Contact Information


Email: Opens window for sending emailholger.pohlmann@we dont want

Fon: +49-40-41173-152

Fax: +49-40-41173-298

Mobile: +49-1515-6866710

Room No. N209


Postal Address

Max Planck Institute for Meteorology

Bundesstr. 53

D-20146 Hamburg




Ocean in the Earth System


Research Group

Decadal Climate Prediction


Current Projects


Medium-term Climate Predictions (BMBF)


Decadal Climate Variability and Predictability (CLIVAR)


Quasi-Biennial Oscillation (SPARC)


Stratosphere und Climate (MPI-Met)

Multi-Model Decadal Forecast Exchange

Multi-Model Decadal Forecast Exchange (UK MetOffice)


Refereed publications


  • Brune, S., A. Düsterhus, H. Pohlmann, W. A. Müller, J. Baehr, 2017: Time dependency of the prediction skill for the North Atlantic subpolar gyre in initialized decadal hindcasts. Clim. Dyn.
  • Bunzel, F., W. A. Müller, T. Stacke, S. Hagemann, M. Dobrynin, J. Baehr, K. Fröhlich, H. Pohlmann, 2017: Improved seasonal prediction of European summer temperatures with new 5-layer soil-hydrology scheme. Geophys. Res. Lett.
  • Dobrynin, M., D. I.V. Domeisen, W. A. Müller, L. Bell, S. Brune, F. Bunzel, K. Fröhlich, H. Pohlmann, J. Baehr, 2016: Improved seasonal prediction of boreal winter through ensemble sub-sampling.
  • Kröger, J., H. Pohlmann, F. Sienz, J. Marotzke, J. Baehr, A. Köhl, K. Modali, I. Polkova, D. Stammer, F. Vamborg, W. A. Müller, 2017: Full-Field initialized decadal predictions with the MPI Earth System Model: An initial shock in the North Atlantic. Clim. Dyn.



  • Kadow, C., S. Illing, O. Kunst, H. W. Rust, H. Pohlmann, W. A. Müller and U. Cubasch, 2016: Evaluation of forecasts by accuracy and spread in the MiKlip decadal climate prediction system. Met. Zeitschrift, 25, 631-643. doi:10.1127/metz/2015/0639  (open access)
  • Kruschke, T., H. W. Rust, C. Kadow, W. A. Müller, H. Pohlmann, G. C. Leckebusch, U. Ulbrich, 2016: Probabilistic evaluation of decadal prediction skill regarding Northern Hemisphere winter storms. Met. Zeitschrift, 25, 721-738. doi:10.1127/metz/2015/0641  (open access)
  • Marotzke, J., W. A. Müller, F. S. E. Vamborg, P. Becker, U. Cubasch, H. Feldmann, F. Kaspar, C. Kottmeier, C. Marini, I. Polkova, K. Prömmel, H. W. Rust, D. Stammer, U. Ulbrich, C. Kadow, A. Köhl, J. Kröger, T. Kruschke, J. G. Pinto, H. Pohlmann, M. Reyers, M Schröder, F. Sienz, C. Timmreck, M. Ziese, 2016: MiKlip - a National Research Project on Decadal Climate Prediction. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 97, 2379-2394. doi:10.1175/BAMS-D-15-00184.1 (open access)
  • Mohino, E., N. Keenlyside., H. Pohlmann, 2016: Decadal prediction of Sahel rainfall: where does the skill (or lack thereof) come from? Clim. Dyn., 47, 3593-3612. doi:10.1007/s00382-016-3416-9
  • Müller, V., H. Pohlmann, A. Düsterhus, D. Matei, J. Marotzke, W. A. Müller, M. Zeller, J. Baehr, 2016: Hindcast skill for the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation at 26.5°N within two MPI-ESM decadal climate prediction systems. Clim. Dyn. doi:10.1007/s00382-016-3482-z
  • Pattatanús-Ábrahám, M., C. Kadow, S. Illing, W. A. Müller, H. Pohlmann, W. Steinbrecht, 2016: Bias and drift of the mid-range decadal climate prediction system (MiKlip) validated by European radiosonde data. Met Zeitschrift, 25, 709-720. doi:10.1127/metz/2016/0803 (open access)
  • Pohlmann H., J. Kröger, R. J. Greatbatch, W. Müller, 2016: Initialization shock in decadal hindcasts due to errors in wind stress over the tropical Pacific. Clim. Dyn. doi:10.1007/s00382-016-3486-8 (open access) highlighted here
  • Sienz, F., W. A. Müller, H. Pohlmann, 2016: Ensemble size impact on the decadal predictive skill assessment. Met. Zeitschrift, 25, 645-655. doi:10.1127/metz/2016/0670 (open access)
  • Timmreck, C., H. Pohlmann, S. Illing, C. Kadow, 2016: The impact of stratospheric volcanic aerosol on decadal-scale climate predictions. Geophys. Res. Lett., 43, 834-842. doi:10.1002/2015GL067431



