Zerefos Receives 2015 Yoram J. Kaufman Unselfish Cooperation in Research Award

Christos Zerefos will receive the 2015 Yoram J. Kaufman Unselfish Cooperation in Research Award at the 2015 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 14–18 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award recognizes “broad influence in atmospheric science through exceptional creativity, inspiration of younger scientists, mentoring, international collaborations, and unselfish cooperation in research.”


The AGU Atmospheric Sciences section is pleased to present the 2015 Yoram J. Kaufman Unselfish Cooperation in Research Award to Professor Christos Zerefos, Research Center for Atmospheric Physics and Climatology, Academy of Athens, for “his outstanding contributions in advancing the sciences of ozone, aerosols and ultraviolet radiation through international collaborations.”

Professor Zerefos is known internationally for his research in stratospheric ozone depletion and his studies demonstrating the interconnections between ozone, tropospheric aerosols, and ultraviolet radiation. Over the past several decades, he has been a leading force in developing and promoting ozone and ultraviolet radiation measurements in Greece and around the world.

Professor Zerefos has over 200 publications in peer-reviewed journals, about 25% of which are in AGU journals. These publications are only a small part of his contributions to the advancement of ozone science. Most important, throughout Professor Zerefos’s career, he has worked tirelessly to train and promote young scientists, including developing numerous research programs at traditionally nonresearch institutions. He has organized several large international ozone conferences, including the 1988 and 2004 Quadrennial Ozone Symposia and a symposium to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Montreal Protocol. In recognition of his leadership, he was elected as president of the International Ozone Commission in 2008.

Professor Zerefos’s record of research and service in ozone studies was recognized at the 10th anniversary of the Montreal Protocol with the award of the prestigious United Nations Environment Programme Global Ozone Award. In addition to his role as both scientist and mentor, Professor Zerefos has applied this scientific expertise in the service of the government of Greece and the European Union (EU). He served as an adviser at the ministerial level on ozone depletion and ultraviolet B threats and as the science-policy interface at the EU with similar responsibilities.

In the words of one of the supporting letters, “his knowledge and enthusiasm in promoting atmospheric science were an inspiration for all who came in contact with him, particularly the young generations of atmospheric scientists.”

We are extremely pleased to present the 2015 Kaufman Award to Professor Christos Zerefos.

—William K. M. Lau, University of Maryland, College Park, MD



It is a great honor for me, and I am humbled to receive the 2015 Yoram Kaufman Award from AGU. I was even more touched when one of several supporters of my candidacy congratulated me by saying that “I think that you really deserve this recognition on a great research carrier and service to our community. It is very rare that a non-American wins such an AGU prize, making it even more special.” Among other awards, I will particularly treasure this award because it will remind me of the decades of collaboration with both younger and elder colleagues in a period when man-made global changes have been on the front page in all international media. I would like to thank my colleagues who have offered me this honor, which also treasures the memory of an important scientist and colleague, who left us tragically in 2006, Yoram Kaufman. Not only tragedy but also the science of the atmosphere and the observations of our environment have been invented and thoroughly studied in Greece in the past 25 centuries. My base of activities has always been in this beautiful, but unfortunate in history, country. Working always with the international community on the complex processes in nature kept me and still keeps me involved in the fast-growing scientific cloud of global change. Today’s research can be successful only through team work, something that I have incorporated in all my life. This is why I feel great respect for all the excellent scientists with whom I have collaborated over the past 40 years. As Socrates said, “γηράσκω αεί διδασκόμενος” (“As I age, I always learn”).

—Christos S. Zerefos, Academy of Athens, Greece