Christopher J. Poulsen

Christopher J. Poulsen

Affiliated Professor


Climate & Space Research Building 2455 Hayward Street Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2143

Primary Website


  • Ph.D., Geosciences, Pennsylvania State University
  • B.A., Geology, Carleton College

Research Interests

Climate change; climate modeling; paleoclimate and paleoceanography; paleoaltimetry; surface-atmosphere interactions; water stable isotopes.

Google Scholar Profile: click here.

ORCID: 0000-0001-5104-4271


Professor Poulsen is both a Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Chair, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts and Professor of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences, College of Engineering. You can view his other department web page at


  • John Dewey Teaching Award, University of Michigan (2013)
  • Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellowship, Germany (2009)
  • Fellow of the Geological Society of America (2007)
  • Innovative Teaching Award, University of Southern California (2001)
  • International Paleoceanography Conference VI, Student Poster Award (1998)
  • Muan Fellowship, Pennsylvania State University (1998)
  • Shell Doctoral Fellowship, Pennsylvania State University (1997)
  • NASA Space Grant Fellowship, Pennsylvania State University (1996)
  • U.S.G.S., N.A.G.T.-U.S.G.S. Internship (1994)
  • Keck Fellowship, Carleton College (1993)


Selected recent publications (full list can be found here).

  • Skinner, C.B., Poulsen, C.J., Chadwick, R., Diffenbaugh, N.S., and Fiorella, R.P. (2016) The role of plant CO2 physiological forcing in shaping future daily-scale precipitation, Journal of Climate. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0603.1.
  • Tabor, C.R., Poulsen, C.J., Lunt, D.J., Rosenbloom, N.A., Otto-Bliesner, B.L., Markwick, P.J., Brady, E.C., and Farnsworth, A., (2016) The cause of Late Cretaceous cooling: A multi-model/proxy comparison, Geology, doi:10.1130/G38363.1.
  • Fiorella, R.P., Poulsen, C.J., Pillco Zola, R.S., Barnes, J., Tabor, C., and Ehlers, T.A. (2015). Spatiotemporal variability of modern precipitation d18O in the Central Andes and implications for paleoclimate and paloaltimetry estimates, Journal of Geophysical Research Atmospheres, 120(10), 4630-4656, doi: 10.1002/2014JD022893.
  • Poulsen, C.J., Tabor, C.R., and White, J.D. (2015). Long-term climate forcing by atmospheric oxygen concentrations, Science, 348 (6240), 1238-1241, doi:10.1126/science.1260670.
  • Feng, R., Poulsen, C.J., Werner, M., Chamberlain, C.P., Mix, H.T., and Mulch, A. (2013). Evolution of Early Cenozoic topography, climate, and stable isotopes in precipitation in the North American Cordillera, American Journal of Science, 313, 613-648, doi:10.2475/07.2013.01.
  • Insel, N., Poulsen, C.J., and Ehlers, T.A., (2010). Influence of the Andes Mountains on South American moisture transport, convection, and precipitation, Climate Dynamics, v. 35, 1477-1492, doi:10.1007/s00382-009-0637-1.
  • Poulsen, C.J., Ehlers, T.A., and Insel, N., (2010). Onset of convective rainfall during gradual Late Miocene rise of the Central Andes, Science, 328, 490-493, doi:10.1126/science.1185078.