Cryospheric Sciences

The more the merrier – Interview with the two new Cryo ECS representatives

A women on the left in front of a glacier face and a women on the right on front of a city landscape.

After two years of great work, our current cryosphere division ECS representative TJ Young is passing on the task of representing the needs and wishes of the cryosphere division early career scientists (ECS). As they make up a majority of the EGU members, their representatives make sure to see their needs and voices heard. You might know that the EGU ECS community is represented by two union-level representatives (reps) and usually one rep per division. This time, we won’t have one but two great Cryo ECS reps Ann-Sofie Zinck and Lu Zhou. As we saw with chief editors that recently enlarged their team from two to three, a shared load is an easier load. Let’s read and get to know your new reps!

Blog Team: Could you please tell us a little bit about yourself as a person and of course as a cryosphere-lover?

Ann-Sofie: I am a PhD candidate at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands (and formerly also at IMAU, Utrecht University) where I study thinning and basal melting of the ice shelves in Antarctica. My PhD project is a part of the HiRISE consortium where we use various high-resolution approaches for ice-shelf instability. My love for the Cryosphere started as a little child skiing the Norwegian mountains and has been strengthened by many more trips to the various corners of our Cryosphere. Antarctica, however, is still on my list of places I would love to go.

Lu: I’m a postdoc working at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden.  I am particularly interested in Arctic and Antarctic sea ice and its mass balance. I want to help our understanding of the Cryosphere and its role in the global climate system. As a Cryo-lover, I am enthusiastic about sharing knowledge and scientific insights with others, and I want to increase the awareness of the importance of preserving these vulnerable components of our planet.


Blog Team: How do we know that you have what it takes for this role? Oops, that sounded a bit harsh! No worries, we are not trying to test you! What excited you about taking this role and what are most looking forward to?

Lu: One of the key reasons for signing up as a ECS rep is my passion for effective communication and community engagement. I am excited about the opportunity to collect questionnaires about the concerns from other ECS members and share them with the council. Moreover, I am committed to improving communication between the cryosphere community and social science.

Ann-Sofie: I am passionate about the Cryosphere and about making life as an early career scientist better. I have organized EDI (equality, diversity and inclusion) awareness projects in my research groups, where especially the topics LGBTQ+ and gender within our Cryo community are close to my heart. Maybe it is something Danish or maybe it is just me – but when I see something wrong or something which can be done better, I speak up. I went to my first EGU General Assembly in 2019 and have experienced the organization from various sides: first as a conference assistant, then as an online attendee and finally as an in-person attendee. I believe that I can use these experiences combined with my drive to make life as an ECS better in my new role as EGU Cryo ECS rep.


Blog Team: Did you have some time to get to know each other and figure out how to make a good team?

Ann-Sofie: So far we have only met each other briefly online, but I am sure that Lu and I will find time after the EGU General Assembly 2023 to have a chat about our plans and expectations for the coming two years and how we together can form a good team.

Lu: As Ann-Sofie said, I hope we can find the time after EGU, but as of now, we have not yet sat down and talked about details since we are still getting to know the structures and other group members. I also would like to thank TJ: he did a great job in sharing his experience and tips and connecting us with the Cryo team through the Cryo coffee break [for the Cryo outreach team].


Little pieces of broken up sea ice float in the calm sea.

Sea ice – a topic both our new Cryo ECS reps are working on. [Credit: Maria Scheel distributed via]


Blog Team: Do you have any big ideas for your term?

Lu: I have many small ideas! I would especially like to help the outreach team and maybe contribute to the EGU blog. I also want to organize some workshops, social events, and seminars to encourage ECSs to become more involved in the Cryosphere community and advance their professional growth. I am also passionate about bridging the gap between the social science and the cryosphere communities in creative and interesting ways, such as art and photography exhibitions or quizzes for school students. So, I believe Ann-Sofie and I have tons of ideas we may discuss after the hand-over meeting. Of course, I am also thinking about how to make people more familiar with our cryo blog and make it more accessible to readers by ensuring that they can easily find the information they need.

Ann-Sofie: I would like to focus on decreasing the “distance” between the EGU ECS representative(s) and the ECS community, to make sure that the voice of the community really gets heard. I hope that together, Lu and I, can bring a lot of new ideas to the table which will be easier to carry out now that we are two. Further, by getting closer to the core of EGU I also hope to improve the rights and conditions for conference assistants – they are often the future geoscientists.


Blog Team: How can people get in touch with you in order to bring a certain topic forward to the EGU organisation or get guidance in a certain aspect?

Ann-Sofie: You are more than welcome to reach out to us via email or write me via Twitter and of course our Cryo Twitter account, if you do not already follow it. There we will keep you updated on what we are doing and also ask for community inputs. Finally, you will also be able to find me during the next General Assembly (#EGU24)!

Lu: Adding to Ann-Sofie, if you reach out to us, we will first discuss with each other and may connect you with other EGU divisions and work groups if necessary. At the next EGU General Assembly, we might contribute to presentations and generally create visibility through questionnaires and seminars. Meanwhile, you could also tag me on twitter in a post to share your thoughts or questions.


Blog Team: Lastly, do you want to share any fun facts about yourself?

Lu: Believe it or not, I’ve never been on an expedition to the Cryosphere 😩. But luckily I will go there in two weeks, boarding the Norwegian icebreaker Haakon, on a journey to the north of Svalbard, where we will float with an ice floe. I can hardly wait for basking in 20 hours of sunlight each day 😎!

Ann-Sofie: I recently started playing roller derby, which is by far the most inclusive, fun, and scary sport I have ever witnessed. I hope that science will someday have just a quarter of that inclusivity.

Finally, we as the entire ECS Cryo community would like to thank TJ for his great work and efforts in the past two  years as ECS rep! He did a great job at communicating and coordinating, even during his long fieldwork stays in the Antarctic. Good luck to TJ for his next endeavors and of course a very warm welcome to our new Cryo ECS reps, Ann-Sofie and Lu.

Edited by Lina Madaj, Loeka Jongejans & Maria Scheel


This guest post was contributed by a scientist, student or a professional in the Earth, planetary or space sciences. The EGU blogs welcome guest contributions, so if you've got a great idea for a post or fancy trying your hand at science communication, please contact the blog editor or the EGU Communications Officer to pitch your idea.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>