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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - IRI THESys

Extreme event attribution and timescales of emergence of climate change signals

Peter is a doctoral student at the department of Geography. His main research interest is attribution of extreme weather events to anthropogenic climate change, starting with tropical cyclones in the Caribbean.

Photo: www.nasa.gov


This doctoral thesis aim is to investigate the time scales of emergence of climate signals that can be attributed to anthropogenic climate change. This research will be based on attribution studies for specific climate extremes and thus provides scientific input to the ongoing loss and damage debate. The objective of this research within the EmBARK project is to quantify the time scales at which climatic conditions change in order to compare them to the time scales at which societies can adapt to climate change. Extreme event attribution studies build upon the comparison of probabilities of specific weather events in a current climate and in a contractual climate without anthropogenic forcing.

In this thesis, the focus will be set on an understudied region being the Caribbean. While providing attribution for this region, there will be opportunities to develop new approaches in the existing framework of extreme event attribution. Finally, this project will contribute to the politically relevant question of how much of potential future extreme events could have been avoided by serious mitigation efforts?


Peter studied Physics at the Freie Universität Berlin and wrote his master thesis in collaboration with the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. His Phd is a part of the EmBARK project lead by Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and Climate Analytics with collaborations to the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and the University of Oxford. Before he was working as a research analyst for Climate Analytics focusing on climate change impacts in West Africa.


Photo: Franca Wohlt


Peter Pfleiderer, Doctoral Researcher
THESys Graduate Program
Phone: +49 30 2093 66378 
E-mail: peter.pfleiderer@climateanalytics.org