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Dr. Thorsten Kiefer

Thorsten Kiefer

Executive Director
JPI Oceans
Rue du Trône 4
1000 Brussels

  +32 (0) 2 626 16 65

Expertise & Interests

Overview / specialty        Research background in surface and deep ocean circulation on glacial-interglacial to decadal time scales.
Professional background in research management, coordination and facilitation, also in catering to science-policy world and other interfaces between research and societal partners.
PAGES interests        Ocean circulation and carbon - OC3, PEOPLE 3000, Future Earth, World Climate Research Programme, PAGES-endorsed projects
Topics        Biogeochemical processes, Extreme events, Monsoon, Ocean dynamics, Sustainability, Thresholds and abrupt changes, Warmer Worlds
Timescales        Anthropocene (last 100 years), Future projection, Holocene, Last millennia, Last glacial cycle, Observational period, Pleistocene
Regions        Global, World ocean
Archives        Ocean sediments
Sector        Science management, Science policy
Discipline        (Paleo)climatology, (Paleo)oceanography




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., Elder?eld, 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, doi:10.1002/2013GC004994.

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.

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.

Wang, B., Wang, P., Kiefer, T. (2012) Global Monsoon. Climate Dynamics 39(5).

Wolff, E., Barbante, C., Goosse, H., Kiefer, T., Rousseau, D.-D. (2011) Clarifications about the concept and review process of Climate of the Past. Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-terrestrial Physics 73, 2043-2043.

Kiefer, T. (2010) When Still Waters Ran Deep. Science 329(5989), 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.

Villalba, R., Grosjean, M., Kiefer, T. (2009) Long-term multi-proxy climate reconstructions and dynamics in South America (LOTRED-SA): State of the art and perspectives. Paleogeography, Paleoclimatology, Paleoecology. 281, 175-179.

Witton, L. & Kiefer, T. (2009) New Strategic Plan and Data Portal for Past Global Change Science. Eos Transactions 90(46):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, doi:10.1038/ngeo660.

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

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

Crucifix, M., Claussen, M., Ganssen, G., Guiot, J., Guo, Z., Kiefer, T., Loutre, M.-F., Rousseau, D.-D., Wolff, E., 2009. Preface "Climate change: from the geological past to the uncertain future – a symposium honouring André Berger". Climate of The Past 5, 707-711.

Gebhardt, H., Sarnthein, M., Grootes, P. M., Kiefer, T., Kuehn, H., Schmieder, F., and Röhl, U. (2008). Paleonutrient and productivity records from the subarctic North Pacific for Pleistocene glacial terminations I to V. Paleoceanography 23, PA4212. Data: doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.701578

Galbraith, E. D., Kienast, M., Jaccard, S. L., Pedersen, T. F., Brunelle, B. G., Sigman, D. M., and Kiefer, T. (2008). Consistent relationship between global climate and surface nitrate utilization in the western subarctic Pacific throughout the last 500 ky. Paleoceanography 23, PA2212, doi:10.1029/2007PA001518.

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

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

Kiefer, T., McCave, I. N., and Elderfield, H. (2006). Antarctic control on tropical Indian Ocean sea surface temperature and hydrography. Geophysical Research Letters 33, L24612, doi:10.1029/2006GL027097.
To download this paper go to
The following code is both the login ID and password: 16789824
Data: doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.610271

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

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

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

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

Kiefer, T., and Kienast, M. (2005). 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.

McCave, I. N., Kiefer, T., Thornalley, D. J. R., and Elderfield, H. (2005). 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.

Kucera, M., Weinelt, M., Kiefer, T., Pflaumann, U., Hayes, A., Weinelt, M., Chen, M.-T., Mix, A. C., Barrows, T. T., Cortijo, E., Duprat, J., Juggins, S., and Waelbroeck, C. (2005). Reconstruction of sea-surface temperatures from assemblages of planktonic foraminifera: multi-technique approach based on geographically constrained calibration data sets and its application to glacial Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Quaternary Science Reviews 24, 951-998.

Waelbroeck, C., Mulitza, S., Spero, H., Dokken, T., Kiefer, T., and Cortijo, E. (2005). A global compilation of late Holocene planktonic foraminiferal [delta] 18O: relationship between surface water temperature and [delta] 18O. Quaternary Science Reviews 24, 853-868.

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

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

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

Weinelt, M., Rosell-Melé, A., Pflaumann, U., Sarnthein, M., and Kiefer, T. (2003). 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.

Kiefer, T., Lorenz, S., Schulz, M., Lohmann, G., Sarnthein, M., and Elderfield, H. (2002). Response of precipitation over Greenland and the adjacent ocean to North Pacific warm spells during Dansgaard-Oeschger stadials. Terra Nova 14, 295-300.

Bassinot, F., Baltzer, A., Chen, M.-T., DeDeckker, P., Khuhnt, W., Levitan, M., Nurnberg, D., Oba, T., Prentice, M., Sanrthein, M., Situmorang, M., Tiedemann, R., Holbourn, A., Kiefer, T., Pflaumann, U., and Rothe, S. (2002). "Scientific Report of the WEPAMA Cruise, MD122/IMAGES VII." Institut Francais pour la Recherche et la Technologie Polaires, France.

Kiefer, T., Sarnthein, M., Erlenkeuser, H., Grootes, P., and Roberts, A. (2001). North Pacific response to millennial-scale changes in ocean circulation over the last 60 ky. Paleoceanography 16, 179-189.

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 & 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.

Park, M.-H., Kiefer, T., Zahn, R., 2001. Surface- and deep-water hydrography and meltwater events in the mid-latitude North Atlantic Ocean over the past 160,000 years. Atlantic Geology 37, 153-160.

Kiefer, T., Produktivität und Temperaturen im subtropischen Nordatlantik: zyklische und abrupte Veränderungen im späten Quartär, Berichte-Reports, Geol.-Paläontol. Inst. Univ. Kiel, 90, 1-127, 1998.

Pflaumann, U., D. Adelung, T. Anders, H. Beese, O. Costello, S. Garthe, T. Kiefer, J. Simstich, E. Steen & A. Völker, Bericht über die "POSEIDON"-Reise 210/2 Reykjavik- Reykjavik, 13.08. bis 29.08.1995, Berichte aus dem Sonderforschungsbereich 313, 62, 1-62, 1996.


Guest-edited special issues:

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

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

P. Wang, B. Wang and T. Kiefer (Eds), 2012: Global Monsoon, Climate Dynamics 39(5), 1043-1218

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.

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


- Co-chief editor for Climate of the Past
- Editorial Advisory Board for The Anthropocene Review