Tuesday, February 5, 2013

{#4} D.LaFramboise The Delinquent Author - 20-somethings

{edited 2/7/2013}
{edited 11/25/2013}

This is chapter four from Donna LaFramboise's book 
The Delinquent Teenager: "Twenty-Something Graduate Students"

For an introduction explaining why I'm reviewing this piece of work, please click here.

{Courier font identifies LaFramboise's words
Laframboise, (2011-10-09). T D T W W M W T C E (Kindle Locations 195-201). Ivy Avenue Press. Kindle Edition. }
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4 - Twenty-Something Graduate Students   
So if malaria experts aren't writing the section on malaria in the Climate Bible and world-renowned sea level experts aren't writing the section on sea levels, 
First we should be clear that Donna misrepresents the circumstances regarding her "malaria expert" Reiter's affiliation with the IPCC.

Sent: 18 May 2007 03:42 
Subject: Reiter and IPCC - very curious 
"... I spoke with both Richard Moss (WG II, Head of Technical Support Unit Second and beginning of Third Assessments) and Neil Leary (WG II, Head of Technical Support Unit Third Assessment).
Richard and Neil are confident that nothing like what Reiter describes with regard to having "resigned", asking that his name be removed from the chapter author list, or threatening legal action ever happened on their watches at WG II. Moreover, Reiter's remark "this happened a great deal...specialists...don't agree and resign...there have been a number that I know of..." is completely without basis in fact. Neither Richard, Neil, nor I can recall a single instance in our experiences with SAR and TAR WG II of even one author having "resigned" or having asked that his name be removed from the author list..."
~ ~ ~ 
Extracts from Ofcom Complaint, by Category
Paul Reiter’s Resignation Allegations 
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

Second, Donna's Water Dowser sea level "expert" Mörner has a checkered history at best - with a substantial body of scientific evidence contradicting his sea level claims - evidence he chooses to ignore.  {and when necessary Mörner fabricates his "evidence"}

Mörner's other claim, that a new little ice age is imminent, underscores his disconnect from the geophysical situation, since he discount the simple physical reality of increased GHGs.

If this is all Donna can offer, her complains of IPCC exclusion can be considered groundless.
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But, Donna goes on to ask: who is writing IPCC reports?

That's easy enough to research: 
Working Group II AR5 Writing Teams

Before condemning the competence of the IPCC an investigative journalist would look further.  For example:  http://www.ipcc.ch/ipccreports/tar/wg2/index.php?idp=376 
reveals that this was a very competent team of authors.  But, first: 
One group consists of graduate students. Typically these are individuals in their twenties. Their experience of the world is neither broad nor deep. If they were merely performing administrative tasks that would be one thing. But the IPCC has long relied on their expert judgment.
I would expect an ethical investigative journalist would review the list of actual authors.  Here's a look.  Each of their names is linked to the results of a Google Scholar Search.
You can judge for yourself.

Donna where's this incompetence you claim?

