William A. Sprigg, Ph.D.

October 2005



Institute of Atmospheric Physics

Department of Atmospheric Sciences

The University of Arizona

1118 E. 4th St., PO Box 210081

Tucson, AZ 85721-0081

Office/Voice:              520-626-8945

Business Office:         520-621-6834



Background Highlights:

Currently, co-principal investigator for the NASA REASoN Project (2004 - 2009), “Converging NASA Mission Measurements and Products with the Rapid Syndrome Validation Project,” integrating airborne dust concentration into public health decision support systems. Currently, U.S. director of the Sino-U.S. Centers for Soil and Water Conservation and Environmental Protection, co-organizer of the World Laboratory (Malta) international school for dust storm forecasting, and chair of the Climate, Ozone and Greenhouse Effect Permanent Monitoring Panel of the World Federation of Scientists.


Holds academic degrees in atmospheric sciences from Yale University (M.Phil. and Ph.D.), Rutgers (M.S.), and Florida State University (B.S.) and memberships in the American Meteorological Society, American Geophysical Union, World Federation of Scientists, Antarctican Society, and in the scientific society, Sigma Xi.


Architect of the U.S. National Climate Program and a principal architect of the National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center, formed and headed the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Program, headed the U.S. National Climate Program Office, and directed the National Research Council’s Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate.    


Current and Previous Employment:

2003 – present: Research Professor, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, and Department of Soil, Water, and Environmental Sciences, University of Arizona;

2002 – present: Director, Sino-U.S. Centers for Soil and Water Conservation and Environmental Protection, University of Arizona;

1998 – 2003: Deputy Director, Institute for the Study of Planet Earth and Adjunct Research Professor, Department of Atmospheric Sciences and Institute of Atmospheric Physics, University of Arizona;

1990 – 1998: Director, Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council;

1989-1990: Director, National Climate Program Office, NOAA;

1987-1989: Director, NOAA Climate Office, and Deputy Director, Office of Global Programs, NOAA;

1983-1987: Deputy Director, National Climate Program Office, NOAA;

1979-1987: Program Manager, National Experimental Climate Forecast Program;

1978-1983: Assistant Director for Research, National Climate Program Office, NOAA;

1976-1978: Climate Diagnostics Project Manager, NOAA;

1972-1976: Physical Scientist, NOAA;

1961-1963: Instructor, U.S. Army Signal School.


Selected Professional Activities:

Member, NRC Organizing Committee for the US National Committee for CODATA, Senegal River Basin Case Study, “Scientific Data for Decision Making Toward Sustainable Development,” 2002;

Member, Editorial Board, AGU Monograph, Solar Variability and its Effects on Climate,2001-2002;

Member, Editorial Board, Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1999-2001;

Member, Board of Directors, Voice of America-Cinetel Infectious Disease Media Project, 1997-1999;

Consultant, Remotely Piloted Vehicles Committee, NRC, 1994-1995;

Member, U.S. Global Change Interagency Working Group on Mitigation and Response Strategies, 1990-1992;

Member and Head of Delegation, Working Group II, Impact Assessment, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, The United Nations, 1990;

Head, International Technical Review Panel, the first IPCC report, 1990;

Administrator, Working Group VIII, US/USSR Bilateral Agreement on the Environment, 1989-1990;

Member, Committee on Climate Variability, AMS, 1986-89;

Special Consultant to the President and the President’s Interagency Drought Policy Committee, 1988;

Consultant, U.S. Congress Office of Technology Assessment, “Continuing the Commitment: The

Sahel Development Program,” 1986;

Member and Head of Delegation, Delegation of Experts to the People’s Republic of China, 1982;

Consultant, U.S. National Science Foundation, 1982-84;

Consultant, NOAA Geophysical Monitoring for Climate Change Program (Antarctic Operations), 1981;

Co-chair, Navy/NOAA Steering Committee on Ocean Climate Monitoring, 1980-1984;

Member, Subcommittee on Biological and Climatic Effects Research, The President’s Council on Environmental Quality, 1975-1979;

Chair, Climate Diagnostics Research Team, NOAA, 1976-1978;

Member, WMO/UNEP Panel on Climate Monitoring, 1974-1979;

Member, NASA Earth Radiation Budget Steering Committee, 1977-1978;

Member, NASA/NOAA Earth Radiation Budget Satellite System Working Group, 1977-1978;

Member, U.S. National Climate Change Program Task Group, U.S. Domestic Council, 1974;

