Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Community Priorities Update

Following is a slightly edited update to an earlier post in this blog:

The AMS Council recently approved our initiative to develop an AMS Statement on community priorities. We have confined the drafting effort to a few people so as to efficiently develop the first couple of drafts. Much material developed over the past two years is available to this group. Most important will be the review process that will expand the horizon to ensure we have covered the bases properly. We are on a very fast track if we are to influence future budgets and the next administration. AMS has initiated a parallel effort to develop a Transition Document to be used during the upcoming Presidential campaign season (which is already well under way). We have cross-pollinated the Statement and Transition Document groups and intend to synchronize these efforts. Our ambitious goal is to have a draft of the Statement and Transition Document ready for AMS Council review in January. The Statement will then go through a vetting process with a public comment period and refinement prior to final approval by the Council. Both of these documents need to be concise and written for the general public. The Statement will also need supplemental material that expands on the items in the Statement. The writing team is already underway and I expect to see some results soon.

George Frederick
AMS Commission on the Weather and Climate Enterprise

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

WAS*IS Call For Papers

Call For Papers Reminder for the WAS*IS Session at the Boston AAG Meeting in April:

Carlie Lawson passed along this (slightly edited) call for papers reminder. The deadline is in one week. See the call below the message from Carlie:

Dear stupendous folks!

It's time for that WAS*IS session Call for Papers reminder I promised you a few weeks back (and I'm sure you've been waiting with baited breath for)! Yes, it's long-ish. Please, forgive me for that and read on!

We're closing in on the Association of American Geographers official deadline for abstracts which is Halloween, October 31. Although our session organizers have (by necessity) set earlier dates than this for submitting abstracts to us, if you absolutely can't make the earlier deadlines, give my shirt sleeve a virtual tug and I'll see about adding you. The October 31, 2007 date however, is set by AAG, and I can't do anything about that. Sorry.

Let me clarify a few points/questions:

1. You don't have to be a participant of a WAS*IS workshop in order to present in these sessions.

You don't have to be a geographer to present at AAG.

Jenn and I are serious about the "but not limited to" clause in our session abstract. Even if your research isn't described in the specific points we suggest, please e-mail one of us. We just couldn't think of everything and we really are interested in showing just how diverse the idea/practice of integrated studies is/can be.

If you know of someone who's not already received this call for papers (i.e. isn't in that massive list of folks on this e-mail), yes , please forward it to them. This includes your students, other professors, other researchers, your Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), your family members, etc. LOL No need to ask.

5. Students: if you're low on funds, volunteer to work a shift for the AAG. You'll get half off your registration, and you'll be paid $8 an hour. For details, visit

A big, huge thank you to the Climate Specialty Group and the Environmental Perception and Behavioral Geography Specialty Group for co-sponsoring Jenn and I's WAS*IS session. We appreciate your involvement and cooperation!

Here, again, for your reading enjoyment are the calls for papers for both sessions being organized by WAS*IS.Call for Papers 2008 AAG Meeting, Boston, MA, April 15-19, 2008

Weather and Society*Integrated Studies (WAS*IS) Session

Co-sponsored by the Climate Specialty Group and the Environmental Perception and Behavioral Geography Specialty Group

Organizers: Jennifer Cox (City University of New York Graduate Center) and Carlie Lawson (Natural Hazards Consulting)

WAS*IS engages in identifying and pursuing research opportunities in addition to improving or facilitating the ongoing relationships among practitioners, researchers, and stakeholders in meteorology and the social sciences. This panel session seeks theoretical, empirical, or practical applications that demonstrate the integration of weather research and societal impacts.

This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Quantitative or qualitative methodologies for improving understanding, communication, and use of weather and climate information,
  • Communicating uncertainty and forecasts,
  • Intersections of warnings, response and emergency management,
  • Research in mitigation, preparedness, and sustainability,
  • Role of technology for modeling or mapping hazards and vulnerability.

We invite papers exploring new approaches to study weather, climate, and society.

Please submit your abstract (250 words or less) and PIN to one of the organizers, Jennifer Cox ( or Carlie Lawson ( by October 22, 2007.

If you have any questions about the sessions, please contact the organizers.