IPCC Authors ~ 18 ~ Human Population Health 
Anthony J. McMichael, AUSTRALIA/UK

Principal Lead Authors:
M. Ando, Japan; 
Ando, M., I.N. Kobayashi, I. Kawahara, S. Asanuma, and C.K. Liang, 1998b: Impacts of heat stress on hyperthermic disorders and heat stroke. Global Environmental Research, 2, 111-120. 
~ ~ ~ 
R. Carcavallo, Argentina
Carcavallo, R.U., 1999: Climate factors related to Chagas disease transmission. Memorias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, 94(I), 367-369.
Carcavallo, R.U. and S.I. Curto de Casas, 1996: Some health impacts of global warming in South America: vector-borne diseases. Journal of Epidemiology, 6(4), S153-S157.
Carcavallo, R.U., I. Galindez, J. Jurberg, and H. Lent (eds.), 1999: Atlas of Chagas Disease Vectors in the Americas, Volume 3. Editora Fiocruz, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 733 pp.
Carcavallo, R.U., I. Galindez, J. Jurberg, and H. Lent (eds.), 1998: Atlas of Chagas Disease Vectors in the Americas, Volume 2. Editora Fiocruz, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 733 pp. 
~ ~ ~ 
P.R. Epstein, USA
Epstein, P.R., T.E. Ford, and R.R. Colwell, 1993: Marine ecosystems. Lancet, 342, 1216-1219.
Epstein, P.R., H.F. Diaz, S.A. Elias, G. Grabherr, N.E. Graham, W.J.M. Martens, E. Mosley-Thompson, and J. Susskind, 1997: Biological and physical signs of climate change: focus on mosquito-borne diseases. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 78, 409-417. 
~ ~ ~ 
A. Haines, UK;  
Haines, A. and D. Kammen, 2000: Sustainable energy and health. Global Change and Human Health, 1, 2-11.
~ ~ ~ 
G. Jendritzky, Germany;  
Jendritzky, G., K. Bucher, G. Laschewski, and H. Walther, 2000: Atmospheric heat exhange of the human being, bioclimate assessments, mortality and heat stress. International Journal of Circumpolar Health, 59, 222-227. 
~ ~ ~
L. Kalkstein, USA;  
Kalkstein, L.S. and J.S. Greene, 1997: An evaluation of climate/mortality relationships in large U.S. cities and the possible impacts of a climate change. Environmental Health Perspectives, 105, 84-93.
Kalkstein, L.S and G. Tan, 1995: Human health. In: As Climate Changes: International Impacts and Implications [Strzepek, K.M. and J.B. Smith (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA, pp.124-145. 
~ ~ ~ 
R. Odongo, Kenya; 
{May have nothing listed here, but a GoogleScholar search is impressive.}
~ ~ ~ 
J. Patz, USA;  
Patz, J.A., M.A. McGeehin, S.M. Bernard, K.L. Ebi, P.R Epstein, A. Grambsch, D.J. Gubler, and P. Reiter, 2000: The potential health impacts of climate variability and change for the United States: executive summary of the report of the health sector of the U.S. National Assessment. Environmental Health Perspectives, 108, 367-376.
Patz, J.A., W.J.M. Martens, D.A. Focks, and T.H. Jetten, 1998a: Dengue epidemic potential as projected by general circulation models of global climate change. Environmental Health Persprectives, 106, 147-152.
Patz, J.A., K. Strzepec, S. Lele, M. Hedden, S. Green, B. Noden, S.I. Hay, L. Kalkstein, and J.C. Beier, 1998b: Predicting key malaria transmission factors, biting and entomological inoculation rates, using modelled soil moisture. Tropical Medicine and International Health, 3, 818-827. 
~ ~ ~ 
W. Piver, USA  
Piver, W.T., M. Ando, F. Ye, and C.J. Portier, 1999: Temperature and air pollution as risk factors for heat stroke in Tokyo, July and August 1980-1995. Environmental Health Perspectives, 107, 911-916. 
~ ~ ~ 
Contributing Authors:
R. Anderson, UK;  
Anderson, R.M. and R.M. May, 1992: Infectious Diseases of Humans, Dynamics and Control. Oxford University Press, Oxford, United Kingdom, 757 pp. 
~ ~ ~ 
S. Curto de Casas, Argentina;  
Curto de Casas, S.I. and R.U. Carcavallo, 1984: Limites del triatomismo en la Argentina. I: Patagonia (The limits of triatominae in Argentina. I: Patagonia). Chagas, 1, 35-40.
Curto de Casas, S.I. and R.U. Carcavallo, 1995: Global distribution of American pathogenic complexes. In: The Health of Nations [Iyun, B.F., Y. Verhasselt, and J.A. Hellen (eds.)]. Averbury, Aldershot, United Kingdom, pp. 21-32. 
~ ~ ~ 
I. Galindez Giron, Venezuela;
{May have nothing listed here, but a GoogleScholar search is impressive.}  
~ ~ ~ 
S. Kovats, UK;   
Kovats, R.S. and Martens, P., 2000: Human health. In: Assessment of Potential Effects and Adaptations for Climate Change in Europe: The Europe ACACIA Project [Parry, M.L. (ed.)]. Jackson Environment Institute, University of East Anglia, Norwich, United Kingdom, pp. 227-242.
Kovats, R.S., M.J. Bouma, and A. Haines, 1999: El Niño and Health. WHO/ SDE/PHE/99.4, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland, 48 pp. 
~ ~ ~ 
W.J.M. Martens, The Netherlands;  
Martens, W.J.M., 1997: Climate change, thermal stress and mortality changes. Social Science and Medicine, 46, 331-344.
Martens, W.J.M., T.H. Jetten, J. Rotmans, and L.W. Niessen, 1995: Climate change and vector-borne diseases: a global modelling perspective. Global Environmental Change, 5, 195-209.
Martens, W.J.M., T.H. Jetten, and D.A. Focks, 1997: Sensitivity of malaria, schistosomiasis and dengue to global warming. Climate Change, 35, 145-156.
Martens, W.J.M., R.S. Kovats, S. Nijhof, P. deVries, M.J.T. Livermore, A.J. McMichael, D. Bradley, and J. Cox, 1999: Climate change and future populations at risk of malaria. Global Environmental Change, 9, S89-S107. 
~ ~ ~ 
D. Mills, USA;  
Mills, J.N. and J.E. Childs, 1998: Ecologic studies of rodent reservoirs: their relevance for human health. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 4, 529-537.
Mills, J.N., T.L. Yates, T.G. Ksiazek, C.J. Peter, and J.E. Childs, 1999: Long-term studies of hantavirus reservoir populations in the southwestern United States. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 5, 95-101. 
~ ~ ~
A.R. Moreno, Mexico; 
{May have nothing listed here, but a GoogleScholar search is impressive. } 
~ ~ ~
W. Reisen, USA;  
Reisen, W.K., 1995: Effect of temperature on Culex tarsalis (Diptera: Culicidae) from the Coachella and San Joaquin Valleys of California. Journal of Medical Entomology, 32(5), 636-45.
Reisen, W.K., R.P. Meyer, S.B. Presser, and J.L. Hardy, 1993: Effect of temperature on the transmission of Western Equine encephalomyelitis and St. Louis encephalitis viruses by Culex tarsalis (Diptera: Culicidae). Journal of Medical Entomology, 30, 151-160. 
~ ~ ~ 
R. Slooff, WHO; 
{May have nothing listed here, but a GoogleScholar search is impressive. }
~ ~ ~ 
D. Waltner-Toews, Canada;
{May have nothing listed here, but a GoogleScholar search is impressive. }
~ ~ ~ 
A. Woodward, New Zealand - 
Woodward, A., S. Hales, and P. Weinstein, 1998: Climate change and human health in the Asia Pacific region: who will be the most vulnerable? Climate Research, 11, 31-38.