Member, Interagency Group on International Aviation, DOT, 1973-1979;

Head, National Climate Program Planning Task Group, Interdepartmental Committee for Atmospheric Sciences, 1973-1974;


Held office and chaired many conferences in professional organizations, drafted components of international agreements and formal treaties, and framed numerous federal interagency agreements, for example: establishing a weather station in the Republic of Kiribati; establishing a NASA Experimental Climate Forecast Center (1983); Co-chairing the Organizing Committee establishing the Sino-U.S. Centers for Soil and Water Conservation and Environmental Protection, 2001-2002; Co-chairing the International Workshop, “Planning for Climate Change Through Coastal Zone Management,” Taipei, 1997; and Chairing the Technical Program Committee for the Third USA/CIS Joint Conference on Environmental Hydrology and Hydrogeology—Water: Sustaining a Critical Resource, Tashkent, 1996.


Publications (1995- present):

  1. Yin, D., S. Nickovic, B. Barbaris, B. Chandy, W. A. Sprigg; 2005; Modelling wind-blown desert dust in the southwestern United States for public health warning: a case study; Atmospheric Environment, 39, 6243-6254
  2. Pap, J., Fox, P., Frohlich, C., Hudson, H.S., Kuhn, J., McCormack, J., North, G., Sprigg, W., and S.T. Wu (eds); (2004); Solar Variability and its Effects on Climate; AGU Monograph Series, AGU, Washington, D.C.
  3. Sprigg, W.A. and J. Pap; (2004); Science Requirements and Required Future Measurements; In: Solar Variability and its Effects on Climate; AGU Monograph Series, AGU, Washington, D.C; 141:357-366.
  4. Sprigg, W.A.; (2004); Implications of Climate Variability and Change; In: Briefings for the President of Italy; World Federation of Scientists; Geneva., 10 pp.
  5. Gray, J.R., Osterkamp, W., Sprigg, W.A., and S.A. Christianson; 2003; Formation of the Sino-US Centers for Soil and Water Conservation and Environmental Protection; International Journal of Sediment Research, Special Issue on Sediment Transport and Environmental Studies, Vol. 18, No. 2, pp. 248-252
  6. Sprigg, W.A.; 2003; Weather and Climate Data, Analyses, and Applications; In: Scientific Data for Decision Making Toward Sustainable Development: Senegal River Basin Case Study; NRC; National Academy Press; p. 17-18.
  7. Sprigg, W.A.; 2002; Sun-Climate Connections, In: McGraw-Hill 2002 Yearbook of Science & Technology, McGraw-Hill, New York.
  8. Sprigg, W.A., Christiansen, S.C., Gray, J.R., and S.S. Fan; 2001; Terms of Reference for a Sino-US Centers for Soil and Water Conservation and Environmental Protection; USDA/ARS Deputy Secretary Report, USDA, Washington, D.C.
  9. Sprigg, W.A. and J. D. All; (2001); Climate Variability and Human Health, In: Proceedings of the Biennial Environment and Health Symposium, Ministry of Health/ Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Brazil.
  10. Sprigg, W.A. and T. Hinkley; 2000; (eds) Southwest Regional Assessment Group; Preparing for a Changing Climate: The Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change. Institute for the Study of Planet Earth, University of Arizona; 60 pp.
  11. Sprigg, W.A. and T. Hinkley; 2000; Overcoming Barriers in the Use of Climate Information; In: Climate Change Communication; The University of Waterloo Press; ISBN 0-662-29159-X.
  12. Sprigg, W.A., P.F. Uhlir, and G.E. Tallia; 1999; Data Access in the Face of Global Protectionism; In: The Science and Culture Series; World Scientific Publishing; London.
  13. Clark, R. and W. A. Sprigg; 1999; A Proposal for Improved Monitoring and Prediction of Dust and Sand Storms in the Arab Countries; World Laboratory Press; Lausanne.
  14. Bosart, L. and W. A. Sprigg; 1998. The Meteorological Buoy and CMAN Network for the United States; National Research Council, Washington, D.C., 97 pp.
  15. Colwell, R., P. Epstein, D. Gubler, M. Hall, P. Reiter, J. Shukla, W. Sprigg, E. Takafuji, and J. Trtanj; 1998; Global Climate Change and Infectious Diseases; In: Emerging Infectious Diseases; 4:451-452.
  16. Sprigg, W.A.; 1997; Stratospheric Ozone and Climate Change; World Laboratory Press; Lausanne
  17. Sprigg, W.A.; 1996; Doctors Watch the Forecasts.  Nature; 379; 582-583.
  18. Sprigg, W.A.; 1996; Climate, a Factor in Infectious Diseases and Health; In: Proceedings from the International Seminars on Planetary Emergencies, 21st Session, Erice; 7 pp.
  19. Sprigg, W.A.; 1996.  Near-Term Evolution of Earth’s Climate; In: Astrobiology Workshop Report: Leadership in Astrobiology; NASA; Washington, D.C.
  20. Unninayar, S.S. and W. Sprigg; 1995. Climate and the Emergence and Spread of Infectious Diseases. EOS, AGU, 76:47.


As Director of the Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, National Research Council, oversaw and contributed to more than 27 studies and publications by the National Academy of Sciences covering air chemistry, solar impacts on the atmosphere, climate variability and change, weather forecasting, observation techniques and technology, and science policy. Most of these are climate-relevant, including:


  1. NRC, 1999. Global Environmental Change: Research Pathways for the Next Decade, National Academy Press, 595 pp.
  2. NRC, 1998.  A Scientific Strategy for U.S. Participation in the GOALS (Global Ocean-Atmosphere-Land System) Component of the CLIVAR (Climate Variability and Predictability) Programme, National Academy Press, 69 pp.
  3. NRC, 1998. GEWEX–CLIVAR: Coordination of U.S. Activities, National Academy Press, 22 pp.
  4. NRC, 1998. GCIP: A Review of Progress and Opportunities, National Academy Press, 93 pp.
  5. NRC, 1998. The Atmospheric Sciences Entering the Twenty-First Century, National Academy Press 364 pp.
  6. NRC, 1998. Decade-to-Century-Scale Climate Variability and Change: A Science Strategy, National Academy Press, 142 pp.
  7. NRC, 1998. Capacity of U.S. Climate Modeling to Support Climate Change Assessment Activities, National Academy Press, 65 pp.
  8. NRC, 1998. The Meteorological Buoy and Coastal Marine Automated Network for the United States, National Academy Press, 97 pp.
  9. NRC, 1997. The Global Ocean Observing System: Users, Benefits, and Priorities. National Academy Press, 92 pp.
  10. NRC, 1997. “Recommendations for U.S. Policy Concerning Observations Supporting the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change,” (letter report) Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, National Research Council, 3 pp. 
  11. NRC, 1996. Learning to Predict the Climate Variations Associated with El Niño and the Southern Oscillation: Accomplishments and Legacies of the TOGA Program, National Academy Press, 171 pp.
  12. NRC, 1995. Natural Climate Variability on Decade-to-Century Time Scales, National Academy Press, 630 pp.
  13. NRC, 1995. Organizing U.S. Participation in GOALS, National Academy Press, 8 pp.
  14. NRC, 1994. Estimating Bounds on Extreme Precipitation Events: A Brief Assessment, National Academy Press
  15. NRC, 1994. GEWEX and GCIP: Initial Review of Concepts and Objectives (Letter Report), National Academy Press
  16. NRC, 1994. GOALS (Global Ocean-Atmosphere-Land System) for Predicting Seasonal-to-Interannual Climate – A Program of Observation, Modeling, and Analysis, National Academy Press, 103 pp.
  17. NRC, 1994. Ocean-Atmosphere Observations Supporting Short-term Climate Predictions, National Academy Press, 51 pp.
  18. NRC, 1992. .A Decade of International Climate Research: The First Ten Years of the World Climate Research Program, National Academy Press, 59 pp.
  19. NRC, 1992. Climatological Considerations of the National Weather Service Modernization Program. In Toward A New National Weather Service, Second Report of the NRC National Weather Service Modernization Committee, National Academy Press
  20. NRC, 1992. Coastal Meteorology: A Review of the State of the Science, National Academy Press, 99 pp.
  21. NRC, 1991. Four-Dimensional Model Assimilation of Data: A Strategy for the Earth System Sciences, National Academy Press
  22. NRC, 1991. Prospects for Extending the Range of Prediction of the Global Atmosphere, National Academy Press, 33 pp.
  23. NRC, 1990. TOGA: A Review of Progress and Future Opportunities. Advisory Panel for the Tropical Ocean and Global Atmosphere (TOGA) Program, National Academy Press, 66 pp.
  24. NRC, 1990. Advancing the Understanding and Forecasting of Mesoscale Weather in the United States. Committee on Meteorological Analysis, Prediction, and Research, National Academy Press.