Professor, Columbia University

Adam Sobel is a professor at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. He is an atmospheric scientist who specializes in the dynamics of climate and weather, particularly in the tropics, on time scales of days to decades. A major focus of his current research is extreme events - such as hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, and droughts, and the risks these pose to human society in the present and future climate. He is leading a new Columbia University Initiative on Extreme Weather and Climate.

Sobel holds a Bachelor’s degree in Physics and Music from Wesleyan University, and a Ph.D. in Meteorology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is author or co-author of over 100 peer-reviewed scientific articles, op-eds for CNN, The Los Angeles Times, The Times of India, and other venues. In the last few years, Sobel has received the Meisinger Award from the American Meteorological Society, the Excellence in Mentoring Award from the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University, an AXA Award in Extreme Weather and Climate from the AXA Research Fund, and an Ascent Award from the Atmospheric Sciences Section of the American Geophysical Union. His book Storm Surge received the 2014 Atmospheric Science Librarians International Choice Award in the popular category and the 2016 Louis J. Battan Author’s Award from the American Meteorological Society.

Sobel lives in New York City with his wife and two teenage sons.


  • –present
    Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University