David Rounce joined the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at Carnegie Mellon University in Fall 2020. He received his BS in civil engineering in 2010 from Villanova University and his master’s degree in environmental and water resources engineering in 2012 and Ph.D. in civil engineering in 2016 from the University of Texas at Austin. He conducted postdoctoral research in the Glaciers Group at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Rounce’s research seeks to quantify the response of glaciers, water resources, and hazards to climate change to inform adaptation and mitigation efforts at local, regional, and global scales. His work uses computational models informed by remote sensing and grounded in fieldwork to produce actionable information.


2016 Ph.D., Civil Engineering, University of Texas at Austin

2012 MS, Environmental and Water Resources Engineering, University of Texas at Austin

2010 BS, Civil Engineering, Villanova University

Media mentions

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Rounce receives inaugural Firn Award

CEE Assistant Professor David Rounce received the International Glaciology Society’s inaugural Firn Award for his pioneering research on debris-covered glaciers and glacier evolution modeling.

Civil and Environmental Engineering

CEE at COP28: energy justice and glacier projections

At the 28th annual United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28), CEE professors Destenie Nock and David Rounce discussed topics such as energy efficiency, climate mitigation, mountain glaciers, and global temperature rise.

Civil and Environmental Engineering

2023 Freeman Fellowship recognizes Marissa Webber for her exceptional PhD work

Marissa Webber, a current CEE PhD student, has been awarded the 2023 Freeman Fellowship for her outstanding work in climate change adaptation for urban infrastructure, with a focus on mitigating stormwater flooding, which highlights her dedication to sustainable solutions for urban areas.


Rounce on new NASA-funded climate study

CEE’s David Rounce responds to a NASA study that found half of glaciers vanish with 1.5 degrees of warming.

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Khadka awarded IPCC Scholarship

PhD student Mira Khadka has been awarded the IPCC Scholarship for her research on remote sensing and modeling of mountain glaciers. Her work involves leveraging cloud computing to analyze satellite data, leading to valuable insights into glacier melt patterns.

Scott Institute

Three CMU energy projects receive Scott Institute Seed Grants

Three CMU-led energy projects have been awarded seed grants from the Wilton E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation.

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Undergraduate program: building CEE skills across the curriculum

At CEE, we empower our students with the skills to make a real difference in their careers and communities. As students progress through their studies, our program threads approach allows for a deepening of their knowledge, expertise, and practical skills, ensuring that they are equipped to tackle real-world challenges with confidence and competence.

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Hidden ice melt in the Himalaya

A new study reveals that the mass loss of lake-terminating glaciers in the greater Himalaya has been significantly underestimated due to the inability of satellites to see glacier changes occurring underwater, leading to critical implications for the region's future projection of glacier disappearance and water resources.


Rounce quoted on new glacial melt insights

CEE’s David Rounce comments on recent research about Thwaites Glacier, nicknamed the “Doomsday Glacier.” Roughly the size of Florida, this glacier is largely held in place by an ice shelf, and the new study exemplifies how its collapse could drive catastrophic sea level rise.


Rounce’s research on global glacier loss referenced by CNN

Research by CEE’s David Rounce on global glacier loss was referenced in a CNN article. Rounce also praised a new study that examined the potential negative impact glacial lake outbursts could have on many communities. “This is a really nice first pass to understand where we have invested a lot of our time and our research efforts and where we can improve,” Rounce says.

AP News

Rounce’s study predicts massive glacier loss due to climate change

A study led by CEE’s David Rounce used satellite images to predict glacier loss over the next several decades as global temperatures rise. “No matter what, we’re going to lose a lot of the glaciers,” Rounce says. “But we have the ability to make a difference by limiting how many glaciers we lose.”

CMU Engineering

Team projects two out of three glaciers could be lost by 2100

David Rounce led an international effort to produce new projections of glacier mass loss through the century under different emissions scenarios.