Dr. Laurence S. Kalkstein

Synoptic Climatology Lab

Center for Climatic Research
Department of Geography - University of Delaware
List of Publications

     Dr. Laurence S. Kalkstein is a Senior Research Fellow in the University of Delaware’s Center for Climatic Research.  He received his undergraduate degree from Rutgers University and his Masters and Ph.D. from Louisiana State University. 

     He is the principal investigator on a number of contracts dealing with the assessment, development and implementation of heat/health watch-warning systems for major cities worldwide.  These systems are funded by both private and government organizations such as NOAA/National Weather Service, US EPA, various electrical utilities, and local health departments. There are currently plans for collaboration with the NWS to develop heat/health systems for every major city in the United States.  In addition, he is studying the relationship between climate and asthma in conjunction with the U.S. EPA and the City of Philadelphia. 

     Dr. Kalkstein and his team have also been involved in the development of various weather indices for use in applied climatological analysis.  These include air mass-based synoptic classifications and the development of a relative climatological index, the "Heat Stress Index" (funded by NOAA/National Climatic Data Center).  As a consultant for Combe, Inc. he has developed summer and winter dry skin indices, as well as sting and chap forecasts, which are posted daily on the web.

     In addition, Dr. Kalkstein and his colleagues at the Synoptic Climatology Laboratory are embarking on research with the US EPA to develop cool initiatives to lower urban structural temperatures with the hope of saving the lives of people vulnerable to heat stress.   He is also working with the EPA to develop a standardized set of intervention measures for cities when heat emergencies are called. 

International Journal of Biometerology
International Society of Biometerology
NOAA/National Climatic Data Center
NOAA/National Weather Service
World Health Organization
World Meterological Organization

      Dr. Kalkstein has established a Collaborating Centre status between his University and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and a similar collaborative agreement has been developed with the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).  The Collaborating Centre agreement involves the construction of heat/health watch warning systems for several international cities known as the "Showcase Projects".  The first two selected cities are Rome and Shanghai, and their systems are currently in operation.  Dr. Kalkstein and his colleagues have developed several more systems over the past year for major Italian cities.  As a result, the WMO appointed Dr. Kalkstein leader of its expert team on operational heat/health warnings.  The team will concentrate on technology transfer to vulnerable cities around the world.

     Dr. Kalkstein is president of the International Society of Biometeorology, the largest biometeorological organization in the world.  The ISB deals with wide-ranging research involving the impact of weather upon animals, plants, and particularly human health and well-being.   For example, the Synoptic Climatology Laboratory is conducting research for the US Forest Service to determine the meteorological causes for the spread of a pine fungus in the Rocky Mountains, a project perfectly suited for the ISB.
     Throughout his career, he has published well over 100 peer-reviewed manuscripts and book chapters in leading climatological, geographical, and medical journals and has been editor for two major climatological journals: Climate Research and the International Journal of Biometeorology.  


Return to the Synoptic Climatology Lab website


Copyright © University of Delaware, 2005 March.
Comments, suggestions, or questions may be sent here.