Climate and Weather Extremes Seminar

A cross-departmental quasi-monthly meeting to bring together early career and senior scientists that work on extremes research at PIK.
Climate and Weather Extremes Seminar
Hurricane Matthew over Haiti (NASA terra satellite 4th Oct. 2016)

Research on climate and weather extremes is a fundamental part of research at PIK and is carried out in different forms in every department. Extreme climate and weather events pose a serious threat to both the environment and society. Every year, heat waves, wild fires, hurricanes, extreme rainfall events, wind storms and droughts affect people in many parts of the world, causing economic damages and endangering human lives. 2022 saw extreme heat in Western Europe, China and Pakistan while Pakistan was hit by extreme monsoon rains and Himalayan glaciers melting which resulted in a country wide flood killing more than 1700 people and causing $15 billion of damage. While extremes would happen also in a stable climate, anthropogenic induced climate change has already increased the severity and frequency of certain specific extreme events, above all, extreme heat waves in the mid-latitudes and subtropical regions.

Heatwave July 2006: land surface temperature anomaly wrt 2000-2012 (derived from Modis Terra, creative commons).
Heatwave July 2006: land surface temperature
anomaly wrt 2000-2012 (derived from Modis
Terra, creative commons).

The scope of this cross-departmental quasi-monthly meeting is to bring together early career and senior scientists that work on extremes research at PIK, and outside PIK.

This seminar covers a broad list of topics, from atmosphere dynamics and the meteorological patterns which cause extreme weather events, to impacts of such extremes on agriculture, infrastructures, economy and society, to newly developed methods to analyze rare and impactful extreme events. The aim of this seminar is not only to reach a PIK wide audience but also to facilitate learning from one another and fostercollaboration across different groups and research departments. To achieve this goal, when feasible, we intend to organise pairs of 20’ presentations thematically linked but presented by researchers from different research department.

The seminar is held online and in presence about one per month. Everyone is invited to attend and the program for each meeting is sent around a week in advance to If you would like to present your research or would like to propose an external presenter, please get in touch with Giorgia Di Capua ( or Norbert Marwan (

Next seminar

19. March 2024, 14:00
(A31 Great Copulal)


  1. Tobias Geiger (DWD): TBA

Past seminars

31. Januar 2024

  1. Nicolas Merener (Associate Professor, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella, Buenos Aires, Argentina): Extreme Dry Spells and Larger Storms in the U.S. Midwest Raise Crop Prices

  2. Raed Hamed (postdoc at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam): Climate storylines for assessing compound events and extreme crop impacts

10. Januar 2024

  1. Yinglin Tian (PhD student at the Tsinghua University and currently visiting student at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, UFZ, Leipzig): Changes in causal effect networks of single and compound extreme hot and dry events in Central Europe
  2. Giorgia Di Capua (postdoc, RD1): PREVENT: a new PIK-based project on climate change in the Meditarranean

20. November 2023

  1. Dr. Elisa Manzini (Max-Planck-Institut für Meteorologie in Hamburg): Forcing of sudden stratospheric warming events by atmosphere – ocean interactions
  2. Dr. Daniela Matei (Max-Planck-Institut für Meteorologie in Hamburg): Towards an MPI-ESM-ER "eddy-resolving" climate prediction system: Predicting the 2015 subpolar record "Cold-Blob" and its impacts

17. October 2023

  1. Melinda Galfi (assistant professor at the Institute for Environmental Studies, Vrije Universitejt Amsterdam): Typicality of extreme events
  2. Lars Aue (PhD student, AWI Potsdam): Cyclone impacts on sea ice in the Atlantic Arctic Ocean

21. September 2023

  1. Anja Katzenberger (PhD candidate RD4): Monsoon Planet: Bimodal rainfall distribution due to barrier-structure in pressure field
  2. Fred Hattermann (Deputy head RD2): Trends in hydro-climatic extremes: Observations, climate attribution and projections

29. June 2023

  1. Domenico Giaquinto (PhD candidate RD4): "Exploring European meteorological droughts through complex networks"
  2. Ze Jiang (guest at GFZ, research assistant at UNSW Sydney): "Implications of spectral transformations in hydro-climatology"

25. Mai 2023

  1. Luisa Aviles (soon PhD candidate at BAS – Cambridge): "Causal Drivers Behind Enhanced Rainfall Activity Over Northern India"
  2. Felix Strnad (PhD candidate at Uni Tübingen): "Propagation pathways of South Asian rainfall extremes and their connection to the large-scale circulation"

20. April 2023

  1. Massoud Rostami (RD1): "A novel theory for the genesis and dynamics of Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO)-like structures"
  2. Norbert Marwan and Tobias Braun (RD4): "Power spectrum estimation for extreme events data"

9. February 2023

  1. Shraddha Gupta (RD4): "A Complex Network approach to understanding Cyclones"
  2. Thomas Vogt (RD3): "Modeling of historic and future impacts from tropical cyclones on a global scale"

8. December 2022

  1. Giorgia Di Capua (RD1): "Compound extreme events, tropical – extratropical interactions and causality"
  2. Norbert Marwan (RD4): “Methods for Extreme Events Time Series“

Who’s working on extremes related research topics at PIK


Giorgia Di Capua (causality, monsoon, tropical-extratropical interactions)
Massoud Rostami (Aeolus, MJO, atmospheric dynamics)


Sabine Undorf (climate extremes, attribution, impacts)
Fred Hattermann (Hydro-climatic extremes,impact, adaptation)


Thomas Vogt (economic impacts of tropical cyclones)
Maximilian Kotz (economic impacts of extremes / attribution )


Norbert Marwan (complex methods for extremes)
Jürgen Kurths (complex methods for extremes)
Anja Katzenberger (Indian summer monsoon)
Felix Strnad (extreme rainfall, AMOC, early warning)
Shraddha Gupta (complex networks, tropical cyclones)
Jianxin Zhang (flood events, teleconnections)