Dr Chris Taylor


Approaching squall line in Mali (photo by Francoise Guichard)

An approaching squall line in Mali (photo by Francoise Guichard)

Dr Christopher Taylor


Centre for Ecology & Hydrology
Maclean Building
Benson Lane
Crowmarsh Gifford
OX10 8BB
Tel: +44 (0)1491 692354
E-mail: Dr Christopher Taylor

Research interests

I am interested in how properties of the land surface, such as soil moisture and vegetation cover, influence weather and climate. Whilst trained as a modeller, I have increasingly focused on using observations to identify how fluxes of moisture and sensible heat from the land affect the lower atmosphere and convective rainfall.

Current work

Researching the coupling between soil moisture, evaporation and precipitation during European summers as Principal Investigator on the NERC Changing Water Cycle SWELTER-21 project.

Using satellite data to identify where mesoscale land surface features (soil moisture, wetlands) affect precipitation, in studies in Africa (as part of the African Monsoon Multidisciplinary Analysis) and across the globe.

Leading efforts within the NERC National Centre for Earth Observation to use satellite data to constrain parameters within land surface models, notably the JULES model.

Brief CV

  • 1992 – present: Researching land-atmosphere feedbacks at CEH (formerly the Institute of Hydrology) Wallingford
  • 1992-1996: PhD, Department of Meteorology, University of Reading. I gained my PhD working on mesoscale modelling of land-atmosphere interactions as part of the HAPEX-Sahel experiment in West Africa.
  • 1990-91: MSc Atmospheric Science, University of East Anglia, Norwich
  • 1985-89: BSc Physics, University of Sussex, Brighton

Selected publications

A complete list of publications since 2006 is available from the NERC Open Research Archive

Taylor, Christopher M., de Jeu, Richard A. M., Guichard, Francoise, Harris, Phil P. and Dorigo, Wouter A. 2012. Afternoon rain more likely over drier soils. Nature 489. 423-426. 10.1038/nature11377

Spracklen, D.V., Arnold, S.R. and Taylor, C.M. 2012. Observations of increased tropical rainfall preceded by air passage over forests. Nature 489. 282-285. 10.1038/nature11390

Taylor, C.M., A. Gounou, F. Guichard, P.P. Harris, R.J. Ellis, F. Couvreux and M. De Kauwe 2011. Frequency of Sahelian storm initiation enhanced over mesoscale soil-moisture patterns, Nature Geosci. 4 (7), 430-433. [link]

Taylor, C.M. 2010. Feedbacks on convection from an African wetland, Geophys. Res. Lett. 37, L05406. [link]

Taylor, C.M., P.P. Harris and D.J. Parker, 2010. Impact of Soil Moisture on the Development of a Sahelian Mesoscale Convective System: A Case Study from the AMMA Special Observing Period, Quart J Roy Meteorol Soc 136, 456-470. [link]

Taylor, C.M. 2008. Intraseasonal land-atmosphere coupling in the West African monsoon, J. Climate 21 (24), 6636-6648. [link]

Taylor, C.M., D.J. Parker and P.P. Harris, 2007. An observational case study of mesoscale atmospheric circulations induced by soil moisture, Geophys. Res. Lett. 34 (doi:10.1029/2007GL030572), L15801. [link]

Taylor, C.M. and R.J. Ellis, 2006. Satellite detection of soil moisture impacts on convection at the mesoscale, Geophys. Res. Lett. 33 (doi:10.1029/2005GL025252), L03404. [link]

Taylor, C.M., R.J. Ellis, D.J. Parker, R.R. Burton and C.D. Thorncroft, 2003. Linking boundary-layer variability with convection: A case-study from JET2000, Quart J Roy Meteorol Soc 129 (592), 2233-2253. [link]

Taylor, C.M., E. F. Lambin, N. Stephenne, R. J. Harding and R. L. H. Essery, 2002. The influence of land use change on climate in the Sahel, J. Climate 15 (24), 3615-3629. [link]

Taylor, C.M., and T. Lebel, 1998. Observational evidence of persistent convective-scale rainfall patterns, Mon. Weather Rev. 126 (6), 1597-1607. [link]

Taylor, C.M., F. Saïd and T. Lebel, 1997. Interactions between the land surface and mesoscale rainfall variability during HAPEX-Sahel, Mon. Weather Rev. 125 (9), 2211-2227. [link]