Old Web Pages: |CIMMS/NSSL|

Prof. David M. Schultz

Centre for Atmospheric Science
School of Earth, Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences
University of Manchester

As scientists largely funded by taxpayers, we have a responsibility to communicate our research to the public. As part of my committment to clearly communicate my science to the public, I am a Public Engagement Ambassador for the National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement.

Other Links:

Manchester Science Spectacular Biography


Our research on occluded cyclones (Schultz and Vaughan 2011) was featured in the Telegraph, on Newstalk Radio in Ireland, and on numerous science-news Web sites. I have been interviewed on BBC Radio Manchester, Radio York, and Radio Tees about ex-Hurricane Katia. Our research on the peer-review process (Roebber and Schultz 2011) was covered by Nature News Online. I have been interviewed by Physics Today and twice by the Barometer Podcast, originating from the Centre for Atmospheric Science at the University of Manchester.

As the only winter-weather expert at NSSL, I was the go-to person to answer questions related to winter weather. I have done interviews with the Norman Transcript and Maxim magazine. My research on "Does it rain more on the weekends?" - first published in the science humor journal Annals of Improbable Research (Schultz 1998) and later published in Geophysical Research Letters (Schultz et al. 2007) - has also been covered by the Helsingin Sanomat. I have given television interviews about the IPEX field program and the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. For eight years, I was a contributor to Canoe & Kayak magazine, writing the WeatherWatch column eight times a year.

Sting Jet Coverage (May 2013)
University of Manchester press release
Youtube video of me discussing the findings
Scienceomega.com - a very professional interview with me
NBC News
The Telegraph article

Heavy rains in July 2012 (Guardian)

Fishing Films and Facts Podcast Episode 71: Wind and Waves

15 December 2011, Physics Today interview about the first issue of the Journal of Geophysical Research.

10 May 2011, Nature: How to succeed with grant applications, interview.

Does it rain more on weekends?
7 December 2007, Nature: Does it rain less on the weekend?
13 December 2007, Helsinki Sanomat article
24 December 2007, Improbable Research post about "Does it rain more on the weekends?"

New Conceptual Model of Occluded Cyclones:
American Weather link
Science Daily
Watt's Up With That?
YouTube interview

The Barometer Podcast:
The Barometer Podcast Live: Weather and Climate
The Barometer Podcast: Monsooner or Later


Why Do Good Weather Forecasts Go Bad? How Forecasts are Made, And What Scientists Are Doing to Make Them Better
17 March 2012: Cafe Scientifique. York, UK
13 March 2012: York Philosophical Society. Easingwold, UK
19 Oct 2010: The Herbert Read Lecture, York Philosophical Society. York, UK

21 Sept 2007: How weather observations are used to make forecasts. GLOBE Conference, U.S. Embassy, Helsinki, Finland
Feb 2005: Lighting the fire within: A Norman meteorologist goes to the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. Norman Exchange Club. Norman, Oklahoma.
23 Sept 2004: Snow in the western United States: How it forms, how we forecast and research it, and the prospects for big powder days this winter. Oklahoma City Ski Club. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
May 2002: Lightning and lightning safety. Oklahoma City Outdoor Network. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma


A large component of my research has been to bridge the gap between research meteorologists and operational forecasters (Steenburgh et al. 2012). I am passionate about this topic in order to raise the level of knowledge that most forecasters have (Stuart et al. 2007) and thereby raise the quality of the science. Because most forecasters are not rewarded in their job for publishing, our meteorological community loses by not hearing their perspectives, which can be quite valuable given the depth with which forecasters examine the weather every day. Having forecasters publish their research advances the field and alerts researchers to operationally relevant questions that require answers. Through these interactions, information and technology can be exchanged between the two groups.

I can quantify my activities through the following metrics:

In 2007, I requested and received €100,000 from the Research Director at the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) to build the Aurinko Collaboratory, a room with facilities designed to break down the barriers between researchers and forecasters. The laboratory consists of multiple workstations and connections for laptops to enable interactive weather discussions between researchers, software developers, and operational forecasters.

Training Forecasters:


In Finland, my professorship was funded by three organizations: the university, FMI (a governmental agency responsible for producing weather forecasts), and Vaisala Oyj (the world's leading manufacturer of meteorological instrumentation and solutions). For Vaisala, my responsibility was to provide scientific guidance and support for different business projects for the company. I played one of the leading roles in scientific guidance, use, and promotion of the Helsinki Testbed mesoscale meteorological observing network (Koskinen et al. 2011). I also supervised two students funded by Vaisala on their Masters' dissertations, including one on improving their weather instrument package to better serve as a disdrometer (instrument to measure raindrop size distributions). I also have given two invited presentations at Vaisala's requests.

Finally, the best forecasts are meaningless if they are not received, understood, and heeded by the public. Thus, the ultimate knowledge exchange is with the public. I have been collaborating with social scientists to better understand how people respond to weather situations, forecasts, and warnings (Barnes et al. 2007; Schultz et al. 2010) and have been surveying European countries to find out how they issue severe thunderstorm warnings (Rauhala and Schultz 2009). My work continues at Manchester with an ongoing study involving an undergraduate student to look at how the public might use probabilistic weather forecasts.

Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles on Knowledge Exchange and Technology Transfer

Peer-Reviewed Book Chapters on Knowledge Exchange

Non-Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles on Knowledge Exchange and Technology Transfer

Last update: 17 July 2016