There's more information: 

The point I'm trying to make is that a close look at the authors of the IPCC makes plain that they are a very competent and respectable lot!

Now Donna goes after various individuals because they were young and if it's one thing I'm learning about Donna: she's got a phobia against young scholars.

At this point it's probably impossible to figure out why some of the early team was hired. I imagine these unproven bright  young minds were on the radar screen of people who did the hiring.  The one thing we can definitely look at is the history of these young scholars since they were entrusted with IPCC responsibilities. 

If Donna supposition were true, we would see evidence for burnouts and scholastic disasters, yet a review of these names Donna picks on, reveals that they really do belong in the league of the best and the brightest.  With that in mind let's examine Donna list:
Richard Klein, now a Dutch geography professor, is a classic example. In 1992 Klein turned 23, completed a Masters degree, and worked as a Greenpeace campaigner. Two years later, at the tender age of 25, he found himself serving as an IPCC lead author. 
LaFramboise using "Greenpeace" to smear Klein with "activist" is dishonest, considering that she fails to tell us that Richard's affiliation with Greenpeace consisted of a 3 month office-based internship in 1990 - that's it.  To blow that into intimations of radicalism and untrustworthiness is an example of her ruthless disregard for basic facts.

As noted this was the very early days of the IPCC and many of these areas of study were new.  Here's what Richard Klein has to say about joining the IPCC team:

"I'm not sure if it's much of a story, but back in the 1990s the IPCC didn't have the standing and profile it has now, and procedures weren't as strict as they are now. That includes the procedures for nominating and selecting lead authors. What Sari Kovats, I and others have in common is that we were at the right place at the right time, and were able to do something with the opportunity we were offered.  
We certainly weren't the world's experts at the time, but we were working with people who were. In the case of Sari it was Tony McMichael, who led the chapter on human health in the IPCC Working Group II Second Assessment Report. In my case it was Pier Vellinga, who led what was then called a subgroup of Working Group II, covering four chapters in the SAR (coastal zones and small islands, oceans and large lakes, small islands, and financial services including insurance)."
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(The IPCC has three classes of writers. Coordinating lead authors are in charge of an entire chapter and are therefore the most senior in rank. Each chapter usually has two. Lead authors are expected to write a significant amount of text. Their numbers vary from a handful to several dozen. Contributing authors provide supplemental knowledge. They typically don't participate in the meetings attended by the other two kinds of authors, but are asked to write briefly about a narrow, specific topic. A chapter may have no contributing authors or as many as 20 of them.) 
Then comes 80 words basically crying about Richard Klein's young age.  But, does she give him credit for his many accomplishments?  
Take a look at http://www.sei-international.org/staff?staffid=122 and if you search out his CV, you'll be impressed.

