Autumn maples - James Kay

Meeting Information

UCAR 2001 October Meetings
NCAR Mesa Laboratory
Boulder, CO
8 - 10 October 2001

| Board of Trustees | UCAR Members | Academic Affiliates | URC |

- Back to UCAR Members -


Annual Members' Meeting
10-11 October 2000
Boulder, Colorado




Trustee Chairman Otis Brown called the Annual Meeting of the UCAR Members to order at 1:00 pm on Tuesday, 10 October, in the Main Seminar Room at the Mesa Laboratory in Boulder, Colorado. Brown welcomed members of the UCAR Board of Trustees, Members' Representatives (56 of the 63 institutions were represented), Academic Affiliates' representatives, members of the University Relations Committee, NSF colleagues, and guests. Brown reminded meeting participants that this Members' meeting marks the close of the year-long 40th anniversary celebration. After reviewing the agenda, it was regularly moved, seconded, and passed to adopt the agenda for the 10-11 October Members' meeting as presented.

Present for all or portions of the meeting were the following Members' Representatives and officially-appointed substitutes:

University of Alabama in Huntsville

Donald J. Perkey

University of Alaska-Fairbanks

Glenn E. Shaw

University at Albany, SUNY

Kenneth L. Demerjian, Vincent P. Idone

University of Arizona

Benjamin M. Herman

California Institute of Technology

Paul O. Wennberg

University of California at Davis

Richard D. Grotjahn, Susan Ustin

University of California at Los Angeles

Jochen Stutz

University of Chicago

Noboru Nakamura, Fred Stafford

University of Colorado

Robert E. Sievers, Peter Webster

Colorado State University

Kathi Delehoy, Stephen A. Rutledge

Cornell University

Kraig Adler

Drexel University

Frederick B. House, Susan S. Kilham

Florida State University

Donald J. Foss, Peter S. Ray

Georgia Institute of Technology

Robert G. Roper

Harvard University

Brian Farrell

University of Hawaii

Thomas A. Schroeder

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Donald Wuebbles

University of Iowa

Gregory R. Carmichael

Iowa State University

William J. Gutowski, Jr., Peter W. Rabideau

Johns Hopkins University

Gary K. Ostrander, Darrell Strobel

University of Maryland at College Park

Eugenia Kalnay, Theodore Rosenberg

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Lodovica Illari

McGill University

David Straub

University of Miami

Otis Brown, Claes Rooth

University of Michigan

Lennard A. Fisk

University of Missouri

Donald E. Hagen, Stephen Mudrick

Naval Postgraduate School

Carlyle H. Wash

University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Blaine L. Blad

University of Nevada

James Hudson, David E. Kingsmill

University of New Hampshire

Robert Talbot

New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology

Peter F. Gerity, William P. Winn

New York University

Richard Kleeman

North Carolina State University

Len J. Pietrafesa, Frederick H. Semazzi

Ohio State University

Jay S. Hobgood, John Rayner

University of Oklahoma

Frederick H. Carr

Oregon State University

Jeffrey R. Barnes

Pennsylvania State University

John A. Dutton, Dennis W. Thomson

Princeton University

Leo Donner

Purdue University

Ernest M. Agee, Gary E. Isom

University of Rhode Island

John T. Merrill

Rice University

Arthur A. Few

Saint Louis University

Patricia Hagen, Frank Y-J. Lin

Scripps, University of California, San Diego

Joel Norris

Stanford University

Stephen Monismith

Texas A&M University

David Prior, Mary Jo Richardson

University of Texas at Austin

Clark R. Wilson

Texas Tech University

Tim Doggett

University of Toronto

Roland List

University of Utah

Steven K. Krueger, Gerald Mace

Utah State University

W. John Raitt

University of Washington

Christopher S. Bretherton

Washington State University

Brian Lamb, James Petersen

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Matthew H. Hitchman

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Anastasios A. Tsonis

University of Wyoming

Gabor Vali

York University

Peter A. Taylor

Present for all or portions of the meeting were the following Academic Affiliates:

College of Charleston

Laney Mills

Jackson State University

Paul J. Croft

University of Louisiana at Monroe

Lynn L. LeBlanc

Lyndon State College

Bruce Berryman

Universidad Metropolitana

Juan F. Arratia

Millersville University of Pennsylvania

Richard Clark

Plymouth State College

Joseph Zabransky Jr.

