Anna Liljedahl

  • WERC Research Director | Research Associate Professor
  • Water and Environmental Research Center (WERC)
  • University of Alaska Fairbanks
  • PO Box 755860
  • Fairbanks, AK 99775-5860
  • Phone: (907) 474-1951
  • Fax: (907) 474-7041
  • Office: 457 Duckering
  • CV

Research Focus

  • Permafrost Hydrology

I integrate field measurements and computational modeling to better understand hydrology, permafrost and/or glacier interactions and the controls on the Arctic and sub-arctic hydrologic cycle.

Current or Recent Research Projects

2018-2020: Patterns, dynamics and vulnerability of Arctic polygonal ecosystems: From ice-wedge polygon to pan-Arctic landscapes
Arctic System Science Program, National Science Foundation

Principal investigators: Anna Liljedahl (UAF), Chandi Witharana (U. Connecticut), Howard Epstein (U. Virginia). Collaborative investigators are Mikhail Kanevskiy and Torre Jorgenson (UAF) and Ronald Daanen (Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys).

2015-2018: Methane release from thermokarst lakes: Thresholds and feedbacks in the lake to watershed hydrology-permafrost system
National Science Foundation, Arctic System Science Program

Principal Investigator: Anna Liljedahl. Collaborators are Katey Walter Anthony, Vladimir Romanovsky and David Barnes, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, and Ronald Daanen, Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, Alaska Dept. of Natural Resources.

2015-2018: Developing a system model of Arctic glacial-lacustrine sedimentation for investigating past and future climate change
National Science Foundation, Arctic System Science Program

Principal Investigator: Nicholas McKay. Collaborators are Darrell Kaufman, David Fortin, Erik Schiefer, Northern Arizona State University; Michael Loso, Alaska Pacific University, and Matt Nolan, UAF.

Project website: Arctic Glacial Lakes

2014-2017: Collaborative research: Ice regime shifts of Arctic lakes drive interactions and feedbacks with permafrost and climate
National Science Foundation, Arctic System Science Program

Principal Investigator: Chris Arp. Collaborators are Andrew Parsekian, University of Wyoming; Ben Jones, U.S. Geological Survey; Ronald Daanen, Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, Alaska Dept. Natural Resources; and Vladimir Alexeev, UAF.

2013-2016: Fish CAFE: Response of an Arctic freshwater ecosystem to climate and land-use change in the Fish Creek watershed, Beaufort Coastal Plain of Alaska
Arctic Landscape Conservation Cooperative, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Principal Investigator: Chris Arp. Collaborators are Ben Jones, U.S. Geological Survey; Matthew Whittman, Bureau of Land Management; Ronald Daanen, Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, Alaska Dept. Natural Resources; Vladimir Alexeev, UAF.

Project website: FishCAFE

2013-2016: What role do glaciers play in subarctic terrestrial hydrology?
National Science Foundation, Arctic System Science Program

Principal Investigator: Anna Liljedahl. Collaborators are Seth Campbell, Univ. of Maine; Thomas Douglas, Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory; Jing Zhang, North Carolina State Univ.; Regine Hock and Tom Trainor, UAF.

Project website: Jarvis Creek Study

2012-2015: Next Generation Ecosystem Experiments – Arctic
Department of Energy

Principal Investigator: Stan Wullschleger, Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Project website: NGEE-Arctic

2012-2015: Predicting climate impacts and feedbacks in the terrestrial Arctic
Department of Energy

Principal Investigator: Scott Painter, Los Alamos National Laboratory. Collaborators are Cathy Wilson and others at Los Alamos National Laboratory; Larry Hinzman, UAF.

2012-2014: Estimating future flood frequency and magnitude in basins affected by glacier wastage
Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, Pacific Northwest Transportation Consortium and Alaska University Transportation Center

Principal Investigator: Liljedahl. Collaborator: Anthony Arendt, UAF.

