Dr Paul Young

Senior Lecturer

Profile

I am an atmospheric and climate scientist, using environmental data science to conduct transdisciplinary research on global change. I collaborate with stakeholders in business, policy and civil society, and disciplines from environmental science, data science, management, social science, arts and humanities. I work mainly in UK, European and Global South (Africa and South America) contexts. I am the Air theme lead for the Lancaster-UKCEH Centre of Excellence for Environmental Data Science (CEEDS), an Associate Director of The Pentland Centre, and an affiliate of Lancaster's Data Science Institute. You can follow me on twitter or send an email.

Research and engagement

My research interests include uncertainty quantification and process model evaluation, climate change and business, community-engagement, and frameworks for decision making. My expertise and experience cover Earth system science, air quality and the ozone layer; climate models; visualisation and open science tools; and work at the interface with critical social science. I currently supervise 10 PhD students, working in areas from air quality, climate change, data science methods, climate-economy impacts, Amazon change and its carbon cycle, post-normal science, and the interface of design, architecture and the environment.

Current and recent projects include DSNE (2018-2023; Data Science for the Natural Environment), which aims to bring state of the art data science and statistical science techniques to bear on important environmental problems, and where I lead the air quality environmental challenge; Models in the Cloud (2016-2020), which leveraged computer science expertise to make running environmental models more straightforward, with an environmental focus on urban heat islands; a project to investigate the impact of short-lived halogens on the ozone layer (2019-2020; ISHOC); and a project to understand and better quantify uncertainty in global atmospheric chemistry models. You can find information about my published research on my google scholar page.

I have worked with the World Business Council on Sustainable Development (WBCSD) to investigate approaches for companies to respond to the requirements of the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) (how will different climate change scenarios impact them?), as well as working on the same issue with Nestlé in more detail. I provided a climate science briefing to Lancaster's People’s Climate Jury, oral evidence to Lancaster City Council's Climate Emergency Declaration, and advice and consultation with Dee McLean (artist and illustrator) for series of books and exhibitions on local and global change.

I was a coordinating lead author on the IGAC Tropospheric Ozone Assessment Report; an author on the 2018 and 2019 (update) reports of the UNEP/WMO Environmental Effects Assessment Panel, and an author on the 2018 and 2014 reports of the WMO/UNEP Scientific Assessment Panel, both related to stratospheric ozone depletion; and a contributing author to two chapters of the IPCC 5th Assessment Report. I am a member of the Reactive Gases Science Advisory Group of the WMO Global Atmospheric Watch (GAW), and was a member of the Scientific Steering Committee for the IGAC/SPARC Chemistry-Climate Model Initiative (CCMI).

Teaching

I teach a 3rd year/Masters-level course on Global Change and the Earth System (LEC378 and LEC477), covering climate change, ozone depletion and air pollution: how they couple and feedback across the Earth system, and how we use measurements and models to understand it all. I also teach maths to first years in need of a refresher.

Until 2017, I was the LEC Careers and Alumni tutor, acting as a bridge between our students and the careers advice provided centrally, and seeking to engage our alumni in our current activities. Past and current students can stay up to date with careers and employability information by liking the BeyondLEC Facebook page.

  • Atmosphere, Climate and Pollution
  • Centre of Excellence in Environmental Data Science
  • DSI - Environment
  • Improving global stewardship
  • Understanding a changing planet