Ulrike Lohmann

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Ulrike Lohmann (2020)

Ulrike Lohmann (born 1966 in Berlin[1]) is a climate scientist. She is a professor of atmospheric physics at ETH Zurich.[2]


Lohmann comes from Kiel, the daughter of a teacher and an SPD politician.[2] She did a voluntary year in an SOS Children’s Village in Nigeria.[2] This was followed by studies in ethnology and geography.[2] Inspired by environmental reports on climate change, she studied meteorology in Mainz and Hamburg from 1988 to 1993.[2][1] She received her doctorate in 1996 from the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg.[1] She first worked as an assistant and associate professor of atmospheric sciences at Dalhousie University in Halifax.[1] She has been a full professor of atmospheric physics at the Institute for Atmosphere and Climate at ETH Zurich since 2004.[1]

She lives on the shores of Lake Zurich.[2] Her passions are endurance sports and rowing.[2]


Lohmann is concerned with the interplay between global warming, aerosols and cloud formation. She once summarised her findings on this as follows: “We assume that in a warmer climate there are fewer low clouds, but more high ones. That would mean that the clouds would have a warming effect on balance.”[2]

She also addresses the possibility of geoengineering through cirrus cloud thinning.[3] However, she is critical of such interventions: “As it stands, cirrus cloud thinning should only be seen as a thought experiment that helps to understand how ice clouds form.”[4]

She is one of the lead authors of the Fourth and Fifth Assessment Reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).[1]

In 2019, Lohmann was among the signatories of a statement on student protests for climate action to draw attention to the climate crisis.[5] She stresses the importance of climate scientists showing solidarity with the global climate strike movement. Thus, she once said in this regard, “We know enough to be able to make a political statement as well.”[2]

Publications (selection)

  • U. Lohmann, J. Feichter: Global indirect aerosol effects: a review. In: Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics. Vol. 5, No. 3, 2005, pp. 715-737.
  • U. Lohmann, B. Gasparini: A cirrus cloud climate dial? In: Science. Vol. 357, No. 6348, 2017, pp. 248-249. doi:10.1126/science.aan3325
  • T. Storelvmo, T. Leirvik, U. Lohmann, P. C. Phillips, M. Wild: Disentangling greenhouse warming and aerosol cooling to reveal Earth’s climate sensitivity. In Nature Geoscience. Vol. 9, No. 4, 2016, p. 286. doi:10.1038/ngeo2670

Awards (excerpt)

  • 2018: Honorary doctorate from Stockholm University[2]
  • 2018: Highly cited researcher by Thomson Reuters[6]
  • 2017: Highly cited researcher by Thomson Reuters[7] * 2016: Highly cited researcher by Thomson Reuters[8]
  • 2015: Highly cited researcher by Thomson Reuters[9]
  • 2014: Highly cited researcher by Thomson Reuters (top 1% cited papers published 2002-2013)[10]
  • 2014: Admission to the Geosciences Section as a member (matriculation no. 7587) of the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina
  • 2013: The ETH Zurich Golden Tricycle for family-friendly leadership[11]

Web links

  • Member entry of Ulrike Lohmann (with picture and curriculum vitae) at the German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina


  1. a b c d e f
  2. a b c d e f g h i j The cloud woman.In: Der Bund. Der Bund, retrieved 22 December 2019 (Swiss High German).
  3. Lohmann & Gasparini, doi :10.1126/science.aan3325
  4. Climate manipulation Using technology to combat global warming.In: BerlinerZeitung. Retrieved on December 22, 2019.
  5. 12,000 academics get behind the striking students.In: Sci Logs. Sci Logs, retrieved 22 December 2019.
  6. Seven Highly Cited Researchers 2018 from the D-USYS.Retrieved May 1, 2020.
  7. Highly Cited Researchers 2017.Retrieved 1 May 2020.
  8. Highly cited researchers at IAC.Retrieved 1 May 2020(English).
  9. Reuters/Carlos Barra:The world’s most influential scientific minds 2015.Thomson Reuters, accessed January 5, 2020.
  10. Reuters/ Tony Gentile:The world’s most influential scientific minds 2014.Thomson Reuters, retrieved 1 May 2020 (English).
  11. Employees suggest exemplary supervisors.Retrieved May 1, 2020.