Project web page: Jarvis Creek Study

2012-2014: Future glacier and runoff changes in the Susitna drainage basin
Alaska Energy Authority

Principal Investigator: Gabriel Wolken, Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, Alaska Dept. Natural Resources. Collaborator is Regine Hock, UAF.

Installation of weather station at 5000ft elevation in the Susitna River basin, Alaska Range, June 2012.

2012: Monitoring runoff in glaciated watersheds to assess groundwater recharge and flooding risks
National Institute for Water Resources

Principal Investigator: Liljedahl. Collaborator Anthony Arendt, UAF.

Project web page: Jarvis Creek Study

2011-2014: Addressing the impacts of climate change on U.S. Army Alaska with decision support tools developed through field work and modeling

Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program, Department of Defense

Principal Investigator: Thomas Douglas, Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory. Collaborators are Torre Jorgenson, Alaska Ecoscience; Sergei Marchenko, UAF; Charles Downer and Nawa Pradhan, Coastal Hydraulics Laboratory.


  • Umea University, Sweden Earth Science/Physical Geography, M.S. 2005
  • University of Alaska Fairbanks Hydrology, Ph.D., 2011
  • 2016-Present: Research Associate Professor, Water & Environmental Research Center (WERC), Institute of Northern Engineering (INE), UAF
  • 2015-2016: Research Assistant Professor, WERC, INE, UAF
  • 2012-Present: Affiliated Faculty, Glaciers Group, Geophysical Institute, UAF
  • 2011-Present: Associated Faculty, College of Natural Sciences & Mathematics, UAF
  • 2011-2015: Research Assistant Professor, WERC, INE and the International Arctic Research Center (IARC), UAF
  • 2004-2011: Research Assistant, INE and IARC, UAF

Selected Publications

Link to Scholar Citation Page

Raz‐Yaseef, N., M.S. Torn, Y. Wu, D.P. Billesbach, A.K. Liljedahl, T.J. Kneafsey, V.E. Romanovsky, D.R. Cook, and S.D. Wullschleger (2017), Large CO2 and CH4 emissions from polygonal tundra during spring thaw in northern Alaska, Geophys. Rese. Lett., 44(1), 504-513.

Jones, B.M., C.D. Arp, M. S. Whitman, D. Nigro, I. Nitze, J. Beaver, A. Gädeke, C. Zuck, A. Liljedahl, R. Daanen and E. Torvinen  (2017), A lake-centric geospatial database to guide research and inform management decisions in an Arctic watershed in northern Alaska experiencing climate and land-use changes, Ambio, 1-18.

Wainwrigh, H.M, A.K. Liljedahl, B. Dafflon, C. Ulrich, J.E. Peterson, A. Gusmeroli, and S.S. Hubbard (2017), Mapping snow depth within a tundra ecosystem using multiscale observations and Bayesian methods, The Cryosphere, 11, 857-875, doi:10.5194/tc-11-857-2017.

Liljedahl, A.K., J. Boike, R.P. Daanen, A.N. Fedorov, G.V. Frost, G. Grosse, L.D. Hinzman,Y. Iijma, J.C. Jorgenson, N. Matveyeva, M. Necsoiu, M.K. Raynolds, V. Romanovsky, J. Schulla, K.D. Tape, D.A. Walker, C. Wilson, H. Yabuki and D. Zona (2016). Pan-Arctic ice-wedge degradation in warming permafrost and its influence on tundra hydrology, Nature Geoscience 9, 312-318.

Zona, D., B. Gioli, R. Commane, J.O. Lindaas, S.C. Wofsy, C.E. Miller, S.J. Dinardo, S. Dengel, C. Sweeney, A. Karion, R. Y.-W. Chang, J.M. Henderson, P. Murphy, V. Moreaux, A. Liljedahl, J.D. Watts, J.S. Kimball, D.A. Lipson and W.C. Oechel (2016). Cold season emission dominate the Arctic tundra methane budget, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 113(1), 40-45.