Climatology and Hazards of Severe Weather Session
Co-sponsored by the Climate Specialty Group and Hazards Specialty Group

Organizer: Walker Ashley (Meteorology Program, Department of Geography, Northern Illinois University)

Severe weather poses a significant threat to societies around the world. Improving the forecasts and warnings of these events is a result of advancements in analysis and forecasting techniques, technologies, dissemination methods, and the new scientific understanding that develops from basic and applied research such as descriptive or synoptic climatologies. This paper session will explore the climatology and hazards of tornadoes, hail, high winds, lightning, floods, and/or severe winter-weather phenomenon. Contributors are encouraged to provide descriptive or synoptic climatologies of severe weather phenomena, assess past hazards or illustrate the future risks and potential vulnerabilities of societies to severe weather events, and/or present novel techniques in overcoming issues related to severe weather reporting procedures.

Please submit your abstract (250 words or less) and PIN to the organizer, Walker Ashley ( by October 29, 2007.

Abstract instructions are available from the AAG website at:

All things are possible.
Ask, Believe, Receive!
Carlie Lawson
President/Senior Planner
Natural Hazards Consulting
912 Garver Street
Norman, OK 73069
cell: 405.308.7233

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Member News - Terry Tarbell

AMS Fellow Terry C. Tarbell has accepted a position as Executive Vice President for Business Development with DB Consulting Group, Inc., in their Silver Spring, Maryland office. Previously Dr. Tarbell was a Senior Vice President with R. S. Information Systems.

Member News - Susan Avery

Susan K. Avery, AMS Fellow and Past President is moving east to become the ninth President and Director of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Most recently Dr. Avery was Vice Chancellor for Research and Interim Dean of the Graduate School at the University of Colorado at Boulder. For more information, please visit the WHOI web site:

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

GEOSS Constituent Forum

Meeting announcement:

Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS)
Constituent Forum

1 November 2007, 10:30 AM to Noon
Department of Commerce Auditorium
14th Street and Constitution Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20230

(Enter from 14th Street)

The United States Group on Earth Observations (USGEO) Co-Chairs are pleased to invite you to a Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS) Constituent Forum on 1 November 2007 from 10:30 to noon at the Department of Commerce Auditorium in Washington, DC. The full invitation and brief GEOSS description can be found at

RSVP to Jamie Krauk (, 202-482-6093) if you plan to attend.

At this forum, key USGEO and Group on Earth Observations (GEO) members will discuss the progress to date on GEOSS, the critical role of stakeholders in furthering GEOSS development, and outline the upcoming GEO Ministerial Summit to be held on November 30th in Cape Town, South Africa.

We anticipate a lively, interactive discussion and exchange of ideas and opinions.


  • VADM Conrad Lautenbacher (NOAA)
  • Dr. Gene Whitney (OSTP)
  • Dr. Kathie Olsen (NSF)
  • Dr. George Gray (EPA, invited)
  • Dr. Mark Myers (USGS, invited), and
  • Dr. Mike Freilich (NASA, invited)
What: GEOSS Constituent Forum

When: Thursday, 1 November 2007, from 10:30 AM to Noon

Where: Department of Commerce Auditorium
14th Street and Constitution Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20230

Enter from 14th Street

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

"Dream" Drafting Team in Place for AMS Priorites Statement

A recent post reported that the AMS Council, at their September meeting in Boston, decided to move forward, on an accelerated basis, with the proposed AMS Statement on Weather and Climate Community Priorities. Recall that Congress has asked for such a statement, updated as necessary, to help them make ongoing decisions on legislation and budgets. The next step for the statement has been to assemble, and gain Council approval for the statement drafting team.

Today that hurdle was cleared.

AMS Council approval of the drafting team starts the timer, which under current AMS rules, requires the final version of the Community Priorities Statement to be completed within eight months. But, if their current goals are achieved, it will be completed much sooner.

Since this will be a Policy Statement, the drafting team must be chaired by a member of the AMS Policy Program. APP Director, Bill Hooke is one co-chair and the other is Matt Parker, CCM and Chair of the AMS Board on Enterprise Communications. Filling out the team are AMS Past President (and current Enterprise Commissioner) George Frederick, two current AMS Councilors, a prominent former Office of Management and Budget staff member, and another APP staff member.

The team's goal is ambitious: write, in record time, a draft policy statement that puts forward the highest priorities of our weather and climate community, taken as a whole. The draft statement must be complete enough, correct enough, and well enough written that the AMS Council will approve it for posting for public comment when the Council meets again in January at the AMS Annual Meeting in New Orleans.

Is this "dream" drafting team up to its objective? Time will tell. I, for one, wish them Godspeed.