Contact Details

Future Earth

Bio, Publications

I am the director of the Future Earth Global Hub in Paris. Apart from general oversight, main responsibilities are to co-manage activities on Synthesis & Foresight and on early-career aspects of Capacity Building in Future Earth, also to cultivate the link and collaboration with the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP), the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Among the Knowledge-Action Networks in Future Earth, I am co-coordinating the one on sustainable oceans. In addition, I serve as the connector of Future Earth's Regional Centre for Middle East and North Africa (MENA) with the global operation of Future Earth.
I joined Future Earth after a decade as Executive Director of Past Global Changes (PAGES), which is now a core project under the umbrella of Future Earth. My research background is in ocean sciences. I earned my PhD in the field of paleoceanography in 1997 from the University of Kiel, Germany. I then continued studying past oceanographic and climatic changes from deep-sea sediments as a researcher in Kiel and at the University of Cambridge, UK. With the move to the PAGES International Project Office in Switzerland in 2005 my professional scope expanded widely across the fields of climatic and environmental change and towards international science management. The move to Future Earth in 2015 further broadened my scope to managing sustainability research across all scientific disciplines at the interface to societal partners. Until 2017 I also served the open-access journal Climate of the Past as an editor, from 2008-2017 as co-chief editor.


Wang, P.X., Wang, B., Cheng, H., Fasullo, J., Guo, Z., Kiefer, T., Liu, Z., 2017. The global monsoon across time scales: Mechanisms and outstanding issues. Earth-Science Reviews 174, 84-121.

Seitzinger, S.P., Gaffney, O., Brasseur, G., Broadgate, W., Ciais, P., Claussen, M., Erisman, J.W., Kiefer, T., Lancelot, C., Monks, P.S., Smyth, K., Syvitski, J., Uematsu, M., 2015. International Geosphere–Biosphere Programme and Earth system science: Three decades of co-evolution. Anthropocene 12, 3-16.

Wang, P.X., Wang, B., Cheng, H., Fasullo, J., Guo, Z.T., Kiefer, T., Liu, Z.Y. (2014). The global monsoon across timescales: coherent variability of regional monsoons. Climate of the Past 10, 2007-2052.

Waelbroeck, C., Kiefer, T., Dokken, T., Chen, M.-T., Spero, H.J., Jung, S., Weinelt, M., Kucera, M., Paul, A., MARGO Project Members (2014). Constraints on surface seawater oxygen isotope change between the Last Glacial Maximum and the Late Holocene. Quat. Sci. Rev. 105, 102-111.

Seddon, A.W.R., Mackay, A.W., et al. (2014). Looking forward through the past: identification of 50 priority research questions in palaeoecology. Journal of Ecology 102, 256-267.

Johnstone, H.J.H., Kiefer, T., Elderfield, H., Schulz, M. (2014). Calcite saturation, foraminiferal test mass, and Mg/Ca-based temperatures dissolution corrected using XDX—A 150 ka record from the western Indian Ocean,Geochem. Geophys. Geosyst., 15, 781–797.

Galbraith, E.D., Kienast, M. and The NICOPP working group members (2013). The acceleration of oceanic denitrification during deglacial warming. Nature Geoscience, doi:10.1038/ngeo183.

PAGES 2k Consortium (2013). Continental-scale temperature variability during the last two millennia. Nature Geoscience 6, 339-346.

Robinson, R.S., Kienast, M., Luiza Albuquerque, A., Altabet, M., Contreras, S., De Pol Holz, R., Dubois, N., Francois, R., Galbraith, E., Hsu, T.-C., Ivanochko, T., Jaccard, S., Kao, S.-J., Kiefer, T., Kienast, S., Lehmann, M., Martinez, P., McCarthy, M., Möbius, J., Pedersen, T., Quan, T.M., Ryabenko, E., Schmittner, A., Schneider, R., Schneider-Mor, A., Shigemitsu, M., Sinclair, D., Somes, C., Studer, A., Thunell, R., Yang, J.-Y. (2012). A review of nitrogen isotopic alteration in marine sediments. Paleoceanography 27, PA4203.

Wang, B., Wang, P., Kiefer, T., 2012. Global Monsoon. Climate Dynamics 39.

Luterbacher, J. et al. (2012). A review of 2000 years of paleoclimatic evidence in the Mediterranean, In: Lionello, P. (Ed.), The Climate of the Mediterranean region: From the Past to the Future. Elsevier, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, pp. 87-185.

