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6th July 2021

Adaptation and Resilience

Afternoon Plenary

Afternoon Plenary

Dr Tom Philp

Chief Executive Officer, Maximum Information

Tom is CEO of Maximum Information, a venture that aims to facilitate the advancement of applied climate risk information in order to create a more resilient society. He previously worked in the re/insurance industry, developing views of risk for a range of atmospheric perils in both established and emerging markets. He has a PhD in Meteorology from the University of Reading, and is currently a research associate of the Department of Philosophy at the London School of Economics.


Dr Helen Greatrex

Assistant Professor in Remote Sensing and Geospatial Analysis, The Pennsylvania State University

Helen Greatrex is an Assistant Professor in Penn State’s departments of Geography and Statistics and is a co-hire of Penn State's Institute for Computational and Data Sciences.  She also serves on the WMO Social and Economic Research Applications working group, SERA.   Prior to joining Penn State, Dr Greatrex was an Associate Research Scientist at the Columbia University’s IRI, where she worked extensively with the agricultural insurance industry on weather index design.

Dr Greatrex researches how satellite weather observations are used in weather risk management, focusing on the causal chain through hazard, exposure, vulnerability and impact.  She uses a variety of tools to explore this topic, from the geostatistical analysis of satellite rainfall, to mixed methods research on weather impacts and equity.  Recent work includes exploring how tailored weather data can support Somali humanitarian response, mapping flash flood research, and assessing the impact of rainfall on infant hydrocephalus in Uganda.


Dr Linda Speight
Researcher in Applied Flood Forecasting, University of Reading

Dr Linda Speight is a Hydrometeorologist working at the interface between research and practice. Her research involves developing effective approaches for using ensemble flood forecasts to support decision making.

Linda is currently a postdoctoral researcher on the FATHUM project at the University of Reading. Funded by NERC / FCDO's Science for Humanitarian Emergencies and Resilience (SHEAR) programme, the FATHUM project undertakes interdisciplinary research to strengthen global forecast-based humanitarian action. Linda is working on developing guidelines for post event reviews of the probabilistic, impact-based systems that underpin Forecast based Action and developing a pilot bulletin service for FCDO to support humanitarian response during the worst flood events.

Prior to joining the University of Reading, Linda was an operational forecaster for the Scottish Flood Forecasting Service. She is also an editorial board member for the Journal of Flood Risk Management. In 2018 she was awarded the Royal Meteorological Society Innovation Award for the development and delivery of a new surface water flood forecasting service for the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. 

Tom Philip Speaker
Helen Greatrex Speaker
Linda Speight Speaker

Prof Erin Coughlan de Perez

Dignitas Associate Professor, Tufts University and Senior Advisor, Red Cross Red Crescent Advisor

Dr. Coughlan de Perez bridges science, policy, and practice in her research on climate risk management around the world. As the Dignitas Associate Professor at the Feinstein International Center of Tufts University, she focuses on extreme events, exploring how droughts, floods, heatwaves, and other climate shocks can be anticipated before they happen. Erin works with humanitarian teams on the development of early action protocols to avoid disaster impacts, and she researches the adoption and effectiveness of climate change adaptation measures. Erin is also a Lead Author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 6th Assessment Report. Her chapter is Decision-Making Options for Managing Risk, as part of the Working Group II on Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability.

Erin Coughlan de Perez
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Dr Gary Fuller

Senior Lecturer in Air Quality Measurement, MRC Centre for Environment and Health, Imperial College London

Dr Gary Fuller is an air pollution scientist at Imperial College London. He led the development of the London Air Quality Network to become Europe’s most advanced regional measurement network. His research interests focus on the urban air pollution sources; how these are changing and how they affect our health. Gary is keen to ensure that air pollution is better understood by the public and policy makers. He is a member of the UK Government’s Air Quality Expert Group and was recently appointed as one of the UKRI / Met Office Clean Air Champions. He is a regular contributor to the Guardian newspaper. His air pollution book, “The Invisible Killer” is published by Melville House in Europe and North America.

Gary Fuller
Speakers: Room One

Mike Kendon

Climate Information Scientist, Met Office, National Climate Information Centre

Mike Kendon is a climate information scientist at the Met Office National Climate Information Centre. He studied an MSc in Hydrology at Imperial College, London and joined the Met Office in 2009. He helps develop and maintain systems to monitor the UK’s climate based on observations from the surface network of weather stations. His work encompasses software development, data analysis and science communication. Mike is the lead author for the Met Office’s annual state of the UK Climate reports.

Mike Kendon Speaker

Room One - Climate


Dr Laura Baker 

Research Scientist, NCAS, University of Reading

Laura Baker is a research scientist in the National Centre for Atmospheric Science, based in the Department of Meteorology at the University of Reading. Her main research interests include sub-seasonal to decadal forecasting for the UK and Europe; evaluating risk of extreme weather events in the UK; and predictability in the North Atlantic and Europe region. Her earlier research experience has included modelling climate and air quality impacts of anthropogenic emissions; studying extratropical cyclone dynamics; and working in the development of high-resolution ensemble forecast systems.


Chris Smith

Research Fellow, University of Leeds

Chris is a NERC-IIASA Collaborative Research Fellow based at the University of Leeds and International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Austria. Chris gained a PhD in Engineering from Leeds in 2016 and was a postdoc from 2016-2020 working on radiative forcing of climate. Chris’s research interests include using simple climate models to investigate climate impacts from a wide range of emissions scenarios, and the integration of climate change into energy supply and energy demand decision-making in integrated assessment models. Chris is a contributing author and chapter scientist for the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report and the Special Report on 1.5°C.