Nor is he an isolated case. Laurens Bouwer is currently employed by an environmental studies institute at the VU University Amsterdam. In 1999-2000, he served as an IPCC lead author before earning his Masters in 2001.  
How can a young man without even a Masters degree become an IPCC lead author? Good question. Nor is it the only one. Bouwer's expertise is in climate change and water resources. Yet the chapter for which he first served as a lead author was titled Insurance and Other Financial Services.  
It turns out that, during part of 2000, Bouwer was a trainee at Munich Reinsurance Company. This means the IPCC chose as a lead author someone who a) was a trainee, b) lacked a Masters degree, and c) was still a full decade away from receiving his 2010 PhD. 

It so easy to slander and paint an alarmingly hostile one-sided portrayal when character assassination is one's only goal.  Here again - a look at Laurens M.Bouwer's actual accomplishments makes clear he is among the best and the brightest, something that was probably obvious to the right people at the right time.  That's how life works, Bouwer was given a chance to prove himself.  Why won't Donna share how well Bouwer has rewarded the trust placed in him:
Who else falls into this category? Step forward Lisa Alexander. As recently as 2008, this woman was a research assistant at Australia's Monash University. After earning her PhD in 2009, she was hired by another Aussie university - which noted in its announcement that she had already "played a key role" in both the 2001 and 2007 editions of the Climate Bible. (She was a contributing author the first time, and a lead author the second.) The IPCC selected its 2001 authors during 1999. This means its leadership decided that Alexander was a world-class expert 10 years before she, too, had earned her doctorate. 
Once again, Donna is driven by her imagination and single minded desire to slander these fine young minds people.

OK then, please step forward Lisa Alexander: 
Dr Lisa Alexander completed her Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Applied Mathematics at Queens University in Northern Ireland in 1995 and 1998 respectively.  
She was a research scientist for the Met Office Hadley Centre in the Climate Variability Group from 1998 to 2006, spending her last year on secondment at the Australian Bureau of Meteorology.   
She completed her PhD at Monash University in 2009, winning the Mollie Holman medal for best doctoral thesis.  
Since then she has been a senior researcher with the Climate Change Research Centre at UNSW.
~ ~ ~ 
Dr Alexander’s early career research has concentrated on understanding the variability and driving mechanisms of climate extremes. Her primary work is improving understanding of observed changes in these events using multiple research tools ranging from station observations to climate model output.  
Much of her work has been focused on the creation of high quality global datasets and their comparison with state of the art climate models. 
Of particular significance is Dr Alexander’s work on the production and assessment of global datasets of temperature and rainfall extremes under the auspices of the World Meteorological Organization’s (WMO) Expert Team on Climate Change Detection and Indices (ETCCDI).  
She has led regional capacity building and development workshops on behalf of the ETCCDI in Jamaica, Morocco, Turkey, Vietnam and Indonesia. Dr Alexander also chairs the WMO Commission for Climatology Expert Team on Climate Risk and Sector specific Indices.
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Sari Kovats, currently a lecturer at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, is an even more egregious example. She didn't earn her PhD until 2010. Yet back in 1994 - 16 years prior to that event and three years before her first academic paper was published - Kovats was one of only 21 people in the entire world selected to work on the first IPCC chapter that examined how climate change might affect human health. In total, Kovats has been an IPCC lead author twice and a contributing author once - all long before she'd completed her PhD.
Donna uses every rhetorically trick to cast aspersions - for instance she makes much fuss over Sari Kovats joining more chapter teams - but a reflection on the numbers reveals that it wasn't like she was in a dominating position or anything of the sort.  She happens to be a very competent scientist, with a proven record of accomplishments.  

Chapter 8: Human Health
Sari is one of 6 Lead Authors; under 2 Contributing Lead Authors  
Chapter 1: Assessment of Observed Changes and Responses in Natural and Managed Systems
Sari is one of 33 Contributing Authors; under 8 Lead authors; under 2 Contributing Lead Authors, 
Chapter 6: Coastal Systems and Low-lying Areas
Sari is one of 12 Contributing Authors; under 6 Lead Authors; under 2 Contributing Lead Authors.
Chapter 12: Europe
Sari is one of 12 Contributing Authors; under 7 Lead Authors; under 3 Contributing Lead Authors.
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And here is a little on Sari Kovats background and accomplishments
"Sari Kovats is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Social and Environmental Research in the Faculty of Public Health and Policy.  
She has been actively researching the effects of weather and climate on human health for more than 15 years and has published widely on this topic; including 60 peer-reviewed journal papers and more than 20 book chapters."

