Paula Reimer


  • Room 0G.010 - 42 Fitzwilliam Street

    United Kingdom

Willing to speak to media

1990 …2019
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Personal profile


I am interested in all aspects of radiocarbon dating and applications in calibration, archaeology, carbon cycling, ecology and palaeoenviornment.


Research Statement

My research interests are primarily focused on carbon, in both modern and past environments, as a tracer of geochemical processes, as a key component in climate variability and  as a chronological tool. Much of my work focuses on extending and refining the internationally ratified radiocarbon calibration curves which are used by geoscientists and archaeologists to correct radiocarbon ages for the variability of atmospheric or marine 14C in the past. These datasets also provide information on solar variability, ocean circulation changes and geomagnetic field changes over the past 50,000 years. I chair the IntCal Working Group which has been responsible for producing the calibration curves from independently dated material such as tree-rings and corals since 2002 although I have been closely involved with the work from 1986.

As a corollary to radiocarbon calibration, I am interested in both marine and freshwater radiocarbon reservoir offsets which effect radiocarbon ages and calibration of samples from these environments or from humans or animals with a marine dietary component.My investigations also inform about the nature of ocean upwelling and circulation changes over time. I am also interested in the use of carbon and nitrogen stable isotopes in past dietary studies as a tool to answer questions about human and animal diet in the past and as a way of understanding radiocarbon reservoir effects on the accuracy dating humans and animals subsisting on marine or freshwater resources.

I am also involved in research combining radiocarbon and stable isotopes in understanding the source and fate of carbon in the environment whether terrestrial carbon storage in sediment, efflux to the atmosphere or utilisation in the foodweb of lakes and streams.


 I am no longer teaching undergraduate or MSc modules.


In 2013 I was awarded the Lyell Medal by the Geological Society of London for contributions towards the development of radiocarbon dating and calibration and carbon cycling in the environment. 

I was elected as a member of the Royal Irish Academy in 2014 and asked to participate as a convener for selection of members for the Geosciences and Geographical Sciences committee and become a member.

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Projects 2006 2018

Research Output 1990 2019


Cave bear occupation in Schwabenreith Cave, Austria, during the early last glacial: constraints from 230Th/U-dated speleothems

Spötl, C., Scholz, D., Rabeder, G. & Reimer, P. J., 01 Aug 2019, In : Journal of Quaternary Science. 34, 6, p. 424-432 9 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Last Glacial

Character, rates, and environmental significance of holocene dust accumulation in archaeological hilltop ruins in the southern levant

Lucke, B., Roskin, J., Vanselow, K. A., Bruins, H. J., Abu-Jaber, N., Deckers, K., Lindauer, S., Porat, N., Reimer, P. J., Bäumler, R., Erickson-Gini, T. & Kouki, P., 24 Apr 2019, In : Geosciences (Switzerland). 9, 4, 60 p., 190.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access

High-resolution geochemical record of environmental changes during MIS 3 from the northern Alps (Nesseltalgraben, Germany)

Mayr, C., Stojakowits, P., Lempe, B., Blaauw, M., Diersche, V., Grohganz, M., Correa, M. L., Ohlendorf, C., Reimer, P. & Zolitschka, B., 15 Aug 2019, In : Quaternary Science Reviews. 218, p. 122-136

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Alps region
marine isotope stage
environmental change

Orbital controls on Namib Desert hydroclimate over the past 50,000 years

Chase, B. M., Niedermeyer, E. M., Boom, A., Carr, A. S., Chevalier, M., He, F., Meadows, M. E., Ogle, N. & Reimer, P. J., 26 Jul 2019, In : Geology. 5 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

climate change


2013 Lyell Medal

Paula Reimer (Recipient), 2013

Prize: National/international honour

radiocarbon dating

Elected member Royal Irish Academy

Paula Reimer (Recipient), 2014

Prize: Election to learned society

Activities 1996 2019

An overview of the IntCal19 radiocarbon calibration curve

Paula Reimer (Advisor)
29 Jul 2019

Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation

XX INQUA Congress

Paula Reimer (Organiser)
30 Jul 2019

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference

XX INQUA Congress

Paula Reimer (Organiser)
29 Jul 2019

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference

A preview of the IntCal19 radiocarbon calibration curves

Paula Reimer (Advisor)
20 Jun 2018

Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk

Baikal Archaeological Project (External organisation)

Paula Reimer (Advisor)
31 Oct 2018 → …

Activity: Membership typesMembership of peer review panel or committee


Conservation of Maerl (Calcareous red seaweed) in Europe

Daryl Birkett (Participant), Christine Maggs (Participant), Matthew Dring (Participant), Charmaine Blake (Participant), Sian Wilson (Participant), Paula Reimer (Participant), Mark Johnson (Participant)

Impact: Public Policy Impact, Environmental Impact