Andrew Dowdy

Senior Research Scientist

Current work and responsibilities

Andrew's research is focused on extreme weather phenomena and the physical processes influencing their risk of occurrence. He investigates wildfires, thunderstorms, tropical cyclones and Australian east coast lows, as well as associated severe conditions (lightning, hail, pyroconvection, extreme precipitation, wind and ocean waves). This includes temporal scales from short-term weather conditions up to long-term seasonal and climate scales, based on observations as well as modelling.

This focus on extreme events builds on a number of research projects he has led in recent years, including for the Australian Climate Change Science Program (ACCSP), Pacific Climate Change Science Program (PCCSP) and Bushfire CRC, as well as leading the East Coast regional assessment of the CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology climate projections project: Climate Change in Australia

He is currently the Lead Chief Investigator managing the Extreme Weather Projections research project of the National Environmental Science Programme (NESP), with research team members from CSIRO, BoM, Uni. Melbourne, UNSW, Uni. Queensland and Federation Uni., to help build preparedness and resilience in relation to extreme weather events. He also leads research projects in the BNHCRC on seasonal prediction of fire danger and in the Electricity Sector Climate Information (ESCI) project.

Career background

Education:
  • 1993: AMusA (Piano Performance), University of Adelaide.
  • 1996: BSc (Double major: Theoretical Physics and Experimental Physics), University of Adelaide.
  • 1998: BSc Hons (1st Class), Dept of Physics, University of Adelaide.
  • 2005: PhD, University of Adelaide, in collaboration with Australian Antarctic Division and Leibniz-Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Germany.
Professional Positions
  • 1998-2001: Tutor/demonstrator, University of Adelaide, Adelaide.
  • 2001-2003: Lidar physicist, Australian Antarctic Division, Hobart and Davis Station.
  • 2005-2006: Postdoctoral research scientist, University of Adelaide, Adelaide.
  • 2006: Science communicator, Questacon, Canberra.
  • 2006-2007: Policy officer, Australian Greenhouse Office, Canberra.
  • 2007-present: Senior research scientist, Bureau of Meteorology, Melbourne.

Selected Publications

  • Dowdy, Ye, Pepler, Thatcher, Osbrough, Evans, Di Virgilio & McCarthy, 2019: Future changes in extreme weather and pyroconvection risk factors for Australian wildfires. Scientific Reports, 9, doi:10.1038/s41598-019-46362-x.
  • Dowdy, Pepler, Di Luca, Cavicchia, Mills, Evans, Louis, McInnes, Walsh, 2019: Review of Australian east coast low pressure systems and associated extremes. Climate Dynamics, 7, doi:10.1007/s00382-019-04836-8 .
  • Dowdy & Catto, 2017: Extreme weather caused by concurrent cyclone, front and thunderstorm occurrences. Scientific Reports, 7, https://www.nature.com/articles/srep40359.pdf.
  • Dowdy, Grose, Timbal, Moise, Ekstrom, Bhend & Wilson, 2015: Rainfall in Australia's eastern seaboard: a review of confidence in projections based on observations and physical processes. Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Journal, 65(1), 107-126.
  • Dowdy, 2014: Long-term changes in Australian tropical cyclone numbers. Atmospheric Science Letters, 5(4), doi:10.1002/asl2.502.
  • Dowdy, Mills, Timbal & Wang, 2014: Fewer large waves projected for eastern Australia due to decreasing storminess. Nature Climate Change, 4, doi:10.1038/NCLIMATE2142.
Andrew Dowdy-photo

Andrew Dowdy

Expertise:
  • Hazards and risk assessment
  • Seasonal and intraseasonal prediction
  • Climate projections from global climate models and downscaling
  • Data visualisation techniques
  • Analyses of large observational datasets
  • Large-scale oceanic and atmospheric modes of variability (e.g., the El Nino-Southern Oscillation and others)
  • Statistical methods
  • Project management
  • Science communication
Publications:
- Google Scholar page
- ResearchGate page
Committees:
  • Climate Change Project Team appointed by the Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council
  • Bureau of Meteorology representative on Science Advisory Panel of the Victorian Coastal Council
  • Australian Science Communicators
  • Member of the Climate risk Measurement Standards Initiative (CMSI)