Join us for Climate Week NYC 2014

The International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI) is co-hosting several events during Climate Week NYC 2014. See the schedule of IRI events below, and follow the links for more information. If you are a member of the media and would like to attend any of the events, please write to media @

Sustaining Health
Linking Environment, Nutrition and Health

Monday, September 22
2:30 pm – 6 pm
Columbia Club

How should we rethink health in light of climate change and other environmental challenges? IRI’s Madeleine Thomson will join an interactive expert discussion to explore the interface between nutrition, environment and health, and how science and technology can address the challenges we face. The Wellcome Trust, the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, the International Research Institute for Climate and Society and Meteos are co-hosting the event. Invited panelists and an expert audience of IPCC authors, business, NGOs, social entrepreneurs and foundations will explore the issues and provide inputs on climate change and health to the Wellcome Trust’s Sustaining Health dialogue.


Kirk R. Smith Professor of Global Environmental Health, University of California, Berkeley; and Convening Lead Author of ‘Human Health: Impacts, Adaptation, and Co-benefits,’ the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report
Steve Davis CEO, PATH
Ricardo Fuentes Nieva Head of Research, Oxfam GB
Patrick Kinney Professor of Environmental Health Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University
Madeleine Thomson Senior Research Scientist, IRI, The Earth Institute; and Senior Research Scholar, Environmental Health Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University 

What Is Climate Science?
International Center of Photography

Monday, September 22
3 pm
International Center of Photography Museum
1133 Avenue of the Americas

This fall, the photographs of Sebastião Salgado provide the springboard for an ambitious program of panel discussions, lectures and film screenings addressing the urgent issue of climate change. During Climate Week and continuing through mid-December, ICP will organize a variety of events in partnership with Columbia University’s International Research Institute for Climate and SocietyLamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and The Human Impacts Institute, Brooklyn.

“What is Climate Science?”, a lecture by Lamont’s Peter deMenocal, will be held on Monday, September 22 at 3 pm as part of the opening sequence of events. The museum will be open, admission free, on that day from 10 am–1 pm. Panels involving IRI’s Lisa Goddard, Haresh Bhojwani and Francesco Fiondella will continue through the fall, and Friday-evening gallery walk-throughs with Alessandra Giannini, Kátia Fernandes as well as scientists from Lamont will contextualize Salgado’s photographs, region by region.


Climate Risk Forum
Building Innovative and Sustainable Index Insurance Markets

Wednesday, September 24
9 am – 12:30 pm
James Room, Barnard College
3009 Broadway

IRI’s Daniel Osgood will join a panel of high-profile speakers to discuss index-insurance markets for weather-related risks in developing countries. The forum, co-hosted by IRI and the World Bank Group’s Global Index Insurance Facility, will include a keynote address, followed by a panel discussion and concluded with a question and answer session. Coffee, tea and lunch will be served. The panel will discuss questions such as: Can index insurance become a viable commercial sector? How can index insurance help farmers increase their income and assets with the threat of a changing climate? Is index insurance relevant for sustained food security? What is the role of reinsurance companies in scaling up index insurance markets? What are some benefits to bundling index insurance with other products?


Richard Choularton Senior Policy Officer, World Food Programme
Paula Pagniez Senior Microinsurance Specialist, Swiss Re
Alexandre Scherer, CEO, Axa America Corporate Solutions
Daniel Osgood Lead Scientist, Financial Instruments, IRI, The Earth Institute
Gary Reusche Senior Program Manager, International Finance Corporation
Jon Hellin Poverty Specialist, International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center, CGIAR

The Climate-Weather Connection
A Workshop for International Weather Presenters

Wednesday, September 24
10 am – 4 pm
Algonquin Hotel

Broadcast meteorologists and weather presenters can serve as highly effective communicators on climate change. They are well known to television viewers, generally liked and trusted, and are recognized as experts on the weather and extreme events through which people generally experience climate.  IRI has teamed up with the World Meteorological Organization and Climate Central to run a climate-science boot camp for a group of visiting international broadcast meteorologists who are in New York as part of WMO’s “weather reports from the future” initiative, meant to raise awareness of what could lie in store because of climate change.

IRI’s Lisa Goddard and Simon Mason will be part of a panel discussion on “Climate, Weather and Beyond” while Alessandra Giannini, Tufa Dinku, Paula González and Erica Allis will provide a short overview of region-based impacts and adaptation strategies around the globe. The event also brings high-level international speakers, including Michel Jarraud, the Secretary-General of WMO, Christiana Figueres, the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and Thomas Stocker from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Colloquium on Forests and Climate
New Thinking for Transformational Change

Wednesday, September 24
1 pm – 5 pm
Alfred Lerner Hall
Columbia University

President Obama’s science adviser, John Holdren, an expert on environment and technology policy, will be one of six international thought leaders on a panel that will explore ways to bring about the lasting change needed to tackle climate change and related socio-environmental problems. IRI’s Lisa Goddard will also speak at the event, which is being sponsored by the Center for International Forestry and the Earth Institute.

The thought leaders will present their responses in a special high-level scientific debate. Following the presentations, participants will join leading climate and forestry experts in debating these fresh ideas, charting the future direction of climate research – and envisioning bold initiatives in forestry, landscapes and sustainability to improve the lives of millions.

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