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Graham McDowell

Postdoctoral Fellow

University of Zurich


I study climate change vulnerability and adaptation in high mountain socio-ecological systems, with a focus on lived experiences of changes in glacial hydrology. My work is problem-driven, insight-oriented, and solution-focused, an approach that requires engagement with communities at the frontlines of climate change, deep interdisciplinarity, and policy-relevant research products. I have led studies in the Nepal Himalaya, Peruvian Andes, Rocky Mountains, Greenland, and Baffin Island as well as numerous global-scale systematic reviews of vulnerability and adaptation. I was a Contributing Author for the IPCC SROCC ‘High Mountain Areas’ chapter, and am currently serving as a Contributing Author for the IPCC 6th assessment cycle. I hold degrees from the University of British Columbia (PhD), the University of Oxford (MSc), and McGill University (BA Hons).

Research interests

  • Social determinants of vulnerability and adaptation in high mountain regions
  • Experiences of climate change in the context of multiple stressors
  • Sustainability dimensions of responses to climate change
  • Knowledge integration and synthesis science