Nathan Lenssen

Nathan Lenssen

Research Interest


I use climate physics, observational and model data, and statistics to better understand the natural variability and predictability of the climate system.

My work at the International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI) investigates how observed El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) impacts can be used to improve our quantification of seasonal forecast skill. Looking at longer timescales, I am exploring how better representations of of climate variability in statistical and dynamical models can lead to more skillful seasonal-to-decadal prediction.

At NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), I focus on the observational uncertainty in the global temperature record and how this uncertainty affects our understanding of climate change and climate impacts.

In addition to my research, I am passionate about climate education for all ages. Recently, I am the co-lead of the IRI's K-12 outreach initiative and have developed a course titled "Impacts of Climate Change on Humans in NYC" which will be offered through DEES for Columbia undergraduates in Spring 2022.

Research Groups: International Research Institute for Climate and SocietyNASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies


B.A. in Mathematics (2013, Claremont McKenna College)

B.A. in Physics (2013, Claremont McKenna College)

M.A. in Statistics (2017, Columbia University)