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David Schimel

Photo of David Schimel


4800 Oak Grove Drive
M/S 233-300

Pasadena, CA 91109



Curriculum Vitae:

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Member of:

Carbon Cycle And Ecosystems

Group Supervisor


  • B.A., Hampshire College, Amherst, Massachusetts (1977)
  • Ph.D., Colorado State University, Fort Collins (1982)

Professional Experience

  • Research Scientist, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, Calif. (2012-Present)
  • Chief Science Officer and Principal Investigator, NEON. (2011-2012)
  • CEO, and Principal Investigator National Ecological Observatory, Inc. (2007-2011)
  • Senior Scientist, National Center for Atmospheric Research (1995-2009)
  • Professor and Director, Max-Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry (1997-2002)
  • Senior Research Scientist, NREL, Colorado State University (Affiliate) (1995-present)
  • National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR)
    • Section Head, Climate and Global Dynamics Division, (1992-1997)
    • Scientist, (1992-1995)
  • Project Scientist, Climate System Modeling Program, UCAR (1990-1995)
  • Associate Professor, Department of Forest & Wood Science, Colorado State University (1989-1995)
  • National Research Council Senior Fellow, NASA/Ames Research Center (1988-1989)
  • Colorado State University
    • Research Associate, NREL, Colorado State University (1983-1986)
    • Postdoctoral Fellow, NREL, Colorado State University (1982-1983)
    • Graduate Research Assistant, NREL, Colorado State University (1979-1982)
  • Research Associate, The Marine Biological Laboratory, Ecosystems Center, Woods Hole, Massachusetts (1977-1979)
  • Statistical Consultant, University of Massachusetts, Research Computing Center, Amherst, Massachusetts (1976-1977)

Selected Awards

  • Fellow, Ecological Society of America (2012)
  • Nobel Peace Prize, (IPCC Convening Lead Author) (2007)
  • Fellow, American Geophysical Union
  • Founding Director, Max-Planck-Institute for Biogeochemistry
  • External Member, Max Planck Society (Germany)
  • Elected Member, Ecology Institute, (Germany)
  • National Research Council Senior Fellow at NASA/Ames Research Center (1988-89)
  • Most Publications Award at the Natural Resource Ecology Lab, Colorado State University (1994)
  • ISI Highly Cited Researcher

