Recent Publications

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Developing reliable hourly electricity demand data through screening and imputation
In Scientific data, 2020

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Adaptation over Fatalism: Leveraging High-Impact Climate Disasters to Boost Societal Resilience
In Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 2020

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Robust Adaptation to Multiscale Climate Variability
In Earth’s Future, 2019

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Uncertainty analysis of urban sewer system using spatial simulation of radar rainfall fields: New York City case study
In Stochastic Environmental Research and Risk Assessment, 2018

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Measuring, modeling, and developing management strategies for climate and weather risks to critical infrastructure systems

What I do

As an applied scientist and engineer, I work to understand the risks and opportunities poised to our water and energy systems by climate/weather variability and climate change. I formulate and conduct analyses to discover novel and creative strategies with which to manage the risks and capitalize on the opportunities that result from our dependence on the weather and climate.

I combine my training in engineering, statistics, and climate science to approach a variety of problems, which are outlined in the Research Themes section.

Why I do what I do

I was first inspired to research issues related to natural disasters (particularly floods) after seeing the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina in the ninth ward in New Orleans as a high school student. As we enter the 2020s, risks from climate extremes are commanding increasing attention. I am encouraged by the increasing attention being paid to improving the estimation and prediction of extreme climate events by the public and private sector alike. I hope to be a part of this tide.

Research of future energy systems is an exciting field because our collective goal is clear – reducing the concentration of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere while maintaining reliable power and energy supply around the globe – but the best pathway to achieve this goal is very much up for debate. For example, there is a great need to develop management solutions to address the challenges that come with a future of more dependence on renewable resources like solar and wind power generation. My goal is to inform the development of these management solutions by providing relevant scientific insights.


David Farnham is a postdoctoral research fellow at Carnegie Science and the Department of Global Ecology at Stanford University working with Dr. Ken Caldeira. David is an engineer and applied scientist who investigates climate risk to critical water and energy infrastructure. David holds a PhD from the Department of Earth and Environmental Engineering at Columbia University where he studied under the advisement of Dr. Upmanu Lall.


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