Rutgers University

James Miller

St. Cloud State University

Alan Anderson

San Jose State University

Jindra Goodman

United States Naval Academy

David R. Smith


Secretary Ronald Smith presented the minutes from the 1999 Annual Members' Meeting and asked for approval. It was moved, seconded, and passed to approve the minutes as written.


Treasurer Lyn Hutton presented the Consolidated Statement of Funding to date. She reported that UCAR is "healthy and experiencing some growth." She noted that 54% of UCAR funding comes from NSF. The rest of the apparent growth is due to timing issues for the receipt of some funds and for the $8M for the Mesa Lab renovation. The commercial area reflects the sale of WITI, Inc. to Life Minders, Inc. Some programs, such as DLESE, VSP, HIAPER, and RAP, have seen some real growth. Hutton also noted that much of the $18M in carryover is already committed. Regarding investments, Hutton recognized that there are some reductions in gains due to the correction in the financial markets, however, we are still ahead of projected figures. It was moved, seconded, and passed to receive the treasurer's report as presented.


Hutton reported that the Audit and Finance Committee has recommended that Deloitte and Touche once again be named as the UCAR auditors for FY2001 and asked the Members to approve. It was moved, seconded, and passed to approve Deloitte and Touche as auditors for FY2001.


Chairman Brown reported on the following activities since the October 1999 Board meeting:

  • Trustee Meetings - He reviewed the Trustee meetings held in February in Washington, D.C. and the June meeting held in Boulder. The minutes from these meetings are on the web at Brown encouraged the Members to read these and call or e-mail either Rick Anthes or Brown with comments or questions.
  • AMS/UCAR Fellow -- Candidates are currently being interviewed and AMS/UCAR's first Fellow should be selected before the end of October.
  • Community Survey -- There were nearly 600 respondents (almost 30%) to the survey sent to the community. Details of the survey will be further discussed later in the Members' meeting.
  • UCAR at 40 -- This document highlights the UCAR and NCAR achievements over the past 40 years and includes excellent essays by seven members of the community. This document is available at this meeting and on the web; it can be accessed at
  • Joint UCAR-AMS Document A National Priority: Building Resilience to Natural Hazards -- This document was created to educate the next administration and Congress. Its focus is natural hazards and gives UCAR a vehicle to cooperate with a number of scientific societies and thus have more impact.
  • NRC Ranking Study -- Jack Fellows is monitoring this activity. Currently, funds need to be raised to do the study and then the methodology will be designed for a study in 2003. Input from professional societies is being sought. There are concerns about how the cross-disciplinary nature of atmospheric sciences will be captured in the data.
  • Thanks -- Chairman Brown thanked outgoing Board members Conway Leovy, Maggie Tolbert, Lyn Hutton and Len Fisk for their effort, time, and contributions to the Board. Their terms officially end at the February 2001 Board meeting.


UCAR President Richard Anthes reminded the Members that his written report is on the web, and in order to give more time for discussion and interaction, he briefly highlighted the following UCAR, NCAR, and UOP activities:

  • Advocacy. The universities and UCAR have contributed significantly this year to the support of science overall and the support for doubling funding for NSF. The Bond/Mikulski letter urging the doubling of the NSF budget, and the editorial by Varmus urging support for basic research helped to increase funding for science.
  • NSF Director Rita Colwell, NSF/GEO Director Margaret Leinen, NSF Deputy Director Joseph Bordogna, ATM Director Jarvis Moyers and the Head of ATM's UCAR and Lower Atmospheric Facilities Oversight Section Cliff Jacobs visited UCAR for several days of celebration and discussion of issues important to the atmospheric sciences community in mid-June that focused on NSF's 50th anniversary as well as NCAR's and UCAR's 40th.
  • The American Physical Society (APS) site visit to assess the workplace climate for woman scientists at UCAR occurred on 13-14 July. The final report was received on 6 October. Overall, they found the climate for women is good at UCAR/NCAR/UOP; areas to be considered for improvement include communication and family-friendliness issues. UCAR management is considering the APS's recommendations and will send a response to the APS site team shortly.
  • The SOARS program is recognized nationally as a very successful program (82% retention rate) and a model for an education/outreach/mentoring program. Currently, 40 universities have signed on. DOE has approved $637K for the next four years, and a proposal to NSF for $1.7M has been reviewed favorably.

