SPARC Scientific Steering Group

Current members

Current members of the SPARC Scientific Steering Group (SSG) are:


Neil Harris (UK): Cranfield University
Seok-Woo Son (Republic of Korea): Seoul National University

Members (2020)

Gufran Beig (India): Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology
Andrea Carril (Argentina): Center for Atmosphere and Ocean Research (CIMA/CONICET-UBA), Ciudad Universitaria
Wen Chen (China): Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Science
Nili Harnik (Israel): Tel Aviv University
Harry Hendon (Australia): Bureau of Meteorology
Takeshi Horinouchi (Japan): Hokkaido University
Nathaniel Livesey (USA): NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Michael Prather (USA): Department of Earth System Science University of California
Karen Rosenlof (USA): National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA);
Earth Systems Research Laboratory (ESRL)
Hauke Schmidt (Germany): Max Planck Institute for Meteorology
Viktoria Sofieva (Finland): Finnish Meteorological Institute
Donald Wuebbles (USA): University of Illinois
Tianjun Zhou (China): LASG, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Contact at WCRP Joint Planning Staff

M. Sparrow (WMO, international)

Group photo taken during the 27th SPARC SSG meeting, standing in from of the Table Mountain Facility in Boulder, Colorado (USA)
Members of the SPARC Scientific Steering Group, activity leaders, SPARC Office members and guests of the 27th SSG meeting held in December 2019 in Boulder, CO, USA. (photo: Hans Volkert).

Past members

see overview of previous and present SSG members as of 06/2021 (PDF, 0.16 MB)


Neil Harris

Co-chair of the SSG. Neil is Professor of Atmospheric Informatics at Cranfield University. He obtained his PhD in Chemistry at the University of California in Irvine in 1989 and then joined the European Ozone Research Coordination Unit in Cambridge, UK, where he was a NERC Advanced Research Fellow in the Dept of Chemistry until March 2016. He was a Chapter Lead Author on the 1994 and 2014 WMO/UNEP ozone assessments and is a co-editor of Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics. He has served as a SPARC Activity leader for the SI2N initiative, 20 years after doing similarly for the first SPARC Assessment Report. His research interests include measurements of atmospheric halocarbons, the Tropical Tropopause Layer and emissions of trace gases as well as analyses of ozone trends.

Seok-Woo Son

Co-chair of the SSG. Seok-Woo is an associate professor at the Seoul National University, Republic of Korea, primarily working on the large-scale atmospheric dynamics, upper troposphere-lower stratosphere processes, and stratosphere-troposphere dynamical coupling. He has been actively involved in the SPARC projects such as the CCMVal2, DynVar, and SNAP, and co-authored the WMO ozone assessment reports in 2010 and 2014. He has been (co-)convening SPARC-related sessions in the AGU and EGU meetings and is interested in regional activities in Asia.

Gufran Beig

Gufran works as Project Director at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, Pune, India. His area of research is atmsopheric chemistry and air pollution. He developed India’s first air quality forecasting project “System of Air Quality and Weather And Research” (SAFAR) and contributed to the assessment of its impact on human health and food security. Specific topics of expertise include long term changes and trends in the troposphere and stratosphere and hemispheric transport of chemical constituents.

Andrea F. Carril

Andrea is deputy director of both, the “Center for Atmosphere and Ocean Research” (CIMA/CONICET-UBA), and the “Argentinian-French Institute for Climate Studies and its Impacts” (UMI-IFAECI, jointly sponsored by CONICET-UBA-CNRS-IRD). She is co-head of a research group on Mechanism of regional climate and its Impacts, has leaded and coordinated several international research lines and projects, and was a member of the team that developed the “3rd National Communication of Climate Change” and its climate database to support impact studies in Argentina. Her current work concentrates on understanding aspects of regional climate variability and change related with the soil-atmosphere interaction, as well as their ecological and socio-economic impacts.

Wen Chen

Wen obtained his PhD in the Institute of Atmospheric Physics (IAP), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) in 1994. Currently he is director of the Center for Monsoon System Research at IAP/CAS. And he is also an adjunct professor at the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. His research interests include East Asia monsoon climate, atmospheric circulation and teleconnection patterns, stratosphere-troposphere dynamical coupling, and different types of El Niño and their effects on climate. He also served on several national review panels including the National Natural Science Foundation of China – CAS advisory panel that define future priorities in atmospheric science and climate change research.

Nili Harnik

Nili is a Professor at the School of Geosciences, Tel Aviv University, Israel. Her reserach interests are: i) The large scale circulation of the troposphere: How the mutual interactions between the Hadley circulation, the zonal jet streams and mid latitude waves shapes the global circulation; How the different dynamical regimes affect the dominant wave modes, the characteristics of internal variability, and the distribution of extreme events. ii) The large scale circulation of the stratosphere: The interaction of planetary scale Rossby waves with the polar jets in the stratosphere, how it affects internal variability, and how the dynamics interacts with radiation and ozone; Waves and instabilities in geophysical flows: The fundamental processes which shape geophysical fluid flows, like shear flow instabilities, nonlinear equilibration of waves with the mean flow, interaction of waves and turbulence, jet formation and sharpening.

