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Personal profile

Biography

I am currently Head of School in the School of Environmental Sciences, and was previously the Associate Dean for Research for the Faculty of Science.  

My research is on dynamical and physical processes that are important for weather forecasting and climate prediction; in particular mesoscale dynamical meteorology, air-sea-ice interactions, and atmosphere-ocean coupling. I am regarded as an international expert on these processes in the polar regions. 

I am interested in real weather systems: what they look like, how they work physically and how we can describe them mathematically.  Hopefully such work will lead to a better understanding of the climate system and improvements in forecasting and modelling the atmosphere and ocean.

I received the Adrian Gill Prize from the Royal Meteorological Society in 2018, which recognises significant multi-disciplinary meteorological research achievements over the preceding 5 years.

Career

  • 2022-present: Head of School, School of Environmental Sciences 
  • 2017-2022: Associate Dean for Research, Faculty of Science; REF2021 Sci. Lead
  • 2010-present: Professor, School of Environmental Sciences, UEA
  • 2010-2013: Director of Research for the School; REF2014 UOA7 Coordinator
  • 2006-2010: Reader, School of Environmental Sciences, UEA
  • 2004-2006: Lecturer, School of Environmental Sciences, UEA
  • 1998-2004: Research Scientist, British Antarctic Survey (BAS), Cambridge
  • 1995-1998: Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Dept. of Physics, University of Toronto, Canada
  • 1992-1995: PhD in Meteorology, University of Reading
  • 1987-1991: BSc (Hons) in Mathematics (First Class), University of Edinburgh

Key Research Interests

My research is on weather and climate processes, in particular mesoscale and boundary-layer meteorology and interactions between the atmosphere and the ocean or land-surface.  I focus on the high latitudes - both the Arctic and Antarctic - where climate change is predicted to be greatest.  My research interests are broad and interdisciplinary, covering both meteorology and oceanography; while my research methods include analysis of observational data from field campaigns and state-of-the-art numerical modelling.  I have well-established collaborations with scientists in Canada, USA, Norway and Iceland - indeed more than three-quarters of my publications are with international authors - as well as at several UK Universities, BAS and the Met Office.

Current and Recent Major Projects:

  • Arctic Summertime Cyclones: Dynamics and Sea-Ice Interaction, 2020-2024; NERC Discovery grant 
  • SOC, Southern Ocean Clouds, 2020-2025: NERC Uncertainty in Climate Sensitivity due to Clouds Programme 
  • FOGGI: Fog Over the Indo-Gangetic plains of India, 2019-2021:  Newton WCSSP Weather and Climate Science Services Partnership; FOGGI Follow Ons, 2021-22 & 2022-23
  • CANDIFLOS, Characterising and Interpreting FLuxes Over Sea-ice, 2019-2022: NERC Discovery grant. 
  • The Iceland-Greenland Seas Project 2016-2021: NERC Discovery grant. The IGP is a major (~£4M) international programme of research – including a winter research cruise, moorings, buoys, gliders and aircraft-based field work as well as a suite numerical modelling.  
  • Ocean2Ice: Processes and variability of heat transport in the Amundsen Sea 2013-2016. NERC Ice Sheet Stability research programme.  
  • ACCACIA, Aerosol Cloud Coupling and Climate Interactions in the Arctic, 2011-2016.NERC Arctic Research Programme. 
  • DIAMET, Diabatic influence on mesoscale structures in extratropical storms, 2011-2015. NERC Storm Risk Mitigation Programme.  
  • OFCAP, Orographic flows and climate over the Antarctic Peninsula, 2009-2012. NERC Antarctic Funding Initiative.   
  • GFDex, The Greenland Flow Distortion Experiment, 2005-2009: Funded initially as a NERC standard grant, this blossomed into a major (£3M) international project with funding coming from Canada, Norway, the EU and the US (for allied oceanographic work). I instigated, obtained funding for, and developed this project into the major international enterprise it became.

Impact from my research

  • I have ongoing collaborations with scientists at two of the foremost weather forecasting agencies in the world: the Met Office and the European Centre for Medium-range Weather Forecasting with a focus on surface-layer, boundary-layer & cloud parameterization and the simulation of orographic flows.
  • Our novel research on surface exchange over sea ice has recently led to changes in the surface exchange scheme in the Met Office suite of forecasting and climate models and in the ECWMF. Our new surface drag scheme became operational in the Met Office’s forecasting system in September 2018 and has been incorporated in the GL8 climate model configuration so will be in future climate models. 

Publications: EPrints Digital Repository

Areas of Expertise

Key Responsibilities

  • Head of the School of Environmental Sciences
  • Associate Dean of Research, Faculty of Science (2017-2022) 
  • REF2021, Lead for the Faculty of Science
  • Director of Research for the School of Environmental Sciences (2010-2013)
  • REF2014, UoA7 Coordinator

Postgraduate Research Opportunities

Click here for current PhD opportunities in the School of Environmental Sciences, and feel free to email me to discuss projects in my areas of research interest.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 13 - Climate Action

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, University of Reading

… → 1995

Bachelor of Science, University of Edinburgh

… → 1991

Media Expertise

  • Weather
  • Climate Change
  • Atmospheric science

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or