Andrew Dessler’s latest research focuses on climate change, water vapor, and clouds. His work has been critical in climate change both in informing the scientific community and introducing students to this important field. In addition to teaching, he contributes the public discussion on climate change by writing numerous opinion pieces and blogs, interviewing in the mainstream media and testifying before US select committees.
He is a professor in the Department of Atmospheric Sciences and the Earl F. Cook Professor of Geosciences at Texas A&M. He received his PhD in chemistry from Harvard University in 1994. He did postdoctoral work at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (1994-6) and then spent nine years on the research faculty of the University of Maryland (1996-2005).
Dessler spent 2000 as a Senior Policy Analyst in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, where he collaborated with Ted Parson. While there, he became aware of a profound lack of understanding among policymakers and the general public about how science works and how to interpret the conflicting claims one often hears in policy debates. Based on that experience, he wrote a book, The Science and Politics of Global Climate Change: A Guide to the Debate, that uses examples from the climate change arena to explain how science is used and misused in the policy arena.
Dessler's academic publications include one other book: The Chemistry and Physics of Stratospheric Ozone (2000). He has also published extensively in the scientific literature on stratospheric ozone depletion and the physics of climate.