UOP activities that Anthes highlighted included COMET, DLESE, Unidata, SuomiNet, and COSMIC. COMET, which supports the professional development of operational forecasters, recently won the Outstanding Achievement Award at the National Hurricane Conference for their Community Hurricane Preparedness module. Nine new modules are being developed. DLESE supports the Earth System Science (ESS) community's digital library building effort by helping educators and students create, find, evaluate, and use resources. Modeled after Unidata, DLESE is a community-owned, governed, and designed program. Unidata enables universities to acquire and use data. Larger data flows and new data types are being released and developed. There is also growing excitement over Unidata's Java software development. Access to data streams ranked near the top of university needs in the community survey. GST is developing SuomiNet, which uses GPS technology and the Internet to provide real-time tropospheric and ionospheric data. A forum on SuomiNet applications will be held at the AMS meeting in January 2001. COSMIC is a collaborative science project among UCAR, U.S. and Taiwan universities, several US federal agencies, and Taiwan's National Space Program Office for the launch of a constellation of six micro-satellites to collect atmospheric data for weather prediction, climate, and ionospheric research.

Anthes further reported on a few NCAR science highlights, such as RAP's wind shear work and MMM's wildfire research, both addressing societal needs with the hope of saving lives. Additional programs and areas of science included Severe Thunderstorm Electrification and Precipitation Study (STEPS) whose purpose is to to achieve a better understanding of the interactions between kinematics, precipitation production, and electrification in severe thunderstorms on the High Plains; Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM) which is trying to model the whole atmosphere and the outer reaches of the sun; NCAR Graphics which is used at over 1500 organizations and is a mainstay visualization package for earth system science; and aerosol climate forcing, which looks at the role aerosols have in global change.


NCAR Director Tim Killeen referred to his written report on the web and highlighted the following activities:

NCAR Budget Process. Killeen reported on the new budget process he recently instituted—an annual program and budget review of each division's NSF and non-NSF projects. The budget process will include a review of FY2000 accomplishments and FY2001 plans, new initiatives and special opportunities, mapping to NSF initiatives, problem areas, interdisciplinary activities, and institutional values.

Demographic Challenge. Increasing the number of Scientists I's is being addressed by instituting the Scientist I Hiring Program (adding at least four new Scientist I's in the next year), offering increased opportunities for scientific career development through the NCAR Scientist Assembly and the establishment of the Early Career Scientist Forum, and expanding the role for the ASP program to help in the mentoring and growth of early career scientists. The new Mentoring Guidelines ( apply to all NCAR staff and will emphasize a plan for career development.

Scientific and Technology Program Highlights:

  • Weather Research and Forecast Model (WRF): The WRF Model represents the development of an advanced mesoscale forecast and data assimilation system. This will increase both the understanding and forecast skill of important mesoscale precipitation systems and promote closer ties between the research and operational forecasting communities.
  • Ocean Component of the Community Climate System Model (CCSM): Improvements in the ocean component of CCSM contributed to the CCSM becoming the first model to maintain stable sea surface temperature distribution without the use of flux corrections at the atmosphere-ocean interface.
  • Measurements of Pollution in the Troposphere (MOPITT): This space-based instrument provides global observations of carbon monoxide and methane in the lower atmosphere, where weather evolves and humans routinely disturb the environment.
  • Technology Transfer: Taking basic research and developing societally useful products such as RAP's aviation icing and air turbulence developments is an important part of NCAR's mission.
  • Predictions for Policy Makers: A new book has come out of the Environmental and Societal Impacts Group (ESIG) which seeks to provide insight into the promise and limitations of prediction of complex environmental phenomena (such as climate change, earthquakes, and extreme weather events) as a tool for decision-makers.

