Dr. Raymond Pierrehumbert is the Louis Block Professor in Geophysical Sciences at the University of Chicago, having earlier served on the atmospheric science faculties of MIT and Princeton. He is principally interested in the formulation of idealized models which can be brought to bear on fundamental phenomena governing present and past climates of the Earth and other planets. His recent research interests have included water vapor feedback, baroclinic instability, the Neoproterozoic Snowball Earth, the climate of Early Mars, and methane hydrological cycles on Titan. He is director of the Climate Systems Center, a US National Science Foundation Information Technology Research project aimed at bringing modern software design techniques to the problem of climate simulation. He has also collaborated with David Archer on the University of Chicago's global warming curriculum.

He received an A.B. degree in Physics from Harvard, was then a Knox Fellow in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at Cambridge University, and completed his PhD on hydrodynamic stability theory at MIT, in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics. He was a lead author of the IPCC Third Assessment Report, and a co-author of the National Research Council study on abrupt climate change. He is a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union.

Pierrehumbert is currently writing a book on comparative planetary climate, "Climate from First Principles," to be published by Cambridge University Press.