  • Baehr, J., K. Fröhlich, M. Botzet, D. I. V. Domeisen, L. Kornblueh, D. Notz, R. Piontek, H. Pohlmann, S. Tietsche, W. A. Müller, 2015: The prediction of surface temperature in the new seasonal prediction system based on the MPI-ESM coupled climate model. Clim. Dyn., 442723-2735. doi:10.1007/s00382-014-2399-7
  • Bellucci, A., R. Haarsma, S. Gualdi, P. J. Athanasiadis, M. Caian, C. Cassou, E. Fernandez, A. Germe, J. Jungclaus, J. Kröger, D. Matei, W. Müller, H. Pohlmann, D. Salas y Melia, E. Sanchez, D. Smith, L. Terray, K. Wyser, S. Yang, 2015: An assessment of a multi-model ensemble of decadal climate predictions. Clim. Dyn., 44, 2787-2806. doi:10.1007/s00382-014-2164-y
  • Corti, S., T. Palmer, M. Balmaseda, A. Weisheimer, S. Drijfhout, N. Dunstone, W. Hazeleger, J. Kröger, H. Pohlmann, D. Smith, J.-S. von Storch, B. Wouters, 2015: Impact of initial conditions versus external forcing in decadal climate predictions: A sensitivity experiment. J. Climate, 28, 4454-4470. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-14-00671.1  (open access)



  • Meehl, G. A., L. Goddard, G. Boer, R. Burgman, G. Branstator, C. Cassou, S. Corti, G. Danabasoglu, F. Doblas-Reyes, E. Hawkins, A. Karspeck, M. Kimoto, A. Kumar, D. Matei, J. Mignot, R. Msadek, A. Navarra, H. Pohlmann, M. Rienecker, T. Rosati, E. Schneider, D. Smith, R. Sutton, H. Teng, G. J. van Oldenborgh, G. Vecchi, S. Yeager, 2014: Decadal climate prediction: An update from the trenches. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 95, 243-267. doi:10.1175/BAMS-D-12-00241.1
  • Müller, W. A., H. Pohlmann, F. Sienz, D. Smith, 2014: Decadal climate predictions for the period 1901-2010 with a coupled climate model. Geophys. Res. Lett., 41, 2100-2107. doi:10.1002/2014GL059259
  • Scaife, A. A., M. Athanassiadou, M. Andrews, A. Arribas, M. Baldwin, N. Dunstone, J. Knight, C. MacLachlan, E. Manzini, W. A. Müller, H. Pohlmann, D. Smith., T. Stockdale, A. Williams, 2014: Predictability of the quasi-biennial oscillation and its northern winter teleconnection on seasonal to decadal timescales. Geophys. Res. Lett., 41, 1752-1758. doi:10.1002/2013GL059160  (open access) highlighted here
  • Smith, D. M., N. J. Dunstone, R. Eade, D. Fereday, L. Hermanson, J. M. Murphy, H. Pohlmann, N. Robinson, A. A. Scaife, 2014: Comments on “Multi-year Predictions of North Atlantic Hurricane Frequency: Promise and limitations.” J. Climate, 27, 487-489. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-13-00220.1



