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Philippe Ciais

Philippe Ciais

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Professor +357 22 208 667

Philippe Ciais is a researcher in the field of the global carbon cycle and other biogeochemical cycles, and their interactions with climate change and society. He studied Physics at Ecole Normale Supérieure and received a PhD in 1991 entitled “Holocene climate record of Antarctic ice cores”. At the LSCE, he acted successively as director of a research department (staff 100) and deputy director of the institute between 2002 and 2017 across three tutelary institutions the CEA French Atomic Energy Commission, the CNRS National Research Council and the UVSQ University of Versailles St Quentin.

From 2005 to 2013, Philippe Ciais coordinated the European coordination of the Integrated Carbon Observation System (ICOS) large-scale research infrastructure; going from national and European auditions, to technical preparation work, and the negotiation of the governance and funding leverage involving stakeholders and ministry representatives in 17 countrieesPhilippe Ciais co-chaired the Global Carbon Project international organization in 2009. He had the opportunity to contribute to several synthesis of recent trends in the carbon cycle, characterized by the recent fast growth of emissions and by a slowing trend of natural sinks, a finding that had a large impact in the media. He acted as Convening Lead Author of the IPCC Working Group 1, for the Carbon Cycle chapter of the 5th IPCC Assessment Report.

Philippe Ciais research activity during the last twenty years, has enabled significant step forwards to understand the relationships between terrestrial greenhouse gas fluxes and climate, combining ecosystem models with satellite and eddy-covariance observations. He took part in the set up and interpretation of one of the first coupled carbon-climate simulation with the IPSL climate model, and pioneered the incorporation of managed ecosystems in global ecosystem models. By combining eddy-flux and remote sensing data, with models, Philippe Ciais analyzed the responses of temperate forests to drought during the summer 2003 heat wave and of boreal ecosystems during warmer autumns. These two publications received a lot of citations. A remarkable collaboration with Beijing University has been established through the SINO-FRENCH SOFIE research institute. 

Currently 55 years old, Philippe Ciais has authored 962 publications in A-ranking journals, cited ≈ 90900 times. He was ranked as the most productive scientific author in the field of climate change, and among the authors who contributed to 5 of the 100 most influential papers in this field (

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