In other words Sari Kovats is a very smart and productive scientist... and here again, I'll bet her talents were noticed by "the old guard" and as we can see from her record, she certainly made good on the opportunity she was offered.
One of Kovats' health chapter colleagues was an American named Jonathan Patz. He earned a Masters degree in Public Health in 1992 and had his first academic paper published in late 1995. Yet in 1994 the IPCC judged his credentials so impressive he was appointed one of its lead authors. 
Once again Donna's passionate one-sided presentation sounds much more like a prosecutorial attack, than any good faith investigative journalism.  Take a look at Jonathan Patz's accomplishments:
Dr. Patz has written over 90 peer-­‐reviewed scientific papers, a textbook addressing the health effects of global environmental change, and most recently, a co-­‐edited five-­‐ volume Encyclopedia of Environmental Health (2011).  
He has been invited to brief both houses of Congress and has served on several scientific committees of the National Academy of Sciences.  
Dr. Patz served as Founding President of the International Association for Ecology and Health. 
In addition to directing the university-­wide Global Health Institute, 
Professor Patz has faculty appointments in the Nelson Institute, Center for Sustainability & the Global Environment (SAGE) and the Department of Population Health Sciences. 
He also directs the NSF-­‐sponsored Certificate on Humans and the Global Environment (CHANGE). 
Dr. Patz is double board-­certified, earning medical boards in both Occupational/Environmental Medicine and Family Medicine and received his medical degree from Case Western Reserve University (1987) and his Master of Public Health degree (1992) from Johns Hopkins University. 

This "youngster" was not some wet behind the ears hippy like Donna wants her audience to believe.  I find it easy to believe young Jonathan Patz's supervisors could see the burning talent in the guy.  

Donna LaFramboise you should be ashamed of these dishonest portrays you've painted here!
Given the involvement of both Kovats and Patz, Paul Reiter's description of the IPCC's 1995 health chapter as amateurish starts to make sense. Rather than recruiting real experts like Reiter the IPCC enlisted young, inexperienced, non-experts instead. 
Remember Paul Reiter is one of those outliers with his own ax to grind so his judgement carries it's fair share of prejudice.  But that doesn't mean his papers don't receive their fair consideration.
It has been doing so since the mid-1990s. Yet in 2011 newspapers still report that the IPCC is a collection of "the world's leading scientists."
The information and links that I've provided above make clear that Donna LaFramboise slanderous insinuations are nothing but an agenda driven propagandist's cartoons.  

It's quite sad that Laflamboise is committed to seeing nothing but evil conspiracies and enemies.  The thing is, these are, and were, serious professionals fully capable of doing the job.  And the product speaks for itself.  Notice how Donna does't find anything of substance to complain about.

Nor does Donna look at what the duties within their various assignments were!

It's not like everyone on a team does the ground breaking work, after all, a lot of IPCC work is simply organizing hundreds of studies and other reports that have been published in the previous years.  It requires huge amounts of simple drudge simple drudge work.  

Why does LaFramboise remain blind to such nuances.
Why the demonizing cartoons all the while ignoring actual substance.

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I just came across this story at MediaMatters.com and thought the following was worth sharing:

Fox Scraping The Barrel For Attacks On UN Climate Panel 
November 3, 2011 ››› JOCELYN FONG & SHAUNA THEEL 
Here are the facts Fox characteristically avoided: There were over 450 lead authors for the 2007 assessment report, plus 800 contributing authors and more than 2,500 reviewers. Fox identified only one graduate student who worked on the 2007 report. 1 out of over 1250 authors. . .  
... Fox also missed key facts for three of the four individuals -- all of whom certainly know more about climate change than the guys Fox presents as experts:
  • Fox News dismisses Jonathan Patz as a lead author because he had "earned his master's only two years earlier." However, Patz was already a doctor -- board certified in Occupational and Environmental Medicine -- when he earned his Masters of Public Health (see Patz's CV). He was one of the principal lead authors on a chapter on "Human Population Health."
  • Fox News claims that Richard Klein "was promoted to the panel's most senior role" - a coordinating lead author -- prior to completing his PhD. However, Klein was the coordinating lead author for a chapter of one of IPCC's special reports -- not one of the major assessment reports.
  • Fox News claims that Lisa Alexander was an "assistant author" in 2001 and a "lead author" in 2007. However, the 2001 report simply referenced studies that Alexander had co-authored and in 2007 Alexander was listed as a contributor but not a lead author, as Fox claimed. Alexander will be a lead author for a chapter in the 2013 assessment report -- she now has a Ph.D.
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