Quaternary research in the Baltic countries
The development of Quaternary research in the Baltic countries was determined by geopolitical position as well as by economical and social conditions, the formation of science centres, the progress of geological thought, the natural environment and the specific geological development of this area of Eastern Europe. One of the peculiarities of Baltic Quaternary research was that it was undertaken initially by French, German, Russian, English, Finnish and Polish scholars, and later by Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian researchers. The different nationalities infused Quaternary research with a variety of ideas and methods of study. Thus, within the course of investigations of both Quaternary and bedrock geology, specific periods related to progress in science and historical events in the Baltic States can be recognized: (1) scholastic period, drift hypothesis, Ice Age, glacialism, polyglacialism (Russian Empire administration until 1914); (2) geomorphological investigations (independent republics interwar years 1918–1939); (3) detailed investigations and mapping (Soviet administration 1940–1990); and (4) modern Quaternary studies (restoration of independence of Baltic States from 1990).