Opportunity - Nonlinear Dynamicist / Climate Modeller.
The newly funded NERC project ODESSS aims to better
understand how to design and interpret ensembles of climate, earth
system and integrated assessment models. The project will develop and
study a collection of low dimensional nonlinear dynamical systems with
climate change like characteristics. We're looking for a mathematcian,
nonlinear dynamicist or modeller to work on the project over the next
two to three years. Deadline
for applications: 30th June 2021. Further details
Please contact me with any questions.
20th May 2021: Lloyds
Science of Risk Prize.
I'm very pleased to announce that our paper on the economic
consequences of stochastic variability in the climate system has won
the Lloyds Science of Risk Prize 2021
in the climate change category. Thank you Lloyds!
March 2021: New project funded. The
funded a new project entitled "Optimising the Design of Ensembles for
Science and Society (ODESSS)". It will involve building very large
(tens of thousands of members) and using maths, physics and a bit of
philosophy to consider how they should be interpreted.
There will also be a large element of gathering different perspectives
from diverse academic and non-academic communities. It's all about
building the foundations for how we use computer models to tell us
about the future in climate-change-like situations.
Baldissera Pacchetti, M., S. Dessai, S. Bradley and
the quality of regional climate information
of the America Meteorological Society, March 2021. [Local
This paper presents a framework for assessing the quality of climate
information provided for use in support of adaptation planning and
resilience building. It aims to help climate services and users of
climate information to identify when a particular source of climate
is suitable for their needs and if not, in what way it is lacking.
Calel, R., S.C. Chapman, D.A. Stainforth and N.W.
greater economic damages from climate change
Communications, October 2020. [Local
copy including SI] Winner of the Lloyds Science of
Risk Prize 2021
This paper uses a stochastic energy balance model to produce a
trajectories of plausible future global mean temperatures (GMTs). From
them it assesses the distribution of damages associated with various
future emissions of greenhouse gases. The risk premium associated with
distribution of damages is then calculated. The results find an
additional $10Tr to $50Tr of damages associated with climate change.
The character of these damages means they must be addressed primarily
by adaptation rather than mitigation. The social cost of carbon is ill
suited to capture these damages.
Stainforth, D.A. and R. Calel New
priorities for climate science
and climate economics in the 2020s
Communications, August 2020. [Local
This comment piece calls for new approaches to research on climate
change in both the physical and social sciences / economics.
It argues for a change of focus in these disciplines and a significant
scale up of efforts to understand the
conceptual challenges in physical climate change predictions and
assoiated economic assessments. Such efforts would lead to research
outputs being much better
support policy makers and societal planning.
Chapman, S.C., N.W. Watkins and D.A.Stainforth. Trends in
Winter Warm Spells in the Central England Temperature Record
of Applied Meteorology and Climatology,
June 2020. [Journal
copy of supplementary information.]
There is great interest in the extremes of summer heat waves but
changes in the duration, return periods and temperatures of warms
spells in winter can also have a significant impact, for instance on
ecosystems. This paper demonstrates methods for quantifying such
changes in the observational record.
Harrison, S., T. Mighall, D.A.Stainforth, P. Allen,
Macklin, E. Anderson, J. Knight, D. Mauquoy, D. Passmore, B. Rea, M.
Spagnolo and S, Shannon. Uncertainty
in geomorphological responses
to climate change
46, 10.1029/2018GL081004, Sept. 2019. [Journal
The sensitivity of nonlinear systems to small uncertainties in the
initial state - a characteristic of mathematical chaos - is well known
and widely studied. The implications for uncertainties in our
projections of climate change are increasingly in the spot light - see
for instance the Hawkins et al paper below. It is often assumed,
however, that landscapes respond to climate in a relatively linear and
predictable way. This paper demonstrates that this is unlikely to be
and calls for a more probabilistic approach to the study of
responses to climate change. This is something which is of practical
for infrastructure planning and management in the context
of climate change.
Philosophy of Climate Science
Nonlinear dynamical systems (chaos)
Economics of Climate Change (specifically IAMs)
Climate Modelling and Its Interpretation
few further publications from recent years which give a
my work and interests:
full list is available from the publications
Stainforth, D.A.. The Changing
Shape of Climate. Earth Magazine,
July 2018. [Journal
A public facing magazine piece which attempts to
describe the conflicting statistical requirements one comes across when
trying to "observe" aspects of climate change. It is based on a series
of academic papers in Environmental Research Leters and Philosophical
Transactions of the Royal Society.
Chapman, S.C., N.W. Watkins and D.A.Stainforth. Warming
in Summer HeatWaves.
156, Issue 1-2, pp69-86, 10.1007/s10584-019-02520-8, Jan. 2019. [Journal
copy of paper including supplementary information.]
Dessai, S., A.J. Bhave, C. Birch, D. Conway, L.
Garcia-Carreras, J.P. Gosling, N. Mittal, D.A. Stainforth. Building
narratives to characterise uncertainty in regional climate change
through expert elicitation. Environmental Research Letters,
13, 074005, June 2018. [Journal
Calel, R. and D.A. Stainforth. On the
Physics of Three
Integrated Assessment Models. Bulletin of the American
Meteorological Society (BAMS), June 2017, pp1199-1216. [Journal
copy of supplementary information.]
Frigg, R., L.A. Smith and D.A. Stainforth An assessment of the
foundational assumptions in high-resolution climate
projections: the case of UKCP09
Hawkins, E., R. Smith, J. Gregory & D. A.
uncertainty in near-term climate projections.
1-13, 2015, doi:10.1007/s00382-015-2806-8. [Journal
Stainforth D. A., S. C. Chapman and N. W. Watkins, Mapping
climate change in European temperature distributions.
Lett 2013. 8. [Journal
Daron J. D. and D. A. Stainforth, On
predicting climate under climate change. Environ. Res. Lett.,