  • Hazeleger, W., B. Wouters, G. J. van Oldenborgh, S. Corti, T. Palmer, D. Smith, N. Dunstone, J. Kröger, H. Pohlmann, J.-S. von Storch, 2013: Predicting multi-year North Atlantic Ocean variability. J. Geophys. Res. Oceans, 118, 1087-1098. doi:10.1002/jgrc.20117
  • Pohlmann, H., W. A. Müller, K. Kulkarni, M. Kameswarrao, D. Matei, F. S. E. Vamborg, C. Kadow, S. Illing, J. Marotzke, 2013: Improved forecast skill in the tropics in the new MiKlip decadal climate predictions. Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 5798-5802. doi:10.1002/2013GL058051  (open access)
  • Pohlmann, H., D. M. Smith, M. A. Balmaseda, N. S. Keenlyside, S. Masina, D. Matei, W. A. Müller, P. Rogel, 2013: Predictability of the mid-latitude Atlantic meridional overturning circulation in a multi-model system. Clim. Dyn., 41, 775-785. doi:10.1007/s00382-013-1663-6
  • Smith, D. M., R. Eade, H. Pohlmann, 2013: A comparison of anomaly and full field initialization for seasonal to decadal climate prediction. Clim Dyn., 41, 3325-3338. doi:10.1007/s00382-013-1683-2
  • Smith, D. M., A. A. Scaife, G. J. Boer, M. Caian, F. J. Doblas-Reyes, V. Guemas, E. Hawkins, W. Hazeleger, L. Hermanson, C. K. Ho, M. Ishii, V. Kharin, M. Kimoto, B. Kirtman, J. Lean, D. Matei, W. A. Müller, H. Pohlmann, A. Rosati, B. Wouters, K. Wyser, 2013: Real-time multi-model decadal predictions. Clim. Dyn, 41, 2875-2888. doi:10.1007/s00382-1600-0



  • Matei, D., H. Pohlmann, J. Jungclaus, W. Müller, H. Haak, J. Marotzke, 2012: Two tales of initializing decadal climate prediction experiments with the ECHAM5/MPI-OM model. J. Climate, 25, 8502-8523. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-11-00633.1
  • Müller, W. A., J. Baehr, H. Haak, J. H. Jungclaus, J. Kröger, D. Matei, D. Notz, H. Pohlmann,  J.-S. von Storch, J. Marotzke, 2012: Forecast skill of multi-year seasonal means in the decadal prediction system of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology. Geophys. Res. Lett., 39, L22707. doi:10.1029/2012GL053326



  • Hawkins, E., R. S. Smith, L. C. Allison, J. M. Gregory, T. J. Woolings, H. Pohlmann, B. de Cuevas, 2011: Bistability of the Atlantic overturning circulation in a global climate model and links to ocean freshwater transport. Geophys. Res. Lett., 38, L10605. doi:10.1029/2011GL047208
  • Hawkins, E., R. S. Smith, L. C. Allison, J. M. Gregory, T. J. Woolings, H. Pohlmann, B. de Cuevas, 2011: Correction to "Bistability of the Atlantic overturning circulation in a global climate model and links to ocean freshwater transport". Geophys. Res. Lett., 38, L16699. doi:10.1029/2011GL048997



  • Hurrell, J. W., T. Delworth, G. Danabasoglu, H. Drange, K. Drinkwater, S. Griffies, N. Holbrook, B. Kirtman, N. Keenlyside, M. Latif, J. Marotzke, J. Murphy, G. A. Meehl, T. Palmer, H. Pohlmann, T. Rosati, R. Seager, D. Smith, R. Sutton, A. Timmermann, K. E. Trenberth, J. Tribbia, M. Visbeck, 2010: "Decadal Climate Prediction: Opportunities And Challenges" in Proceedings of OceanObs’09: Sustained Ocean Observations and Information for Society (Vol. 2), Venice, Italy, 21-25 September 2009, J. Hall, D. E. Harrison, and D. Stammer, Eds., ESA Publication WPP-306. doi:10.5270/OceanObs09.cwp.45
  • Matei, D., H. Pohlmann, W. Müller, H. Haak, J. Jungclaus, J. Marotzke, 2010: "Quantifying the role of ocean initial conditions in decadal prediction" in Proceedings of OceanObs’09: Sustained Ocean Observations and Information for Society (Annex), Venice, Italy, 21-25 September 2009, J. Hall, D. E. Harrison, and D. Stammer, Eds., ESA Publication WPP-306. doi:10.5270/OceanObs09
  • Smith, D. M., R. Eade, N. J. Dunstone, D. Fereday, J. M. Murphy, H. Pohlmann, A. Scaife, 2010: Skilful multi-year predictions of Atlantic hurricane frequency. Nat. Geosci., 3, 846-849. doi:10.1038/ngeo1004