Harry Hendon

Harry is senior principal research scientist and Climate Processes team leader at the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM), Melbourne. His research focuses on mechanisms and predictability of climate variability from weeks to decades and contributes to the development of the BoM seasonal forecast systems.  He has a focus on variability, predictability and impacts of organized tropical convection, including the interaction of the QBO with the MJO, and on the Southern Annular Mode, including the role of coupling with the stratosphere.  He is a member of the WWRP/WCRP Subseasonal-to-Seasonal Prediction Project Steering Group and previous co-chair of the WCRP Asian-Australian Monsoon Panel.

Takeshi Horinouchi

Takeshi is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Environmental Earth Science, Hokkaido University. His research interests include Geophysical fluid dynamics, Cumulus convection, Atmospheric waves, Atmospheric general circulation, Tropical meteorology, Tropical cyclone, Meteorology and climatology of the Asia-Pacific region, Middle atmosphere, Dynamics of Venus’s atmosphere, Cloud tracking, Software develoment for geophysical fluid sciences.

Nathaniel Livesey

Nathaniel is currently the Principal Investigator for the Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) instrument on the Earth Observing System Aura spacecraft, launched in 2004. His research interests are centered on microwave space based observations of the chemistry, hydrology and dynamics of Earth’s atmosphere. Most of his work has focused on the MLS experiments both on Aura and the earlier Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) launched in 1991. Before becoming Aura MLS PI, he was responsible for the MLS ‘retrieval’ algorithms. These convert the raw observations of the microwave signature of the atmosphere into measurements of atmospheric composition, temperature, humidity, and cloud ice.

Michael Prather

Michael is a Professor of Earth System Science at University of California, Irvine.  After an extended post-doc at Harvard, he moved to GISS with part-time assignments at Columbia and NASA HQ as a program manager for upper atmosphere program.  His research is founded on atmospheric chemistry and transport modeling, developing new process models and numerical methods.  Current studies focus on the chemically reactive greenhouse gases and model-measurement comparisons, particularly the development of relational metrics for chemistry-climate modeling.  He has been involved in ozone assessments beginning at Harvard and then became involved in IPCC assessments after moving to Irvine in 1992, as convening lead author or lead author on eight reports.  He served two terms on the International Ozone Commission and spent a year working in the U.S. State Department.

Karen Rosenlof

Karen is a Program leader and  Senior Scientist for Climate and Climate Change at NOAA/ESRL. Her expertise is in interpretation of stratospheric constituent, aerosol, and temperature data. She is an author of 111 peer-reviewed journal publications. She co-chairs the SPARCs upper troposphere and stratosphere Water Vapor Assessment (WAVAS-II), served as lead author in the first SPARC water vapor assessment and participated in SPARC ozone trends and temperature activities. She is co-author for WMO/UNEP Scientific Assessments of Ozone Depletion; a reviewer and contributing author for IPCC, and a lead author for a GRUAN Network Expansion report.

Hauke Schmidt

Hauke is deputy director of the department “Atmosphere in the Earth System” and head of the “Middle and Upper Atmosphere” group at the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg. He has studied various aspects of atmospherics dynamics and chemistry from the surface to the thermosphere and led the development of the “Hamburg Model for the neutral and ionized atmosphere” (HAMMONIA). His current work concentrates on understanding the response of the middle atmosphere to natural and anthropogenic forcing and the role of vertical coupling for this response. The interest in effects of solar variability and of large volcanic eruptions has prompted him in recent years to also work on potential consequences of suggested climate engineering.

Viktoria Sofieva

Viktoria  is senior research scientist at Finnish Meteorological Institute.  She has broad scientific interests and expertise: middle atmosphere chemical composition and dynamics, atmospheric remote sensing, gravity waves and turbulence, inverse problems, data merging and trend analyses.  Her specific expertise is satellite measurements in limb-viewing geometry.  Viktoria is actively involved in the ESA Climate Change Initiative and in several SPARC projects such as LOTUS, TUNER, and ATC. She participated in the recent WMO Ozone Assessments as a contributing author.

Donald J. Wuebbles

Don is Professor of Atmospheric Science at the University of Illinois. He is an expert in atmospheric physics and chemistry, with over 500 scientific publications related to the Earth’s climate, air quality, and the stratospheric ozone layer. In addition, he has co-authored a number of policy-relevant scientific assessments, including as a coordinating lead author for the 2013 IPCC report on the science of climate change, the 2014 U.S. National Climate Assessment, and the 2014 WMO assessment on stratospheric ozone.

Tianjun Zhou

Tianjun Zhou leads the development of the FGOALS climate system model at the State Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics (LASG), Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences. He is also an adjunct professor at the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. His personal research focuses on coupled atmosphere-ocean modelling, climate dynamics, climate change and variability, with particular emphasis on East Asia and the monsoons. Tianjun was co-chair of the CLIVAR Asian-Australian Monsoon Panel (AAMP) from 2013 to 2014 and is currently a member of the GEWEX/CLIVAR Monsoons Panel, and a member of GEWEX GDAP. He also served as Lead Author of chapter 14 of the IPCC WG1 AR5.