2010 Physical Sciences Review » Biographies » Kristen Averyt

Kristen Averyt

Kristen Averyt

Kristen Averyt

Deputy Director, Western Water Assessment (RISA)

Physical Sciences Division


Currently, I am the Deputy Director of the Western Water Assessment, one of the NOAA-sponsored Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessment (RISA) Programs located across the US. Our research team focuses on developing climate science relevant to decision makers throughout the Western US.


  • PhD Geological & Environmental Sciences, Stanford University, 2004
  • MSc Chemistry, University of Otago (New Zealand), Fulbright Fellow, 1999
  • BSc Chemistry, Marine Science, University of Miami, 1998

Research Interests

My current research portfolio encompasses a broad suite of climate issues relevant to decision making. My major projects include assessing the intersection of renewable energy technologies, water availability, and climate change in the West; evaluating decision-making in the context of climate adaptation; and defining processes for engaging users in the development of climate services. I am also still involved in paleoclimate research related to my dissertation work.


Kristen has received several awards and honors, including a Fulbright Fellowship to New Zealand in 1998. After graduate school she was awarded a NOAA Knauss Congressional Fellowship (2005), during which she worked in the US Senate. As the staff scientist for Working Group I of the IPCC, she was one of the many scientists who received the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize.

Recent Publications

  • K. Averyt (Accepted) Are we successfully adapting climate science to climate change?, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society.
  • Leary, N., K. Averyt, B. Hewitson and J. Marengo (2009). "Crossroads for Regional Climate Change Research: Synthesis of the IPCC Expert Meeting on Regional Impacts, Adaptation, Vulnerability, and Mitigation." Climate Research 40:121-131, doi: 10.3354/cr00832.
  • Udall, B. and K. Averyt (2009) A Critical Need: A National Interagency Water Plan, Southwest Hydrology, 8(1), 18-19.
  • Ray, A.J., J.J. Barsugli and K.B. Averyt (2008) Climate Change in Colorado: A Synthesis to Support Water Resources Management and Adaptation. University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado.
  • Paytan, A, K.B. Averyt, K. Faul, E. Gray and E. Thomas (2007) Barite accumulation, gas hydrates and the carbon cycle: a view from the Paleocene/Eocene thermal maximum, Geology, 35(12), 10.1130/G24162A.1.
  • IPCC (2007) Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Solomon, S., D. Qin, M. Manning, M.C. Marquis, Z. Chen, K.B. Averyt, M. Tignor and H.L. Miller (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA.