Group Leader and Professor of Quantitative Earth Observation

Email paul.palmer(at)ed(dot)ac(dot)uk

Skype/Google+ paulipalmer



B.Sc., (Physics), University of Bristol, 1995
D.Phil., (Physics), University of Oxford, 1998

Academic Career
Professor (full and tenured), University of Edinburgh, 2009-
University Lecturer, University of Edinburgh, 2006-2009
University Research Fellow, University of Leeds, 2005-2006
Postdoc/Research Associate, Harvard University, 1999-2005

Awards and Prizes
Royal Society-Wolfson Research Merit Award holder (2013-2018).
Zeldovich Medal, COSPAR and the Russian Academy of Sciences, 2010.
Philip Leverhulme Prize recipient, 2008.

Honorary Visiting Positions
Distinguished Visiting Scientist, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, USA, 2019-2021 
Visiting Scientist, Laboratoire des sciences du climat et de l'environnement, Paris, 2018-
Visiting Scholar, University of Washington in Seattle, Summer 2014.

Visiting Researcher, Microsoft Research (2011-2012).
Visiting Research Scientist, NCAR, USA, (2006-2009).  

Honorary Fellow, School of GeoSciences, University of Edinburgh, (2005-2006).  

Current Professional Activities
Principal Investigator and Centre Science DirectorNERC NCEO
Science teamJapanese GOSAT, NASA ACOS, NASA OCO-2, OCO-2, CNES, MicroCarb
Committee membership: EU Task Force on Monitoring anthropogenic CO2 (11/16-present); Royal Society Newton Advanced Fellows Panel (1/19-).
Editorial Advisory BoardAtmospheric EnvironmentElementa, Environmental Research Communications


The Atmosphere: A Very Short Introduction,

Oxford University Press, March 2017, ISBN 9780198722038



Essential Maths for Geoscientists,

Wiley, May 2014, ISBN 9780470971949





University of Edinburgh

  • Earth's Atmospheric Composition (2014-- ). 
  • Earth Modelling and Prediction (2008--2014). Lectures now written as a book (Amazon, Wiley from May 2014).
  • Atmospheric radiative transfer, M.Sc. in Remote Sensing and Image Processing (2007-2008).
  • Contemporary issues in Earth Observation (guest lecture, 2008 and 2009).

Harvard University

  • Temporary/guest lecturer, Atmospheric Chemistry EPS 133 (2003, 2004).

University of Oxford

  • Graduate tutor, General Physics for Earth Sciences (1995-1996).


  • Tutor (regular), Mathematics and Physics, Greene's Tutorial College, Oxford (1996-1999).
  • Tutor (regular and Easter crammer),  Mathematics and Physics, Cherwell Tutorial College, Oxford (1996-1999).

PhD comics
Science Friday

Summary of my home life