Arp, C.D, B.M. Jones, A.K. Liljedahl, K.M. Hinkel and J.A. Welker (2015). Depth, ice thickness, and ice‐out timing cause divergent hydrologic responses among Arctic lakes, Water Resources Research 51(12), 9379-9401.

Atchley, A.L., S.L. Painter, D.R. Harp, E.T. Coon, C.J. Wilson, A.K. Liljedahl and V.E. Romanovsky (2015). Using field observations to inform thermal hydrology models of permafrost dynamics with ATS (v0.83), Geoscientific Model Development 8(9), 2701-2722.

Douglas, T., T. Jorgenson, D. Brown, S. Campbell, C. Hiemstra, S. Saari, K. Bjella and A. Liljedahl (2015). Degrading permafrost mapped with electrical resistivity tomography, airborne imagery and LiDAR, and seasonal thaw measurements, Geophysics 81(1), WA71-WA85.

Floyd, A., A. Prakash, R. Gens, F. Meyer and A. Liljedahl (2014). Applicability of synthetic aperture radar to define river breakup on the Kuparuk River, Northern Alaska, Arctic 67(4), 462-471.

Gangodagamage, C., J. C. Rowland, S. S. Hubbard, S. P. Brumby, A. K. Liljedahl, H. Wainwright, C. J. Wilson, G. L. Altmann, B. Dafflon, J. Peterson, C. Ulrich, C. E. Tweedie and S.D. Wullschleger (2014). Extrapolating active layer thickness measurements across Arctic polygonal terrain using LiDAR and NDVI data sets, Water Resources Research 50(8), 6339-6357.

Zona, D., D.A. Lipson, J.H. Richards, G.K. Phoenix, A.K. Liljedahl, M. Ueyama, C.S. Sturtevant and W.C. Oechel (2014). Delayed responses of an Arctic ecosystem to an extreme summer: impacts on net ecosystem exchange and vegetation functioning, Biogeosciences 11(20), 5877-5888.

Skurikhin, A.N., A. Liljedahl, C. Wilson and J. Rowland (2014). Recursive active contours for hierarchical segmentation of wetlands in high-resolution satellite imagery of Arctic landscapes, In Southwest Symposium of Image Analysis and Interpretations, pp. 137-140.

Liljedahl, A.K, L.D. Hinzman and J. Schulla (2012). Ice-wedge polygon type controls low-gradient watershed-scale hydrology, In Tenth International Conference on Permafrost Vol. 1: International Contributions, Hinkel K. M. (Ed.), The Northern Publisher, Salekhard, Russia, pp 231-236.

Liljedahl, A.K. (2011). The hydrologic regime at sub-arctic and arctic watersheds: present and projected, PhD Dissertation, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK, USA, 244 pp.

Liljedahl, A.K., L.D. Hinzman, Y. Harazono, D. Zona, C. Tweedie, R.D. Hollister, R. Engstrom, and W.C. Oechel (2011). Nonlinear controls on evapotranspiration in arctic coastal wetlands Biogeosciences 8, 3375–3389.

Yi, S., A.D. McGuire, J. Harden, E. Kasischke, K. Manies, L. Hinzman, A. Liljedahl, J. Randerson, H. Liu, V. Romanovsky, S. Marchenko and Y. Kim (2009). Interactions between soil thermal and hydrological dynamics in the response of Alaska ecosystems to fire disturbance, Journal of Geophysical Research 114(G2).

Liljedahl, A., L. Hinzman, R. Busey and K. Yoshikawa (2007). Physical short-term changes after a tussock tundra fire, Seward Peninsula, Alaska, Journal of Geophysical Research 112(F2).


  • Water and Environmental Research Center (WERC)
  • 437 Duckering
  • 306 Tanana Loop
  • PO Box 75 5860
  • Fairbanks, AK 99775-5860, USA