Kiefer, T. (2010) When Still Waters Ran Deep. Science 329, 290-291.

Newman, L., Kiefer, T., Otto-Bliesner, B., & Wanner, H. (2010) The science and strategy of the Past Global Changes (PAGES) project. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 2, 193–201.

Jones, P.D. et al., 2009. High-resolution paleoclimatology of the last millennium: a review of current status and future prospects, The Holocene 19, 3-49.

Witton, L. and Kiefer, T. (2009) New Strategic Plan and Data Portal for Past Global Change Science. Eos Transactions 90, 426–427.

Tzedakis, P.C., Raynaud, D., McManus, J.F., Berger, A., Brovkin, V., and Kiefer, T. (2009). Interglacial diversity. Nature Geoscience, 2, 751–755.

MARGO Project Members. (2009). Constraints on the magnitude and patterns of ocean cooling at the Last Glacial Maximum. Nature Geoscience 2, 127-132.

Gebhardt, H., M. Sarnthein, P.M. Grootes, T. Kiefer, H. Kühn, F. Schmieder, and U. Rohl (2008), Paleonutrient and productivity records from the subarctic North Pacific for Pleistocene glacial terminations I to V, Paleoceanography 23, PA4212.

Galbraith, E.D., M. Kienast, S.L. Jaccard, T.F. Pedersen, B.G. Brunelle, D.M. Sigman, and T. Kiefer (2008), Consistent relationship between global climate and surface nitrate utilization in the western subarctic Pacific throughout the last 500 ka, Paleoceanography, 23, PA2212.

Ziveri, P., Young, J., Fabry, V., Bijma, J., Turk, D., Kiefer, T., Eisenhauer, T., 2008. Understanding Marine Biotic Responses to Fossil Fuel Emissions. Eos, Transactions, American Geophysical Union 89, 127.

Ziveri, P., Fabry, V., Bijma, J., Turk, D., Young, J., Schmidt, D., Brownlee, C., Erez, J., Kiefer, T., Turley, C., Eisenhauer, A., 2007. Atmospheric CO2, ocean acidification, and ecological changes in planktonic calcifying organisms. The Eggs 22, 28-32.

Kiefer, T. and C. Kull, Climates of Past Interglacials - a PAGES Perspective. In: Sirocko, F., Claussen, M., Litt, T., Sanchez Goñi, M.F., (Eds.), The Climate of Past Interglacials, Elsevier Science Ltd, Developments in Quaternary Science 7, xi-xiii, 2007.

Kiefer,T., I. N. McCave, and H. Elderfield, Antarctic control on tropical Indian Ocean sea surface temperature and hydrography, Geophys. Res. Lett., 33, L24612, 2006.

Mann, M. E., K. R. Briffa, P.D. Jones, T. Kiefer, C. Kull, and H. Wanner, Past Millennia Climate Variability. Eos, Transactions, American Geophysical Union 87 (47), 527, 2006.

Kiefer, T., Late Pleistocene Paleoceanographic Records of the North Pacific Ocean. in Elias, S.A., (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Quaternary Science, Elsevier, 1802-1815, 2006.

Elderfield, H., J. Yu, P. Anand, T. Kiefer, and B. Nyland, Calibrations for benthic foraminiferal Mg/Ca palaeothermometry and the carbonate ion hypothesis. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 250, 633-649, 2006. DOI 10.1016/j.epsl.2006.07.041

Sarnthein, M., T. Kiefer, P.M. Grootes, H. Elderfield, and H. Erlenkeuser, Warmings in the far northwestern Pacific promoted pre-Clovis immigration to America during Heinrich event 1, Geology, 34 (3), 141–144, 2006.

Kiefer, T. and M. Kienast, Patterns of deglacial warming in the Pacific Ocean: a review with emphasis on the time interval of Heinrich Event 1, Quaternary Science Reviews, 24, 1063-1081, 2005.

McCave, I.N., T. Kiefer, D.J.R. Thornalley, and H. Elderfield, Deep flow in the Madagascar-Mascarene Basin over the last 150,000 years, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London A , 363, 81-99, 2005.

Kucera, M., M. Weinelt, T. Kiefer, U. Pflaumann, A. Hayes, M. Weinelt, Min-Te Chen, Alan C. Mix, Timothy T. Barrows, Elsa Cortijo, Josette Duprat, Steve Juggins, Claire Waelbroeck, Reconstruction of sea-surface temperatures from assemblages of planktonic foraminifera: Multi-technique approach based on geographically constrained calibration datasets and its application to glacial Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, Quaternary Science Reviews, 24, 951-998, 2005.