Selected Publications

  1. Xu L, Saatchi SS, Yang Y, Yu Y, Pongratz J, Bloom AA, Bowman K, Worden J, Liu J, Yin Y, Domke G. Changes in global terrestrial live biomass over the 21st century. Science Advances. 2021 Jul 1;7(27):eabe9829.
  2. Worden J, Saatchi S, Keller M, Bloom AA, Liu J, Parazoo N, Fisher JB, Bowman K, Reager JT, Fahy K, Schimel D. Satellite Observations of the Tropical Terrestrial Carbon Balance and Interactions with the Water Cycle During the 21st Century. Reviews of Geophysics. 2021 Mar;59(1):e2020RG000711.
  3. Liu J, Baskaran L, Bowman K, Schimel D, Bloom AA, Parazoo NC, Oda T, Carroll D, Menemenlis D, Joiner J, Commane R. Carbon Monitoring System Flux Net Biosphere Exchange 2020 (CMS-Flux NBE 2020). Earth System Science Data Discussions. 2020 Jul 7:1-53.
  4. Carroll D, Menemenlis D, Adkins JF, Bowman KW, Brix H, Dutkiewicz S, Fenty I, Gierach MM, Hill C, Jahn O, Landschützer P. The ECCO‐Darwin Data‐assimilative Global Ocean Biogeochemistry Model: Estimates of Seasonal to Multi‐decadal Surface Ocean pCO2 and Air‐sea CO2 Flux. Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems. 2020 Jul 26:e2019MS001888.
  5. Schneider FD, Ferraz AA, Hancock S, Duncanson LI, Dubayah RO, Pavlick RP, Schimel DS. Towards mapping the diversity of canopy structure from space with GEDI. Environmental Research Letters. 2020
  6. Bloom AA, Bowman KW, Liu J, Konings AG, Worden JR, Parazoo NC, Meyer V, Reager JT, Worden HM, Jiang Z, Quetin GR. Lagged effects dominate the inter-annual variability of the 2010–2015 tropical carbon balance. Biogeosciences Discussions. 2020 Jan 8:1-49.
  7. Schneider, F. D., A. Ferraz, and D. Schimel (2019), Watching Earth’s interconnected systems at work, Eos, 100, Published on 31 October 2019
  8. Whelan AM, Schimel DS. Authorship and Gender in ESA Journals. Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America. 2019 Jul 1;100(3):1-9.
  9. Magney TS, Bowling DR, Logan BA, Grossmann K, Stutz J, Blanken PD, Burns SP, Cheng R, Garcia MA, Kӧhler P, Lopez S, Parazoo, N, Raczka, B, Schimel, D, and Frankenberg, C. Mechanistic evidence for tracking the seasonality of photosynthesis with solar-induced fluorescence. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 2019 Jun 11;116(24):11640-5.
  10. Schimel, D, F Schneider and JPL Carbon and Ecosystem Participants. 2019. Flux towers in the sky: global ecology from space. New Phytologist,
  11. Gaubert B, Stephens BB, Basu S, Chevallier F, Deng F, Kort EA, Patra PK, Peters W, Rödenbeck C, Saeki T, Schimel D. Global atmospheric CO 2 inverse models converging on neutral tropical land exchange, but disagreeing on fossil fuel and atmospheric growth rate. Biogeosciences. 2019 Jan 16;16(1):117-34.
  12. Garonna I, de Jong R, Stöckli R, Schmid B, Schenkel D, Schimel D, Schaepman ME. Shifting relative importance of climatic constraints on land surface phenology. Environmental Research Letters. 2018 Feb 12;13(2):024025.
  13. Fox AM, Hoar TJ, Anderson JL, Arellano AF, Smith WK, Litvak ME, MacBean N, Schimel DS, Moore DJ. Evaluation of a Data Assimilation System for Land Surface Models using CLM4. 5. Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems. 2018 Oct;10(10):2471-94.
  14. Liu J, Bowman KW, Schimel D, Parazoo NC, Jiang Z, Lee M, Bloom AA, Wunch D, Frankenberg C, Sun Y, Odell CW. Response to Comment on "Contrasting carbon cycle responses of the tropical continents to the 2015-2016 El Niño". Science. 2018 Nov 30;362(6418)
  15. Jeong SJ, Bloom AA, Schimel D, Sweeney C, Parazoo NC, Medvigy D, Schaepman-Strub G, Zheng C, Schwalm CR, Huntzinger DN, Michalak AM. Accelerating rates of Arctic carbon cycling revealed by long-term atmospheric CO2 measurements. Science Advances. 2018 Jul 1;4(7)
  16. Stavros EN, Coen J, Peterson B, Singh H, Kennedy K, Ramirez C, Schimel D. Use of imaging spectroscopy and LIDAR to characterize fuels for fire behavior prediction. Remote Sensing Applications: Society and Environment. 2018 Aug 1;11:41-50.
  17. Cawse-Nicholson K, Fisher JB, Famiglietti CA, Braverman A, Schwandner FM, Lewicki JL, Townsend PA, Schimel DS, Pavlick R, Bormann KJ, Ferraz A. Ecosystem responses to elevated CO2 using airborne remote sensing at Mammoth Mountain, California. Biogeosciences. 2018 Dec 14;15(24):7403-18.
  18. Sellers PJ, Schimel DS, Moore B, Liu J, Eldering A. Observing carbon cycle-climate feedbacks from space. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 2018 Jul 9:201716613.
  19. Eldering, A., P.O. Wennberg, D. Crisp, D. Schimel, M.R. Gunson, A. Chatterjee, J. Liu, F. Schwandner, Y. Sun, C.W. O'Dell, C. Frankenberg, T. Taylor, B. Fisher, G.B. Osterman, D. Wunch, J. Hakkarainen, J. Tamminen. Evaluation of the flux of carbon dioxide to and from the atmosphere: The Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 Early Science Investigations. Science 2017 Oct 13; 358 (6360).
  20. Chatterjee A, Gierach MM, Sutton AJ, Feely RA, Crisp D, Eldering A, Gunson MR, O'dell CW, Stephens BB, Schimel DS. Influence of El Niño on atmospheric CO2 over the tropical Pacific Ocean: Findings from NASA's OCO-2 mission. Science. 2017 Oct 13; 358(6360)
