


  • 2013-2014: Distinguished technical communication for the 'BER virtual laboratory:Innovative Framework for Biological and Environmental Grand Challenges', DOE/SC-0156, bestowed by the Society for Technical Communication, Washington DC
  • 2014: Distinguished Alumni Award, UCB Civil and Environmental Engineering 
  • 2013: Outstanding 'Women @ The Lab
  • 2011: GSA Fellow
  • 2010: GSA Birdsall-Dreiss Distinguished Lecturer
  • 2009: Frank Frischknecht Leadership Award, Near Surface Geophysical Society
  • 2009: Top Associate Editor Award, Journal of Hydrology
  • 2008: The Leading Edge of Exploration 'Most Influential Article' Recognition
  • 1998: Dissertation Award in Water Processes, Univ. Council on Water Resources
  • 1994  Jane Lewis Fellowship, UC Berkele
  • 1993  Antonia Fung Memorial Fellowship, UC Berkeley 
  • 1993  Maybelle B. Tucker and John T. Tucker Fellowship, UC Berkeley 
  • 1991  ARCO Co-Worker Achievement Award 
  • 1990  Cooper Award for Appalachian Research Advances, Virginia Tech 
  • 1989  AMOCO Oil Fellowship, Virginia Tech 
  • 1988   ARCO Fellowship, Virginia Tech 
  • 1988   Aubrey E. Orange Award for Excellent scholastic achievement, Virginia Tech 
  • 1988   Chevron Fellowship, Virginia Tech 
  • 1986  Top Geological Sciences Major Award, UC Santa Barbara 
  • 1985  Outstanding Senior in Geological Sciences Chevron Award, UC Santa Barbara 
  • 1984   Outstanding Woman in Petroleum, Ventura County Scholarship
  • 1984   Outstanding Junior in Geological Sciences Union Oil Award, UC Santa Barbara

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