State of the Planet

News from the Columbia Climate School

What We Do

  • Hannah Nissan: Forecasting Climate to Help Save Lives

    Hannah Nissan: Forecasting Climate to Help Save Lives

    Hannah Nissan, a postdoctoral research scientist at the International Research Institute for Climate and Society, studies how better climate forecasting might help reduce the number of deaths from heat waves and improve agriculture and child nutrition.

  • Jeffrey Shaman: What Makes the Flu Spread?

    Jeffrey Shaman: What Makes the Flu Spread?

    The onset of flu season each year comes as no surprise. But what is surprising is that we don’t know exactly how the flu spreads. Jeffrey Shaman is working on that.

  • Adam Sobel: Preparing for the Next Big Storm

    Adam Sobel: Preparing for the Next Big Storm

    Superstorm Sandy was a wake-up call for a lot of people in New York City, including Adam Sobel, who’s spent more than two decades studying the physics of weather and climate.

  • Richard Seager Sees Hand of Climate Change in Drought

    Richard Seager Sees Hand of Climate Change in Drought

    California’s wet and snowy winter brings welcome relief from a years-long drought that has challenged the state’s water supply and agricultural system. But climate scientist Richard Seager of Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory offers words of caution: Remember what happened, because it will happen again.

  • Leymah Gbowee: Out of War, a Legacy of Building Peace

    Leymah Gbowee: Out of War, a Legacy of Building Peace

    Leymah Gbowee was 17 when war broke out in Liberia. Her experiences drove her onto a path of suffering, discovery and service that led to work rehabilitating child soldiers and helping build peace, village by village, in Liberia and eventually neighboring Sierra Leone.

  • Michelle Ho: In a Land of Plenty, Big Water Problems

    Michelle Ho: In a Land of Plenty, Big Water Problems

    Michelle Ho grew up in Australia, the driest inhabited continent, with an appreciation for the value of having a clean glass of water to drink. Now, she conducts research for the Columbia Water Center on America’s water systems.

  • Pratigya Polissar Sees Landscapes Changing Through a Microscope

    Pratigya Polissar Sees Landscapes Changing Through a Microscope

    The word fossils typically conjures images of T-Rexes and trilobites. Pratigya Polissar thinks micro: A paleoclimatologist, he digs into old sediments and studies molecular fossils—the microscopic remains of plants and animals that can tell us a lot about what was living in a particular time period.

  • Colin Kelley: Food and Water Vulnerability in a Changing Climate

    Colin Kelley: Food and Water Vulnerability in a Changing Climate

    Colin Kelley, an associate research scientist with the International Research Institute for Climate and Society, studies regional climate in vulnerable areas like the Middle East in order to improve our ability to make forecasts, plan ahead and become more resilient to drought and other climate shifts.

  • Kirsty Tinto: Mapping on and under Antarctica’s Ice

    Kirsty Tinto: Mapping on and under Antarctica’s Ice

    Kirsty Tinto flies aboard a specially equipped airplane in very cold places to study ice sheets and ice shelves. She’s an associate research scientist in the polar geophysics group at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

Banner featuring a collage of extreme heat images.

Recent record-breaking heat waves have affected communities across the world. The Extreme Heat Workshop will bring together researchers and practitioners to advance the state of knowledge, identify community needs, and develop a framework for evaluating risks with a focus on climate justice. Register by June 15

  • Hannah Nissan: Forecasting Climate to Help Save Lives

    Hannah Nissan: Forecasting Climate to Help Save Lives

    Hannah Nissan, a postdoctoral research scientist at the International Research Institute for Climate and Society, studies how better climate forecasting might help reduce the number of deaths from heat waves and improve agriculture and child nutrition.

  • Jeffrey Shaman: What Makes the Flu Spread?

    Jeffrey Shaman: What Makes the Flu Spread?

    The onset of flu season each year comes as no surprise. But what is surprising is that we don’t know exactly how the flu spreads. Jeffrey Shaman is working on that.

  • Adam Sobel: Preparing for the Next Big Storm

    Adam Sobel: Preparing for the Next Big Storm

    Superstorm Sandy was a wake-up call for a lot of people in New York City, including Adam Sobel, who’s spent more than two decades studying the physics of weather and climate.

  • Richard Seager Sees Hand of Climate Change in Drought

    Richard Seager Sees Hand of Climate Change in Drought

    California’s wet and snowy winter brings welcome relief from a years-long drought that has challenged the state’s water supply and agricultural system. But climate scientist Richard Seager of Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory offers words of caution: Remember what happened, because it will happen again.

  • Leymah Gbowee: Out of War, a Legacy of Building Peace

    Leymah Gbowee: Out of War, a Legacy of Building Peace

    Leymah Gbowee was 17 when war broke out in Liberia. Her experiences drove her onto a path of suffering, discovery and service that led to work rehabilitating child soldiers and helping build peace, village by village, in Liberia and eventually neighboring Sierra Leone.

  • Michelle Ho: In a Land of Plenty, Big Water Problems

    Michelle Ho: In a Land of Plenty, Big Water Problems

    Michelle Ho grew up in Australia, the driest inhabited continent, with an appreciation for the value of having a clean glass of water to drink. Now, she conducts research for the Columbia Water Center on America’s water systems.

  • Pratigya Polissar Sees Landscapes Changing Through a Microscope

    Pratigya Polissar Sees Landscapes Changing Through a Microscope

    The word fossils typically conjures images of T-Rexes and trilobites. Pratigya Polissar thinks micro: A paleoclimatologist, he digs into old sediments and studies molecular fossils—the microscopic remains of plants and animals that can tell us a lot about what was living in a particular time period.

  • Colin Kelley: Food and Water Vulnerability in a Changing Climate

    Colin Kelley: Food and Water Vulnerability in a Changing Climate

    Colin Kelley, an associate research scientist with the International Research Institute for Climate and Society, studies regional climate in vulnerable areas like the Middle East in order to improve our ability to make forecasts, plan ahead and become more resilient to drought and other climate shifts.

  • Kirsty Tinto: Mapping on and under Antarctica’s Ice

    Kirsty Tinto: Mapping on and under Antarctica’s Ice

    Kirsty Tinto flies aboard a specially equipped airplane in very cold places to study ice sheets and ice shelves. She’s an associate research scientist in the polar geophysics group at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.