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The Past as Prologue – Michael Mann

Dr. Michael Mann is going to give a talk at the CUNY Graduate Center, Thursday May 9th. The talk will be on the 4th Floor in the Science Center, room 4102. This talk will start at 530pm. As usual, after the talk we’ll have an informal reception.

Michael Mann

Penn State University Climatologist Michael Mann. After: Physicist and climatologist Michael Mann. Photograph:

Michael Mann is a well known climate researcher who’s 1998 publication “Global-scale temperature patterns and climate forcing over the past six centuries” (pdf) is the source of the famous (well, famous as statistical graphs go) “Hockey Stick” graph.




The Hockey Stick Graph. After IPCC TAR WG1 (2001) Figure 5.

A version of the “Hockey Stick Graph”., showing temperatures more or less stable for the past millenium, and then sharply spiking upwards in the modern era. After IPCC TAR WG1 (2001) Figure 5. 


The subject of the talk, however, is “The Past as Prologue”. Dr. Mann will review work over the past decade aimed at establishing the nature of, and factors underlying, patterns of large-scale climate variability in past centuries.  He will discuss evidence from proxy climate reconstructions spanning the past millennium, the comparison of proxy reconstructions with simulations with climate model simulations forced by past natural and anthropogenic forcing, and results from climate modeling experiments in which proxy evidence is assimilated directly into coupled ocean-atmosphere model simulations. He will also discuss recent work suggesting the possibility that equilibrium climate sensitivity may have been underestimated in some past studies comparing model simulations and paleoclimate reconstructions.


This will be a moderately technical talk, which is appropriate since the students that organize the GEOS talks as PhD candidates within the Earth & Environmental Sciences program. However, Dr. Mann has explained that he expects to talk about other issues related to his research. So non-academics are certainly welcome and can expect an exciting talk!

If you can’t make it to the Grad Center for the talk, you can also check it out on our livestreaming channel:


Click here for a Flyer with more information (pdf)

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