The John Carlson Lecture

The John Carlson Lecture communicates exciting new results in climate science to the general public. Free of charge and open to the general public, the lecture is made possible by a generous gift from MIT alumnus John H. Carlson to the Lorenz Center in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, MIT. 

Update on the 2020/2021 Lecture
On Thursday, September 30, 2021, the EAPS community and Dr. Abbot of the University of Chicago were informed that the Carlson Lecture and associated outreach program would not be held this year and that Dr. Abbot remained invited to present his scientific work at MIT. The department has worked with him to finalize details of his visit, which is now set for May 4, 2022.



Past Lectures

2019: Professor Laura Robinson, professor of geochemistry, University of Bristol
Deep Sea Corals and Their Climate Secrets

2018: Professor John Grotzinger, professor of geology and geobiology, and the division chair for Geological and Planetary Sciences, at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
Searching for Ancient Life on Mars

2017: Professor Susan Solomon, Lee and Geraldine Martin Professor of Environmental Studies
A Brief History of Environmental Successes

2016: Professor Richard Alley, Evan Pugh Professor of Geosciences at Penn. State
Big Ice: Antarctica, Greenland and Boston

2015: Professor Bjorn StevensDirector of the Atmosphere in the Earth System Department at the Max-Planck-Institute for Meteorology, and professor at the University of Hamburg
Watching Water: Nature's Field Guide to Weather and Climate


2014: Professor Peter Molnar, Professor of Geological Sciences, University of Colorado at Boulder, Fellow, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, Boulder, CO
Big Cats, Panamá, and Armadillos: A Story of Climate and Life


2013: Professor John Wettlaufer, Professor of Applicable Mathematics at Oxford and the A.M. Bateman Professor of Applied Mathematics, Geophysics and Physics at Yale
Sea Ice, Climate and Observational Mathematics


2012: Professor Timothy Palmer, Royal Society Professor of Climate Physics at UK's Oxford University
Predicting Climate in a Chaotic World: How Certain Can We Be?


2011: Professor Paul Hoffman, Sturgis Hooper Professor of Geology Emeritus at Harvard University
Earth's Surprising Climate History