A Virtual Center. One of Killeen's goals is to make NCAR more of a "virtual center". Currently, a projection system is being installed in the new SCD visualization lab, which will allow the embedding of multiple data feeds. This will provide for maximum collaboration opportunities using information technology.

NCAR Strategic Planning. The planning process involves a Steering Committee consisting of the NCAR Directors and self organized groups developing around research topics such as wildfire research, impact of megacities on the environment, quantifying precipitation dynamics across scales, and planetary atmospheres and space weather. Emerging themes for strategic planning include information technology, education for the 21st century, and advancing fundamental knowledge of the Earth System. Killeen envisions NCAR as an integrator and a national center where the toughest challenges are undertaken, and invites comments from the university community. He hopes to have the strategic plan completed by next summer.


Anthes introduced Roberta Johnson, the new UCAR Director of Education and Outreach (E&O). She is heading up the strategic planning for education and will be soliciting input from Members during the Forum discussions. Once a draft mission statement and goals have been developed, it will be sent to the universities and NSF for further feedback. Johnson reviewed the current draft mission and goals and gave an overview of the existing programs in the education and outreach area which included: Project Laboratory Experience in Atmospheric Research at NCAR (LEARN), Collaboration Linking Mentors in Atmospheric Science for Teacher Enhancement (CLIMATE), COMET, Digital Library for Earth System Education (DLESE), Web Weather for Kids, Windows to the Universe, SOARS, and informal education programs such as the Mesa Lab Visitor Outreach center, Super Science Saturdays, Earth Day events, and collaboration with museums and science centers.


John Dutton, Chairman of the UCAR Foundation Board, reported on the activities of the UCAR Foundation for the past year. He reminded the Members that the Foundation was developed to license technologies and form companies to profit from those technologies and thus benefit UCAR/NCAR/UOP. He reported on the recent sale of WITI to Lifeminders, Inc.


Chairman Brown briefly reminded the Members that the Forum is an opportunity not only to celebrate the 40th anniversary of UCAR, but also to engage the community in deciding the priorities and challenges facing the community in the future. Input from last year's forum was used to help design the survey sent to the community.

Anthes reviewed the general results of the survey. The survey showed that, overall, the community interacts strongly with all parts of UCAR and would like to see increased service and interactions, especially in the areas of data sets or data streams and educational and/or training material. The survey sought to assess the quality and number of interactions with UCAR programs and divisions and to understand future needs and expectations from the broad community of member and affiliate universities and colleges, sponsors, facility users, scientific collaborators, and governance participants. Broader issues affecting the research community include: the place of inter- and multi-disciplinary research in a primarily discipline-organized research environment; the need for more and better instrumentation development and education; the sources and use of observational data; data access and management; opinions on how research priorities are, and should be, determined; the appropriate allocation of the nation's research resources among field research, modeling, theory, and laboratory work; and the quality and quantity of graduate students attracted to the atmospheric and related sciences. (Detailed results of the survey can be viewed at

Chairman Brown introduced Kelvin Drogemeier, the current Chairman of the URC, who provided an overview of the five breakout sessions, the chairperson, presenter, and rapporteur of each. They are as follows:

Observational Facilities, Instrumentation and Field Program Support
Chairman: Ron Smith (Yale University)
Presenters: Dave Carlson (ATD/NCAR) and Jeff Stith (ATD/NCAR)
Rapporteur: David Kingsmill (Desert Research Institute)

Computing Facilities/Community Models
Chairman: Chris Bretherton (University of Washington)
Presenters: Maurice Blackmon (CGD/NCAR), Al Kellie (SCD/NCAR),
Bill Kuo (MMM/NCAR), and Joe Klemp (MMM/NCAR)
Rapporteur: Kelvin Droegemeier (University of Oklahoma)

Data: Real-Time and Archived Data -- Data Sets, Data Streams
Chairman: John Merrill (University of Rhode Island)
Presenters: Dave Fulker (Unidata/UOP), Steve Worley (SCD/NCAR)
Rapporteur: Everette Joseph (Howard University)

