SCIPP Advisory Committee

Thomas Wilbanks

ORNL Corporate Fellow
MultiScale Energy - Environmental Systems Group - Environmental Sciences Division
Oak Ridge National Laboratory


Dr. Thomas Wilbanks has been a Corporate Research Fellow at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory since 1986 and leads the Laboratory's Global Change and Developing Country Programs. He conducts research on such issues as sustainable development, responses to environmental hazards and changes, and the role of geographical scale these regards. Co-edited recent books include Global Change and Local Places (2003), Geographical Dimensions of Terrorism (2003), and Bridging Scales and Knowledge Systems: Linking Global Science and Local Knowledge (2006). He played roles in the first U.S. National Assessment of Possible Consequences of Climate Variability and Change (1997-2000); the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Working Group II (Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability) Third Assessment Report; and aspects of the UNEP et al. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment related to issues of geographic scale and regional and local assessments. He served as Coordinating Lead Author for the IPCC's Fourth Assessment Report, Working Group II, Chapter 7: "Industry, Settlement, and Society" and as a Lead Author of the Working Group II Technical Summary and Summary for Policymakers He has led several "synthesis and assessment" reports for the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP), including summaries of current knowledge about impact and resilience issues for human settlements in the U.S. and for energy production and use in the U.S. Wilbanks is Chair of NRC's standing Committee on Human Dimensions of Global Change, and he serves on a number of other NRC committees and panels, including the NAS/NRC Committee on America's Climate Choices and serving as vice-chair of the adaptation panel for that study.