  21. Liu J, Bowman KW, Schimel DS, Parazoo NC, Jiang Z, Lee M, Bloom AA, Wunch D, Frankenberg C, Sun Y, O'Dell CW. Contrasting carbon cycle responses of the tropical continents to the 2015-2016 El Ni ño. Science. 2017 Oct 13; 358(6360)
  22. Sun, Y., C. Frankenberg, J. Wood3, M. Jung, L. Guanter, D. Schimel, D. Drewry, M. Verma, A. Porcar-Castell, T. Griffis, L. Gu, T. Magney, P. Köhler, B. Evans . OCO-2 advances photosynthesis observation from space via solar-induced chlorophyll fluorescence. Science, 2017, Oct 13; 358 (6360)
  23. Schwandner , Florian M., Michael R. Gunson, Charles E. Miller, Simon A. Carn, Annmarie E. Eldering, Thomas Krings, David S. Schimel, Hai M. Nguyen, David Crisp, Christopher W. O'Dell, Gregory B. Osterman, Debra Wunch, Paul O. Wennberg, Coleen M. Roehl, Laura T. Iraci, James R. Podolske. Space-Borne Detection of Carbon Dioxide Localized Sources. Science, Oct 13; 358 (6360)
  24. Konings AG, Yu Y, Xu L, Yang Y, Schimel DS, Saatchi SS. 2017. Active microwave observations of diurnal and seasonal variations of canopy water content across the humid African tropical forests. Geophysical Research Letters. In press.
  25. Fisher, J.B., Melton, F., Middleton, E., Hain, C., Anderson, M., Allen, R., McCabe, M., Hook, S., Baldocchi, D.D., Townsend, P.A., Kilic, A., S., Tu, K.P., Miralles, D., Perret, J., Lagouarde, J.-P., Waliser, D., Purdy, A.J., French, A., Schimel, D., Famiglietti, J., Stephens, G., Wood, E.F., 2017. The Future of Evapotranspiration: Global requirements for ecosystem functioning, carbon and climate feedbacks, agricultural management, and water resources. Water Resources Research 53,
  26. Fisher JB, et al. The future of evapotranspiration: Global requirements for ecosystem functioning, carbon and climate feedbacks, agricultural management, and water resources. Water Resources Research. 2017 Apr 1;53(4):2618-26.
  27. Konings AG, Yu Y, Xu L, Yang Y, Schimel DS, Saatchi SS. Active microwave observations of diurnal and seasonal variations of canopy water content across the humid African tropical forests. Geophysical Research Letters. 2017 Mar 16;44(5):2290-9.
  28. Verma, M., David Schimel, Bradley Evans, Christian Frankenberg, Jason Beringer, Darren T. Drewry, Troy Magney, Ian Marang, Lindsay Hutley, Caitlin Moore and AM Eldering. 2017, Effect of environmental conditions on the relationship between solar induced fluorescence and gross primary productivity at an OzFlux grassland site, J. Geophys. Res. Biogeosci., 122 (3): 716-733
  29. Stavros EN, Tane Z, Kane VR, Veraverbeke S, McGaughey RJ, Lutz JA, Ramírez C, Schimel D. Unprecedented remote sensing data over King and Rim megafires in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California. Ecology. 2016 Nov 1;97(11):3244-3244.
  30. Jeong SJ, Schimel D, Frankenberg C, Drewry DT, Fisher JB, Verma M, Berry JA, Lee JE, Joiner J. Application of satellite solar-induced chlorophyll fluorescence to understanding large-scale variations in vegetation phenology and function over northern high latitude forests. 2017. Remote Sensing of Environment;190:178-87.
  31. Bloom AA, Lauvaux T, Worden J, Yadav V, Duren R, Sander SP, Schimel DS. What are the greenhouse gas observing system requirements for reducing fundamental biogeochemical process uncertainty? Amazon wetland CH 4 emissions as a case study. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics. 2016 Dec 8;16(23):15199-218.
  32. Schimel D, Sellers P, Moore III B, Chatterjee A, Baker D, Berry J, Bowman K, Crisp PC, Crowell S, Denning S, Duren R. et al, Observing the carbon-climate system. 2016, arXiv preprint arXiv:1604.02106. 2016 Apr 7.
  33. Jetz W, Cavender-Bares J, Pavlick R, Schimel D, Davis FW, Asner GP, Guralnick R, Kattge J, Latimer AM, Moorcroft P, Schaepman ME. Monitoring plant functional diversity from space. Nature Plants. 2016 Mar 2;2:16024.
  34. Schimel, D, K. Hibbard, D. Costa, P. Cox, S. van der Leeuw. 2015, Analysis, integration and modeling of the Earth system (AIMES), Anthropocene, 12 pp. 99-106
  35. Bloom, A.A., Worden, J., Jiang, Z., Worden, H., Kurosu, T., Frankenberg, C. and Schimel, D., 2015. Remote‐sensing constraints on South America fire traits by Bayesian fusion of atmospheric and surface data. Geophysical Research Letters, 42(4), pp.1268-1274.
  36. Schimel, D. and Keller, M., 2015. Big questions, big science: meeting the challenges of global ecology. Oecologia, 177(4), pp.925-934.
  37. Saatchi, S., Mascaro, J., Xu, L., Keller, M., Yang, Y., Duffy, P., Espírito‐Santo, F., Baccini, A., Chambers, J. and Schimel, D., 2015. Seeing the forest beyond the trees. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 24(5), pp.606-610.
  38. Schimel, D., Stephens, B.B. and Fisher, J.B., 2015. Effect of increasing CO2 on the terrestrial carbon cycle. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 112(2), pp.436-441.
  39. Schimel, D., Pavlick, R., Fisher, J.B., Asner, G.P., Saatchi, S., Townsend, P., Miller, C., Frankenberg, C., Hibbard, K. and Cox, P., 2015. Observing terrestrial ecosystems and the carbon cycle from space. Global change Biology, 21(5), pp.1762-1776.
  40. Schimel D. Forests in the Global Carbon Cycle. In Challenges and Opportunities for the World's Forests in the 21st Century 2014 (pp. 231-239). Springer, Dordrecht.