Education and Training
Chairman: Gene Takle (Iowa State University)
Presenters: Roberta Johnson (HAO-NCAR/E&O-UCAR), Mary Marlino (DLESE/UOP), Tim Spangler (COMET/UOP), Kaye Howe (Howe and Associates) and Peter Gerity (New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology)
Rapporteur: Ben Domenico (Unidata/UOP)

Recruiting Graduate Students
Chairman: Dennis Thomson (Pennsylvania State University)
Presenter: Al Cooper (ASP/NCAR)
Rapporteur: Matt Hitchman (University of Wisconsin-Madison)


The Members recessed to attend the reception and 40th anniversary banquet.




Chairman Brown outlined the legal and fiduciary responsibilities of the Trustees and, in the absence of Nominating Committee Chairwoman Paola Rizzoli, presented the report. A mail survey had been conducted to solicit suggestions for nominations from the Members Representatives and others for Trustee and Member committee slates; the results were compiled and provided to the Committee in advance of the meeting. The following slates were the result of their deliberations:

The slate of Institutional Trustees and Trustee-at-Large is as follows:

Institutional Trustee Candidates:

Gregory Carmichael (University of Iowa)

William Cotton (Colorado State University)

Leo Donner (Princeton University)

Eugenia Kalnay (University of Maryland)

Soroosh Sorooshian (University of Arizona)

Gabor Vali (University of Wyoming)


Patricia Woodworth (University of Chicago)  

Brown reviewed and recommended the voting procedure used in the past several years:

The four candidates receiving the highest majorities will be elected Trustees. If all four positions are filled on the first ballot, the election is complete. If fewer than four Trustees are elected on the first ballot, then the name(s) of those so elected will be removed from the ballot, and an additional ballot or ballots will be taken until all Trustee positions are filled.

It was regularly moved, seconded, and passed to adopt the voting procedure as proposed.

Brown then recommended that Steve Dickson and Susan Warner be appointed as tellers. It was regularly moved, seconded, and passed to appoint Steve Dickson and Susan Warner as tellers.

Brown recommended adoption of the slate of Trustee candidates. It was moved and seconded to close the nominations and to adopt the slate. There being no nominations from the floor, the motion passed.

Election results were announced later in the meeting but are reported here for convenience:

Institutional Trustees (Three-year terms)


Leo Donner (Princeton University)

Eugenia Kalnay (University of Maryland)

Soroosh Sorooshian (University of Arizona)

Gabor Vali (University of Wyoming)


Patricia Woodworth (University of Chicago) (Three-year term)

The following nominations were submitted for UCAR Members' committees:

Membership Committee (Three-year Term)

Anthony Brazel (Arizona State University)

Art Few (Rice University)

Robert Talbot (University of New Hampshire).


University Relations Committee (Three-Year Term)

Eric Betterton (University of Arizona) (for another three term)
Efi Foufoula-Georgiou (University of Minnesota)
Everette Joseph (Howard University)
Pat Reiff (Rice University)

Members Nominating Committee (One-Year Term)

Paola Malanotte-Rizzoli, Chairwoman (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

Otis Brown (University of Miami)

Fred Carr (University of Oklahoma)

John Merrill (University of Rhode Island)

Mary Jo Richardson (Texas A&M University)

Scientific Programs Evaluation Committee (SPEC) (Five-Year Term)

Robert Duce (Chairman) (Texas A&M University)

Susan Avery (University of Colorado)

Franco Einaudi (NASA)

Eric Barron (Pennsylvania State University)

Chris Fairall (NOAA)

Daniel Jacob (Harvard University)

Bert Semtner (Naval Postgraduate School)

Lisa Sloan (University of California-Santa Cruz)


There were no nominations from the floor. It was moved, seconded, and passed to elect the slate of Members committees as submitted.


