Member Since 1993
Adam H. Sobel
Professor, Columbia University
Adam Sobel studies the dynamics of climate and weather, especially in the tropics. In recent years he has become particularly focused on understanding the risks to society from extreme weather events and climate change. Sobel is author or co-author of over 200 peer-reviewed scientific articles; a book, Storm Surge, focused on Hurricane Sandy; and op-eds and articles in the mainstream media. He hosts a podcast, Deep Convection, featuring wide-ranging conversations with other scientists.
Professional Experience
Columbia University
Professor
2000 - Present
Education
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Doctorate
Honors & Awards
Union Fellow
Received December 2023
Citation
For outstanding contributions to understanding of tropical meteorology and climate
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Jule Gregory Charney Lecture
Received December 2022
Ascent Award
Received December 2014
Kenneth Carslaw, Meredith Hastings, Adam Sobel, and Rodney J. Weber received 2014 Atmospheric Sciences Ascent Awards at the 2014 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, held 15–19 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award recognizes "research cont...
Kenneth Carslaw, Meredith Hastings, Adam Sobel, and Rodney J. Weber received 2014 Atmospheric Sciences Ascent Awards at the 2014 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, held 15–19 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award recognizes "research contributions by exceptional mid-career scientists in the fields of atmospheric and climate sciences."  
Citation

We congratulate Dr. Adam Sobel, winner of a 2014 Ascent Award “for fundamental contributions leading to a better understanding of the dynamics of the tropical atmosphere.”

—Peter Webster, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta

Response
I wish to thank Professor Webster and the Atmospheric Sciences section awards committee for selecting me for this award and also those who nominated me for it. It’s a great honor, and I am humbled to be in the company of previous recipients. It takes a village, as the cliché goes. I learned the field first and foremost from my Ph.D. advisor, Alan Plumb, and my postdoctoral advisor, Chris Bretherton. Kerry Emanuel, Isaac Held, and David Neelin also stand out as mentors from whom I’ve been privileged to learn over the years. Lorenzo Polvani and Mark Cane have been my most important mentors and colleagues at Columbia, guiding me through academic life since I arrived here 15 years ago. Many more colleagues than I can name at my two Columbia homes—the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and the Department of Applied Physics and Applied Math in Columbia’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences—have made this a wonderful place to go from junior to “midcareer.” I have been especially fortunate, though, to be able to sustain long-term collaborative relationships with several people here in particular, especially Suzana Camargo and Michela Biasutti and, more recently, Michael Tippett and Shuguang Wang as well. Whatever success I have had in research over the last decade is due in large part to them, as well as to an outstanding series of postdocs and graduate students. I consider myself truly fortunate for having had the opportunity to work with scientists of this exceptional caliber. I hope that we are able to keep working together for many more years. Most of all, I thank my family: my parents and sister; my wife, Marit Larson; and our sons, Eli and Samuel, for their love and support. —Adam Sobel, Columbia University, New York, N.Y.
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Publications
Subseasonal Variability of Humid Heat During the South Asian Summer Monsoon

The South Asian summer monsoon strongly modulates regional temperature and humidity. While extreme dry heat peaks in the pre‐monsoon season, ...

March 21, 2024
AGU Abstracts
The tension between curiosity and usability in climate science
ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES 2023 FELLOWS
atmospheric sciences | 13 december 2023
Adam H. Sobel
Curiosity is what drew most of us to science when we were young, and remains a primary source of inspiration and discovery once we are older and worki...
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Behavior of Free-Tropospheric Transients in Relation to Sub-seasonal Rainfall in the East Pacific
THE MADDEN-JULIAN OSCILLATION AND CONVECTIVELY COUPLED WAVES IN THE TROPICS: OBSERVATIONS, THEORY, MODELING, AND PREDICTION I POSTER
atmospheric sciences | 13 december 2023
Isabelle Bunge, Adam H. Sobel, Michela Biasutti
At sub-seasonal time scales, rainfall variance and SLP gradients are are tightly linked in the East Pacific ITZC, via the effect of free-troposphere c...
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More extreme Indian monsoon daily rainfall during El Niño summers
BRIDGING THE GAP FROM CLIMATE TO EXTREME WEATHER: OBSERVATIONS, THEORY, AND MODELING I POSTER
atmospheric sciences | 12 december 2023
Spencer A. Hill, Adam H. Sobel, Michela Biasutti, ...
For the fertile and densely populated Indian subcontinent, seasonal droughts in the summer monsoon rains can severely curtail agricultural yields whil...
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