Waelbroeck, C., S. Mulitza, H. Spero, T. Dokken, T. Kiefer, and E. Cortijo, A global compilation of Late Holocene planktonic foraminiferal d18O: relationship between surface water temperature and d18O, Quaternary Science Reviews, 24, 853-868, 2005.

Barker, S., T. Kiefer, and H. Elderfield, Temporal changes in North Atlantic circulation constrained by planktonic foraminiferal shell weights, Paleoceanography, 19, PA3008, 2004.

Sarnthein, M., H. Gebhardt, T. Kiefer, M. Kucera, M. Cook, and H. Erlenkeuser, Mid Holocene origin of the sea surface salinity low in the subarctic North Pacific, Quaternary Science Reviews , 23, 2089-2099, 2004.

Pflaumann, U., M. Sarnthein, M. Chapman, L. d'Abreu, B. Funnell, M. Huels, T. Kiefer, M. Maslin, H. Schulz, J. Swallow, S. van Kreveld, M. Vautravers, E. Vogelsang, and M. Weinelt, Glacial North Atlantic: Sea-surface conditions reconstructed by GLAMAP 2000, Paleoceanography, 18, 1065, 2003.

Weinelt, M., A. Rosell-Melé, U. Pflaumann, M. Sarnthein, and T. Kiefer, The role of productivity in the Northeast Atlantic on abrupt climate change over the last 80,000 years, Zeitschrift der Deutschen Geologischen Gesellschaft, 154, 47-66, 2003.

Kiefer T., S. Lorenz, M. Schulz, G. Lohmann, M. Sarnthein and H. Elderfield, Response of precipitation over Greenland and the adjacent ocean to North-Pacific warm spells during the last glacial period: Implications for Dansgaard-Oeschger cycles, Terra Nova 14, 295-300, 2002.

Kiefer T., M. Sarnthein, H. Erlenkeuser, P. Grootes and A. Roberts, North Pacific response to millennial-scale changes in ocean circulation over the last 65 ky, Paleoceanography 16, 179-189, 2001.

Sarnthein, M., K. Stattegger, D. Dreger, H. Erlenkeuser, P.M. Grootes, B. Haupt, S. Jung, T. Kiefer, W. Kuhnt, U. Pflaumann, C. Schäfer-Neth, M. Schulz, D. Seidov, J. Simstich, S. van Kreveld-Alfane, E. Vogelsang, A. Voelker and M. Weinelt, Fundamental modes and abrupt changes in North Atlantic circulation and climate over the last 60 ky - Numerical modelling and reconstruction, in: The northern North Atlantic: a changing environment, Schäfer et al. (Eds), Springer, 2001.


G. Chen, A.-L. Daniau, M. E. de Porras, A. Elmore, K. Mills, R. Saraswat, S. Phipps, A. Reyes, and T. Kiefer (Eds.). The Past: A Compass for Future Earth - PAGES Young Scientists Meeting 2013, Climate of the Past, Vol. 10, 2014.

Wang, B., Wang, P., Kiefer, T. (Eds.) Special Issue: Global Monsoon, Climate Dynamics, Vol. 39(5), 2012

M. H. Masiokas, D. Christie, M. Grosjean, A. Rivera, R. Villalba, and T. Kiefer (Eds). Climate variations in South America over the last 2000 years, Climate of the Past, Vol. 8, 2012.

T. Kiefer, B. L. Otto-Bliesner, C. Whitlock, and E. Wolff (Eds). Retrospective views on our planet's future – PAGES Open Science Meeting 2009, Climate of the Past, Vol. 6/7, 2011.

C. Cleroux, S. Phipps, S. Rupper, B. Williams, T. Kiefer (Eds). Proceedings of the PAGES 1st YSM: Retrospective views on our planet's future. IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, Vol. 9, 2010.

R. Villalba, M. Grosjean and T. Kiefer (Eds). Long-term multi-proxy climate reconstructions and dynamics in South America (LOTRED-SA): State of the art and perspectives. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 281(3-4), 175-376, 2009.

J. Brigham-Grette, T. Kiefer, P. Wang, and H. Wanner (Eds). Paleoclimate, environmental sustainability and our future, Climate of the Past, 2/3, 2007.