  • Pohlmann, H., J. H. Jungclaus, A. Köhl, D. Stammer, J. Marotzke, 2009: Initializing decadal climate predictions with the GECCO oceanic synthesis: Effects on the North Atlantic. J. Climate, 22, 3926-3938. doi:10.1175/2009JCLI2535.1



  • Latif, M., C. W. Böning, J. Willebrand, A. Biastoch, F. Alvarez-Garcia, N. Keenlyside, H. Pohlmann, 2007: Decadal to multidecadal variability of the Atlantic MOC: mechanisms and predictability. AGU Geophysical Monograph 173 "Ocean Circulation: Mechanisms and Impacts - Past and Future Changes of Meridional Overturning", A. Schmittner, J. Chiang, and S. Hemming (Eds.), American Geophysical Union, Washington DC, 149-166. ISBN: 978-0-87590-438-2



  • Collins, M., M. Botzet, A. Carril, H. Drange, A. Jouzeau, M. Latif, O. H. Otteraa, H. Pohlmann, A. Sorteberg, R. Sutton, L. Terray, 2006: Interannual to decadal climate predictability: A multimodel-ensemble study. J. Climate, 19, 1195-1203. doi:10.1175/JCLI3654.1
  • Latif, M., M. Collins, H. Pohlmann, N. Keenlyside, 2006: A review of predictability studies of Atlantic sector climate on decadal time scales. J. Climate, 19, 5971-5987. doi:10.1175/JCLI3945.1
  • Latif, M., H. Pohlmann, W. Park, 2006: Predictability of the North Atlantic thermohaline circulation. In "Predictability of Weather and Climate", T. N. Palmer and R. Hagedorn (Eds.), Cambridge University Press, 343-364
  • Pohlmann, H., R. J. Greatbatch, 2006: Discontinuities in the late 1960's in different atmospheric data products. Geophys. Res. Lett., 33, L22803. doi:10.1029/2006GL027644
  • Pohlmann, H., F. Sienz, M. Latif, 2006: Influence of the multidecadal Atlantic meridional overturning circulation variability on European climate. J. Climate, 19, 6062-6067. doi:10.1175/JCLI3941.1



  • Pohlmann, H., M. Latif, 2005: Atlantic versus Indo-Pacific influence on Atlantic-European climate. Geophys. Res. Lett., 32, L05707. doi:10.1029/2004GL021316



  • Pohlmann, H., M. Botzet, M. Latif, A. Roesch, M. Wild, P. Tschuck, 2004: Estimating the decadal predictability of a coupled AOGCM. J. Climate, 17, 4463-4472. doi:10.1175/3209.1
  • Rodwell, M. J., M. Drévillon, C. Frankignoul, J. W. Hurrell, H. Pohlmann, M. Stendel, R. T. Sutton, 2004: North Atlantic forcing of climate and its uncertainty from a multi-model experiment. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Society, 130, 2013-2032. doi:10.1256/qj.03.207


Other publications


  • Böttinger, M., H. Pohlmann, N. Röber, K. Meier-Fleischer, D. Spickermann, 2015: Visualization of 2D uncertainty in decadal climate prediction. In "Workshop on Visualisation in Environmental Sciences (EnvirVis)", A. Middel, K. Rink and G. H. Weber (Eds.), The Eurographics Association. doi:10.2312/envirvis.20151083