April Burke and Mark Burnham of Lewis-Burke Associates reviewed their legislative activities for this past year:

  • Monitor and support science budgets for NSF, NASA, NOAA, DOE, and FAA.
  • Monitor and respond to science policy issues and legislation relevant to the UCAR community. Issues this past year included an onerous database bill (it was defeated -- the proposed legislation would have restricted universities' access to databases); H-1B Visas (provides a permanent exemption for universities and government research labs from the cap on visas for foreign visitors -- this was a very big "win", and the UCAR community's response had a tremendous impact on the bill's passage); NWS non-compete bill (this was defeated -- it would place severe restrictions on NWS activity); Bond-Mikulski doubling initiative (an authorization encouraging Congress to double funding for science and in particular for NSF).
  • Advocate for community priorities, for example the USWRP and the proposed 17% increase in NSF's FY 2001 budget.

Cindy Schmidt reviewed the draft of advocacy priorities for FY 2002 which include supporting the budgets of the above-listed agencies. This past year the Office of Government Affairs (OGA) hosted four briefings for Congressional staff, which included the East Coast January snowstorm, aviation weather research, wildfire research, and space weather. Nine "action alerts" on various science and basic research areas were issued to the community, which increased their response in writing and contacting their representatives in Congress. Typically, Congress gets fewer than 1000 letters on various issues. When they hear from a significant number of people on an issue like the H-1B Visa, it has a positive impact. Schmidt recognized and thanked Ben Herman, Eugenia Kalnay, Jim Miller, Gary Ostrander, Glenn Shaw, Fred Stafford, and Don Wuebbles as those who responded the most to the action alerts. Schmidt also encouraged the Members to personally visit their Congressional representatives and their staff. OGA has a new brochure and Board of Trustee David Skaggs has made a video presentation (viewed at ) on the most effective ways to reach members of Congress.


Mary Jo Richardson (Texas A&M), Chairwoman of the Membership Committee, thanked her fellow committee members who worked hard on reviewing the application materials and visiting the three universities to be considered for election to UCAR Membership and the ten universities up for Membership renewal. She reviewed the membership criteria and reported that the committee, after careful review, recommended election of Arizona State University, Howard University, and Rutgers University for membership. The committee felt that these three institutions were great examples of interdisciplinary research. A motion was moved and seconded regarding the election of each of these three universities. Arizona State University, Howard University, and Rutgers University were approved for UCAR membership.

Richardson reported that the Committee recommended re-election of the following universities to UCAR Membership for eight-year terms beginning in January 2001. It was moved, seconded, and passed to re-elect the University of Alabama at Huntsville, Drexel University, Iowa State University, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, Ohio State University, Rice University, Stanford University, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the University of Wyoming, and Yale University. The Members applauded the excellent work that the Membership Committee had done.


Rich Clark (Millersville University) reported on the meeting of the Academic Affiliates. Although Rutgers University is now a UCAR Member, the Academic Affiliates have gained a new Affiliate, Dalhousie University. The three main concerns of discussion at the Affiliates meeting were resources, education, and research. There was also discussion concerning how the Affiliates could have an expanded role in geosciences. Many of the graduates from Affiliate universities go on into the graduate programs at Member universities. Clark is the chair of the Academic Affiliates for the next three years and welcomes questions or ideas.


After summarizing the charge to the committee, Chairman Kelvin Droegemeier thanked the retiring members of the URC and welcomed the new URC members. He expressed his and the URC's appreciation for the NCAR liaisons who have been so instrumental in helping to give the URC a better perspective of the NCAR divisions. Droegemeier pointed out that one of the URC's main activities over the years has been to review NCAR's and UOP's non-core proposals. They have proposed ways to streamline this process since the URC's role is not one of being a watchdog but of oversight.

Droegemeier said that overall, there has been "a wonderful, healthy dialog between the URC and UCAR". However, he also noted that there seems to be a lack of understanding about UCAR in many of the universities. To address this the URC has proposed holding a special session on UCAR, NCAR and UOP programs and opportunities at the 2002 AMS Annual meeting. Droegemeier urged the Members to inform their institutions of the opportunities at NCAR and UCAR. The URC will continue to meet at a Member university for their spring meeting.


