Michael E. Mann

Pennsylvania State University

Election Year: 2020
Primary Section: 64, Human Environmental Sciences
Secondary Section: 16, Geophysics
Membership Type: Member
Photo Credit: Joshua Yospyn


Dr. Mann is Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Science and Director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State. His research focuses on climate science and climate change. He was selected by Scientific American as one of the fifty leading visionaries in science and technology in 2002, was awarded the Hans Oeschger Medal of the European Geophysical Union in 2012. He made Bloomberg News' list of fifty most influential people in 2013.  He has received the Friend of the Planet Award from the National Center for Science Education,  the Stephen H. Schneider Award for Outstanding Climate Science Communication from Climate, the Award for Public Engagement with Science from the AAAS, the Climate Communication Prize from the American Geophysical Union. He received the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement 2019 and was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2020. He is a Fellow of the AGU, AMS, GSA, AAAS and the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. He is co-founder of the award-winning science website RealClimate.org, author of more than 200 peer-reviewed and edited publications, numerous op-eds and commentaries, and four books including Dire Predictions, The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars, The Madhouse Effect and The Tantrum that Saved the World.

Research Interests

Dr. Mann is best known for developing and applying climate field reconstruction methods to reconstruct pre-historic climate patterns using paleoclimate "proxy" data such as tree-rings, corals, ice cores, and lake and ocean sediments. That work resulted in the well-known "hockey stick" temperature curve demonstrating the anomalous nature of modern warming. His research interests, however, span an array of topics involving climate variability and human-caused climate change. Specific areas of interest include the comparison of theoretical climate model predictions with observational data, the impact of climate change on tropical storms and hurricanes and the role of jet stream dynamics in understanding and explaining the impact of climate change on persistent weather extremes. Other areas of interest include investigations of geophysical and ecological system responses to climate variability and climate change, theoretical climate modeling, climate signal detection methods, and statistical and time series analysis approaches in the Earth and Environmental sciences. Dr. Mann co-developed a statistical approach (the "MTM-SVD" method) for detecting oscillatory signals that has been applied across a wide range of scientific disciplines including the study of fish populations, epidemics, network design and wireless communications.

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