American Geophysical Union’s (AGU) Atmospheric Sciences section just announced that Massimo Bollasina, a Postdoctoral Research Associate at GFDL, is the recipient of the James R. Holton Junior Scientist Award for 2013. Dr. Bollasina’s research investigates the influence of aerosols and greenhouse gases on regional climate. His novel use of different modeling tools, in conjunction with ground and satellite observational datasets, has yielded important syntheses of theoretical understanding and numerical modeling for practical applications.
Dr. Bollasina’s main focus has been changes in tropical rainfall, a core gap in our understanding of climate change. In a study published last year in Science, he used observational data sets and GFDL’s climate model to look at the effects of natural and anthropogenic forcings on the observed weakening of the South Asian summer monsoon over the last half of the 20st century. This study shows that anthropogenic aerosols, not long-lived greenhouse gases, are the major causal factor.
Dr. Bollasina was in Geneva just last month to accept the WMO’s Norbert Gerbier MUMM International award for best original scientific paper, for this study. He has garnered many other honors, including the “Outstanding Oral Presentation among Early Career and Young Scientists” from WCRP’s Open Science conference in 2011. He was also recognized by the University of Maryland, Department of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences with “Best Doctoral Dissertation” upon receipt of his doctoral degree in 2010.
The James R. Holton Junior Scientist Award was established by AGU’s Atmospheric Sciences section in 2004 to recognize outstanding scientific research and accomplishments of early-career scientists. Only one recipient is chosen each year. The award, which will be presented to Dr. Bollasina at AGU’s Fall Meeting, is named in honor of James Holton, a pioneer in atmospheric dynamics and an inspiration to young scientists.