Photo of a smiling James Renwick taken in February 2023.
Professor of Physical Geography, climate change researcher ,
Victoria University of Wellington - Te Herenga Waka


I am a climate scientist with a background in meteorology and weather/climate prediction. My main area of expertise is in seasonal to interannual climate variations, including teleconnections and Southern Hemisphere mid-latitude circulation variability. I have over 40 years' experience in the area and have been involved in writing the last three IPCC Working Group 1 Assessment Reports (AR4, AR6, AR6). I have four years' experience as a Commissioner on the NZ CLimate Change Commission and have worked on shaping climate change policy for several years. I am also an experienced science communicator, winning the NZ Prime Minister's Science Communication Prize in 2018.

Qualifications and credentials
PhD, 1991-1995, Completed, University of Washington, Seattle
MSc, 1996-1999, Completed, Victoria University of Wellington
BSc (Hons), 1975-1977, Completed, University of Canterbury
Meteorological Society of New Zealand, President, 1985-2024 (President 2000-2002)
Royal Society of New Zealand, Councillor, 1988-2024
New Zealand Association of Scientists, President, 1996-2024 (President 2009-2011)
Americal Meteorological Society, Head of Southern Hemisphere committee, 1992-2024
Americal Geophysical Union, N/A, 1996-2024
Work experience
New Zealand Meteorological Service, Research Scientist, Kelburn, Wellington, NZ
NIWA, Principal Scientist, Greta Point, Wellington, NZ
Victoria University of Wellington - Te Herenga Waka, Professor, VUW Kelburn campus, Wellington, NZ
Atmospheric science
Statistical data analysis
Climate change analysis
Science communication
South Pacific Convergence Zone dynamics, variability and impacts in a changing climate, Nature, https://www.nature.com/articles/s43017-020-0078-2
Spatiotemporal Trends in Near-Natural New Zealand River Flow, Journal of Hydrometeorology, https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1175/JHM-D-22-0037.1
Southern Hemisphere Storm Tracks and Large-Scale Variability: What Do the Latest Reanalyses Say?, Journal of Climate, https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1175/JCLI-D-22-0726.1
Southern Hemisphere circulation and relations with sea ice and sea surface temperature, Journal of Climate, https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0442(2002)015%3C3058:SHCARW%3E2.0.CO;2