Jarvis Moyers, Director of NSF's ATM Division, reviewed the proposed FY 2001 budgets for NSF. The request is a 17% increase but a more realistic expectation of the actual increase in the budget is probably 13%. Within NSF's Geosciences Division, they are encouraging and supporting two programs: (a) USWRP, which includes hurricane and flood research to increase the accuracy of predictions, and the societal and economic impacts of weather such as hurricanes; and (b) the National Space Weather Program, which includes how the sun influences the upper atmosphere and technology systems like satellites, communication, navigation, and electric power distribution grids.

He also discussed the Information Technology Research (ITR) initiatives, which are NSF-wide. Currently, $100M has been requested for NSF's Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) Division, and another $90M has been requested which will be distributed across other NSF Directorates. A special emphasis for Geosciences (taken from NSF's Geosciences Beyond 2000) is the development of partnerships between geosciences, applied mathematics, and computer science. Moyers stated that depending upon the overall budget for the ITRs, there are likely to be three sizes of grants.

The National Science Board has established a task force to discover what is being supported across NSF in the environmental sciences, as they called for enhanced research in this area. Margaret Leinen, NSF Geosciences Director, has been assigned to develop an agency-wide response and to put into place the mechanism and priorities to accomplish this. Four high-priority areas have been identified for immediate investment: biological diversity and ecosystem functioning, hydrologic forecasting, infectious diseases and the environment, and land use dynamics.

Moyers also related the NSF's areas of focus in nanoscale science and engineering for FY2001: nano-biotechnology; new phenomena and structures, quantum control; integration at the nanoscale -- systems and architectures; interfaces in environment at nanoscale; nanoscale theory, modeling, and simulations; and education and societal implications.


Five breakout groups were formed from the key areas identified in the community-wide survey held earlier in the year and met in sessions the previous day. Chairs of each breakout session provided the following summaries of the session discussions. UCAR/NCAR will incorporate this community feedback into UCAR/NCAR planning activities.

Group 1: Observational Facilities, Instrumentation, and Field Program Support

Ron Smith summarized the relevant survey questions and issues and then NCAR's Dave Carlson and Jeff Stith presented UCAR and NCAR planning strategies relative to these community responses. The session participants provided the following feedback on these plans:

  • Need for increased NCAR staff and support for observing systems
  • Help develop a website catalog of instruments
  • Help enhance low cost observing systems
  • Improve the flexibility in the ATD deployment pool
  • Improve the process for community input into the ATD priority setting process
  • Assist in the private sector cloning of observing systems
  • Increase ASP and other post-docs in instrumentation
  • Help improve the data format, software support, and data delivery in field campaigns
  • Provide teaching kits, online instruction, and/or short courses at NCAR or in regions on instrumentation.

Group 2: Computing Facilities and Community Models

Chris Bretherton summarized the issues and then Maurice Blackmon, Al Kellie, Bill Kuo, and Joe Klemp presented some results of UCAR and NCAR planning. This includes the current state of community modeling such as the CCSM, MM5, WRF, MOZART (Model for OZone And Related chemical Tracers), the UCAR/NCAR computing facilities available to the community, and UCAR/NCAR's strategic plan for the next five years in this area. A panel of Leo Donner (Princeton), Jimy Dudhia (NCAR-MMM), Joel Norris (Scripps), Kelvin Droegemeier (University of Oklahoma), and session participants provided a number of perspectives:

The NCAR-based community models and computing facilities are an invaluable community asset. Community governance is in part a social experiment; two different groups are taking different governance approaches. Providing a number of physics/numeric options and relative ease of modification are important for science applications. A host of challenging computer science issues is involved in providing optimal frameworks for modeling, analysis, and visualization. These will have to involve the modeling groups, SCD, and community experts. Informal and user workshops help bring the modeling community together and foster mutual awareness/cooperation. Effective model diagnosis/improvement requires community organization and communication. The community will always push the envelope of possible applications (e.g. regional climate modeling with MM5).

Continued work is necessary to enhance the user interface including embedded documentation, graphics, etc. to minimize spin-up time. Portability and efficiency of use on NCAR and university computers are both priorities. Special institutional support and ideally some cross-agency commitments will be needed to keep these facilities cutting-edge.

