Academic Profile

William Gutowski is a climate scientist who has worked to understand regional climate processes and climate-change information.  Dr. Gutowski received a B.S. (magna cum laude) in  Physics and  Astronomy from Yale University in 1976 and a Ph.D. in Meteorology from MIT in 1984. 

He has played several leadership roles in programs supporting his regional-climate research, among them:  the WCRP Task Force on Regional Climate Downscaling, and the WCRP Coordinated Regional Downscaling Experiment (CORDEX) Science Advisory Team (SAT).  In particular, he was Co-Chair of the CORDEX SAT from October 2013 to December 2019, strengthening the scientific foundations of CORDEX, developing appropriate links with climate-impacts communities, and promoting coordinated evaluation of all types of downscaling, both dynamic and statistical, in part through his collaborations with the University of Cape Town.

His modelling work has focused on the regional hydrological cycle, with a special emphasis extreme precipitation events, their physics, and their projected changes.  The work has identified the strengths and challenges for simulating precipitation extremes, linked to process understanding.  A goal of the focus on extreme events has been to produce climate change information of relevance to society, because changes in extreme events are where much of the impacts of climate change will occur.  Consequently, he has worked in various ways to foster an understanding of how to produce and communicate climate change information to stakeholders, engaging with diverse groups such as water managers and the farming community.

He is a Lead Author for the Working Group I report of the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report, as well as a Lead Author for the Fifth Assessment Report and a Contributing Author for the Third and Fourth Assessment Reports.  He was an Editor of the Journal of Hydrometeorology for five years.  He is a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society.

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