  • Bellucci, A., R. Haarsma, S. Gualdi, P. Athanasiadis, M. Caian, C. Cassou, A. Germe, J. Jungclaus, J. Kröger, D. Matei, W. Müller, H. Pohlmann, D. Salas y Melia, E. Sanchez, D. Smith, L. Terray, K. Wyser, 2012: An assessment of a multi-model ensemble of decadal climate predictions performed within the framework of the COMBINE project. COMBINE Technical Report No. 2


  • Doblas-Reyes, F. J., G. J. van Oldenborgh, J. Garcia-Serrano, H. Pohlmann, A. A. Scaife, D. Smith, 2011: CMIP5 near-term climate predictions. CLIVAR Exchanges, 56, 8-11



  • Brander, K. M., U. Daewel, K. F. Drinkwater, G. Engelhard, A. Flin, M. Lindgren, B. R. MacKenzie, I. Mantzouni, P. Munk, G. Ottersen, H. Pohlmann, B. Rothschild, C. Schrum, J. E. Stiansen, S. Sundby, K. U. Wieland, 2010: Cod and future climate change. ICES Cooperative Research Report, 305, 88pp. ISBN: 978-87-7482-084-0
  • Murphy, J., V. Kattsov, N. Keenlyside, M. Kimoto, G. Meehl, V. Mehta, H. Pohlmann, A. Scaife, D. Smith, 2010: Towards Prediction of Decadal Climate Variability and Change. Procedia Environmental Sciences, 1, 287-304, ISSN 1878-0296. doi:10.1016/j.proenv.2010.09.018



  • Latif, M., M. Collins, R. J. Stouffer, H. Pohlmann, N. Keenlyside, 2004: The physical basis for prediction of Atlantic sector climate on decadal time scales. CLIVAR Exchanges, 31, 6-8
  • Pohlmann, H., N. Keenlyside, 2004: Review: Decadal-multidecadal climate predictability. Students Contest of the CRCES-IPRC Workshop on Decadal Climate Variability, Hawaii, USA



  • Collins, M., A. Carril, H. Drange, H. Pohlmann, R. Sutton, L. Terray, 2003: North Atlantic decadal predictability. CLIVAR Exchanges, 28, 6-7



  • Latif, M., E. Roeckner, M. Botzet, M. Esch, H. Haak, S. Hagemann, J. Jungclaus, S. Legutke, H. Pohlmann, S. Marsland, U. Mikolajewicz, 2002: Predictability of the North Atlantic thermohaline circulation. Proceedings of the ECMWF Seminar on Predictability of Weather and Climate, 265-273



  • Pohlmann, H., M. Harder, T. Martin, P. Lemke, 2000: Comparison of two sea ice simulations forced with ECMWF and NCEP/NCAR re-analyses data. Proceedings of the Second WCRP International Conference on Reanalyses, 229-232, WCRP-109, WMO/TD-NO 985


Curriculum vitae


Research Experience

since 2011Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Hamburg, Germany
2007 - 2011Met Office Hadley Centre, Exeter, UK
2006 - 2007Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Hamburg, Germany
2005 - 2006Institute of Oceanography, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada                       



2000 - 2005Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Hamburg, Germany
2005Ph.D. in Natural Sciences, Hamburg University, Germany                                 



1993 - 2000Meteorology, Kiel University, Germany
2000Diploma in Meteorology, Kiel University, Germany                                           


Past Projects

SPECSSeasonal to Decadal Climate Prediction for the Improvement of European Climate Services (EU FP7)
ENSEMBLESEnsembles-Based Predictions of Climate Changes and their Impact (EU FP7)
COMBINEComprehensive Modelling of the Earth System for Better Climate Prediction and Projection (EU FP7)
THORThermohaline Overturning Circulation at Risk? (EU FP7)
NordatlantikDer Nordatlantik als Teil des Erdsystems (BMBF)
Canadian CLIVARCanadian CLIVAR Research Network
PREDICATEMechanism and Predictability of Decadal Fluctuations in Atlantic-European Climate (EU)
DEKLIMDeutsches Klimaforschungsprogramm (BMBF)
SEALIONSea Ice in the Antarctic linked with Ocean-Atmosphere Forcing (EU)