Skip to main content
Honorary doctorate recipient

Friederike Otto

Doctor of Science (DSc), 2024
For leading research, communication and justice work on humanity’s role in climate change

A physicist with a PhD in the philosophy of science, Friederike Otto joined the Grantham Institute for Climate Change and the Environment at Imperial College London in 2021. Prior to that she had spent 10 years as director of the Environmental Change Institute at the University of Oxford.

Otto is co-founder and lead of World Weather Attribution (WWA), an international effort to track and communicate the role human-induced climate change has on extreme weather events such as droughts, heat waves and storms. By providing irrefutable evidence quickly on the likelihood of such events occurring with and without climate change, Climate Change Attribution has helped shift the global conversation, influencing adaptation strategies and aiding sustainability litigation against polluters. 

For the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Sixth Assessment Report (AR6), Otto was a lead author of both The Physical Science Basis, published in 2021, and the 2023 Synthesis Report.

In 2020, Climate Change Attribution was named one of MIT Technology Review's top 10 breakthrough technologies. In 2021, Otto was recognized for co-founding WWA by TIME100, a list of the world’s most influential people, and by the journal Nature as one of the top 10 people who made a difference in science that year.

Otto published the popular science book Angry Weather: Heat Waves, Floods, Storms, and the New Science of Climate Change in 2020. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, The Financial Times, The Economist, Times of India, The Sun, The Wall Street Journal, The Telegraph, The Guardian, The Washington Post, Daily Mail, Die Zeit, Der Spiegel, BBC, and CNN.

Tuesday, June 4, 2024 - Faculty of Arts and Science (8pm ceremony)

Back to top

© Concordia University