Group 3: Data: Real-time and Archival Data, Data Sets, Data Streams

John Merrill summarized the survey questions and issues and then UCAR's Dave Fulker and NCAR's Steve Worley summarized UCAR/NCAR activities (spanning essentially all Divisions and Programs) that are intended to: improve access to data holdings; improve access to real-time flows, enhance data usability, facilitate data discovery, or support community interactions in these matters. Session participants then offered various perspectives on these activities including the view that data are most valuable when well used. Among the suggestions were that UCAR should:

  • Continue and extend efforts to improve access to data holdings and real-time flows (e.g., radar data) and also to enhance data usability, via advances in software, metadata, and means for data discovery
  • Explore innovative ways to reduce data access costs and address bandwidth constraints
  • Exploit distributed approaches and develop collaboration technologies that lead toward a goal of scientists as "curators" of data sets that exhibit quality, completeness, and integrity. Address related complexities such as preservation and cross-platform calibration consistency.

Group 4: Education and Training

Gene Takle summarized the issues; UCAR's Roberta Johnson, Mary Marlino, and Tim Spangler presented the current and proposed education and outreach activities across UCAR. Kaye Howe and Peter Gerity commented on the changing landscape of universities and education delivery/pedagogy including:

  • Aging of faculty and restructuring at universities
  • Role of interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary work
  • Expectations of faculty for tenure and promotion and instruction done by non-tenured faculty
  • Quality of incoming students and expectations of students with regard to university experiences
  • Shrinking or realigned budgets and public expectations of universities
  • Changes in pedagogy
  • Use of computer/network-based learning and distance education
  • New competitors challenging the roles of universities

The session participants then provided the following community perspectives on the UCAR and NCAR planning:

  • Support partnerships (including for-profits) that blend content and delivery systems
  • UCAR should not get into curriculum development, but should focus on creating high-quality modules that can be used in multiple applications
  • Inform students of career potential of training in atmospheric sciences -- do not consider them a failure if they don't go to graduate school to study atmospheric science
  • Support pre-college programs that convey the excitement of science and include discovery and hands-on experiences
  • Help universities develop effective tools for assessing the quality of atmospheric science programs and student preparation
  • Provide workshops, content materials, facility to allow faculty to create courses or components of courses relating to the atmospheric sciences (pre-college as well as colleges and universities)
  • Support laboratories and simulations in the virtual learning environment to engage students
  • Next Steps: web site to continue the dialog, development of working groups, and development of community proposal

Group 5: Recruiting Graduate Students

Dennis Thomson summarized the results from the graduate student survey and gave the participants a quick quiz on whether and how UCAR might be involved in recruiting activities for the community. The results of that quiz showed that all session participants thought UCAR should play a role in the recruitment of graduate students. NCAR's Al Cooper presented UCAR's ideas on possible recruiting activities and a brief survey of ASP post-docs on why they went into science and when they chose atmospheric science as their major field. The majority of the post-docs said that they chose atmospheric sciences in their undergraduate studies. The session participants then provided the university perspective on the UCAR recruiting ideas including:

  • Assume a more proactive role in graduate recruitment activities, such as a possible UCAR/AMS recruiting website for the discipline
  • Expand the initial UCAR Board of Trustee graduate student survey into a longitudinal study tracking demographics of students and professional careers
  • Continue programs that foster the increase of diversity in the field
  • Continue high-quality and responsive community support activities such as Unidata and COMET.


Chairman Brown asked Members to give feedback on the forum. The overwhelming majority of Members felt that these were useful, but suggested that perhaps something like "chat rooms" could be set up ahead of time to further open up the discussion before the October meetings. Members also encouraged one another to take what was discussed here back to their home institutions and to direct colleagues to UCAR's website on these discussions.

The Members thanked UCAR for the excellent 40th anniversary celebration.

Chairman Brown reminded the Members to mark their calendars for the 9-10 October 2001 meeting.


The meeting adjourned at 3:00 pm.

~ End of Minutes ~


Minutes approved by:


Ronald B. Smith


Minutes prepared by:


Susan Montgomery Hodge
and Susan J. Friberg