Dr Andrew Turner

Associate Professor of Monsoon Systems, NCAS and University of Reading

Andy has worked in the Department of Meteorology and National Centre for Atmospheric Science at University of Reading since his PhD.  He undertook a NERC Fellowship on The future of the Indian monsoon, before become a Lecturer and Associate Professor.  His research covers all aspects of monsoon systems, including fundamental processes, prediction, modelling and future climate change.  He led the INCOMPASS field campaign in India in 2016, involving the UK’s FAAM aircraft.  Andy is a Lead Author for the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report WGI, due for release in August 2021, and member and former Co-Chair of the GEWEX/CLIVAR Monsoons Panel.

Laura Baker Speaker
Chris Smith Speaker
Andrew Turner Speaker

Room Two - Air Quality and Composition

Speaker - Room Two
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Dr Steven Turnock

Senior Scientist, Met Office Hadley Centre

I undertook my PhD at the University of Leeds on the effect of changes in anthropogenic emissions on atmospheric aerosols, air quality and climate over the latter half of the 20th Century. Since completing my PhD in 2016 I have been working within the Earth System and Mitigation Science team of the Met Office Hadley Centre where I use coupled global composition climate models to investigate the interaction of short lived climate forcers within the Earth system.  

Steven Turnock Speaker
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Dr Laura Wilcox

Associate Professor, NCAS, University of Reading

Laura Wilcox studied Physics at the University of Oxford, and completed an M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Atmosphere, Ocean, and Climate at the University of Reading. Laura stayed at Reading as a research scientist following her Ph.D., and is currently an Associate Professor in the National Centre for Atmospheric Science.


Laura is interested in the climate response to changes in natural and anthropogenic aerosols. She is currently working on quantifying sources of uncertainty in aerosol radiative forcing, and the regional responses to this forcing. Laura is a Contributing Author to IPCC AR6 WG1 Chapter 8 on the regional precipitation responses to anthropogenic aerosols.


Dr Maria Val Martin

UKRI Future Leaders Fellow, University of Sheffield

Maria Val Martin is a UKRI Future Leaders Fellow at University of Sheffield. She is an atmospheric scientist working in atmosphere-biosphere-climate interactions. Her current research deals with understanding the extent to which land-based CO2 removal strategies can help mitigate climate change and meet targets set in the Paris Agreement and Net Zero commitments.  Her work integrates earth system models with field experimental data, and ground and satellite observations.

Laura Wilcox Speaker
Maria Val Martin Speaker
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Dr Antonio Capponi

Senior Research Associate, Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University

I am a volcanologist at Lancaster University. My research focuses on understanding the mechanisms behind volcanic eruption using field measurements, laboratory experiments and numerical simulations. Currently, I am using the Met Office dispersion model NAME for running ensembles of volcanic ash simulations and developing a new data assimilation method. The aim is to quantify uncertainties associated with input and internal model parameters. I am also developing experiments for characterizing the reflectivity of falling volcanic ash with a newly developed triple-frequency radar, in a laboratory-controlled environment and at three different frequencies simultaneously.

Antonio Capponi Speaker

Room Three - Weather

Speakers - Room Three

Ken Mylne

Head of Verification, Impacts and Post-Processing, Met Office​

Ken Mylne is Head of Verification, Impacts and Post-Processing in Weather Science at the Met Office. After early research in pollution dispersion and six years as an operational forecaster, Ken returned to research in ensemble forecasting where he led the development of the Met Office’s MOGREPS ensemble system and its applications. He later set up a Weather Impacts team exploiting probability forecasts for risk-based decision-making through understanding of the societal impacts of predicted weather, before promotion to his current role. Ken has also played a leading role in WMO supporting forecasting capabilities for disaster risk reduction worldwide.

Ken Mylne Speaker

Dr Linda Hirons

Research Scientist, NCAS, University of Reading​

Linda Hirons is a tropical meteorologist with a particular interest in the application of her understanding for improving weather and climate services in Africa. She completed her PhD in 2012 on the representation of the Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) in the ECMWF forecast model. Following that she spent a year as a Visiting Scientist at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Ghana. Since then, she has been based in NCAS with a research focus on drivers of sub-seasonal predictability, their representation in forecast models and their influence on local high impact weather over Africa. 

Linda Hirons Speaker

Ralph Burton

Research Scientist, NCAS

Ralph Burton is a Senior Research Scientist in NCAS, based in Leeds. His main areas of expertise and interest are: atmospheric dispersion, numerical modelling of atmospheric flow, and atmospheric dynamics in general. He has published on a wide range of topics, including volcanic plume modelling, simulating the behaviour of dense gases, analysis of aircraft measurements of gases, high-resolution climate modelling, the effects of wind farms upon local climate, orographic flow, deep convection, and the meteorology of West Africa.

Ralph Burton Speaker

Prof Andrew Charlton-Perez

Professor of Meteorology, University of Reading

Andrew Charlton-Perez is Professor of Meteorology and Head of Department in the Department of Meteorology at the University of Reading. He works both on stratospheric predictability and dynamics and the impact of climate variability on health, including in a recent project as part of the UK Climate Resilience Programme. Until late 2020 he was co-chair of the Stratospheric Network for the Assessment of Predictability, a joint project of WCRP SPARC and the S2S project and currently co-chairs the WCRP Academy Lighthouse Activity.

Andrew Charlton-Perez
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