People & Sponsors


The Climate Data Guide is a community project of the Climate Analysis Section, within the Climate and Global Dynamics Laboratory (CGD) at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). The project was initiated under a competitively selected grant (1048899) from the National Science Foundation (NSF). It continues with support from the NSF through a combination of grants, special awards, and base funding to NCAR.

Principal Investigator

Dr. Clara Deser is the lead principal investigator of the project. She heads the Climate Analysis Section at NCAR, and co-leads a number of community projects in addition to the Climate Data Guide, including the CESM1 and CESM2 Large Ensembles and the Climate Variability Diagnostics Package. An elected member of the National Academy of Sciences, Deser studies global climate variability and climate change in observations and models, with an emphasis on interactions among the atmosphere, ocean, and sea ice.


Ryan Johnson is a software engineer in the Climate and Global Dynamics Laboratory at NCAR and the webmaster for the Climate Data Guide. In conjunction with the web teams at NCAR and UCAR, he makes sure this website is consistent with organizational branding and modern web standards, is highly functional, and runs smoothly.

Adam Phillips is a climate and data scientist in the Climate Analysis Section at NCAR. He develops community resources like the Climate Variability Diagnostics Package. For the Climate Data Guide, he maintains many of the climate indices, including the NAO and North Pacific indices.

Dr. David Schneider is a climate scientist in the Climate Analysis Section at NCAR. In collaboration with the PI, webmaster, and the Board of Advisors, he leads the development, content creation, expert recruitment, editing, and promotion of the Climate Data Guide. Scientifically, Schneider specializes in documenting and interpreting the modern climate evolution of Antarctica, its global connections, its main drivers, and its implications for sea level and climate sensitivity. To develop this understanding, has worked with climate models, as well as all types of observational climate data, including ice core records, atmospheric reanalysis, satellite observations, and in situ weather station records. He has also studied science communication strategies and tools, and puts them into practice through this website, among other outlets.


Founding staff and Co-Principal Investigators

Drs. Aiguo Dai, John Fasullo, James Hurrell, Kevin Trenberth and Mr. Dennis Shea were the original co-principal investigators of the project, along with Dr. Clara Deser.

Mr. Dennis Shea, retired, was an Associate Scientist in the Climate Analysis Section. Dennis developed much of the content for the Climate Data Guide, especially that related to dataset assessment, creation, processing and visualization. In addition to his work on the Climate Data Guide, Dennis was a core contributor to the NCAR Command Language NCL.