Associate Professor of Climate Science

Department of Environmental, Earth, and Atmospheric Sciences

University of Massachusetts Lowell


Google Scholar:

Twitter:  @MathewABarlow


Overall Research Focus

The influence of large-scale climate variability and change on local conditions of importance to society


Research Interests

ŠDrought dynamics and predictability, especially for the US, Central-Southwest Asia, and the Great Horn of Africa

ŠExtreme precipitation and temperature events

ŠThe relationship between global warming and modes of natural climate variability

ŠIntraseasonal variability and predictability (timescales from 1 week to 3 months)

ŠClimate change in the Northeast US

ŠThe hydroclimate of northern Eurasian and influences on the large-scale circulation

ŠMonsoon dynamics and regional influence

ŠThe influence of local and regional weather on pollution, pollen, health, and energy use


Federal Grants

2003-2008: PI, NSF AGS-0233576, Collaborative NSF Water Cycle Project, “Hydrology of Central and Southwest Asia:  Connections between regional atmospheric circulation and large-scale climate variability.”


2004-2005:  co-PI, NOAA Human Dimensions Project on precipitation in Central America.  (PI: C. Funk).


2004-2009: PI, NSF AGS-0437253, NSF Climate and Large-scale Dynamics Project, “Empirical and diagnostic analysis of the influence of the Madden-Julian Oscillation on the precipitation of Central and North America.” (co-PI: D. Salstein.)


2008-2011: PI, NOAA NA08OAR4310592, Climate Prediction Program for the Americas (CPPA) Project, “Remote and regional forcing of US drought.”


2008-2012: PI, NSF EAR-0811099, Collaborative NSF Hydrology Project, “A precipitation dipole in eastern North America:  Issues of space-time variability and physical mechanisms.”


2009-2013: PI, NSF OPP-0909272, Collaborative NSF Polar Programs Project, “Analysis and attribution of changes in Siberian hydroclimate and implications for the future.”


2013-2014: co-PI, NASA NNX13AN36G, “Frequency of Winter Weather Regimes in the US Northeast as an Indicator for National Climate Assessment.”  (PI:  Joshua Qian).


2016-2019: PI, NSF AGS-1623912, “Dynamics of Extreme Precipitation in the Northeast United States in Observations and Models,” (J. Qian, co-PI)


2017-2020: PI, NSF AGS-1657921, “Collaborative Research: Structure and Influence of Coherent Vertical Pulses of Wave Activity Flux in Observations and Models, from Daily to Seasonal Timescales,”


Current PhD Students

Laurie Agel, Extreme precipitation in the Northeast US

Rachel O’Donnell, Structure of storms that produce high surge


Past PhD Students

Andy Hoell, 2011, now at NOAA ESRL

Roop Saini, 2012, now post-doc at UCONN


Editorial Boards

2015-present        Editor for the Journal of Climate

2006-2015           Associate Editor for the Journal of Climate

2006-2015           Review Editor for Climate Research


Committees and Working Groups

2012-2014           co-chair of US CLIVAR Working Group on Large Scale Circulations Associated with Extremes

2011-2014           Phenomena, Observations, Synthesis (POS) Panel of US CLIVAR

2008                    Writing Team for AMS Water Resources Statement

2005-2009           AMS Applied Climatology Committee


Peer-Reviewed Publications (Students in Bold)

Barlow, M., S. Nigam, and E. H. Berbery, 1998: Evolution of the North American Monsoon System. J. Climate, 11, 2238-2257.


Nigam, S., M. Barlow, and E. H. Berbery, 1999:  Analysis links Pacific decadal variability to drought and streamflow in United States.  Eos, 80, pp. 621, 622, 625.


Barlow, M., S. Nigam, and E. H. Berbery, 2001: ENSO, Pacific decadal variability, and U.S. summertime precipitation, drought, and streamflow.  J. Climate, 14, 2105-2128.


Tourre, Y., B. Rajagopalan, Y. Kushnir, M. Barlow, and W. White, 2001: Patterns of Coherent Decadal and Interdecadal Climate Signals in the Pacific Basin during the 20th Century.  Geophys. Res. Lett., 28, 2069-2072.


Barlow, M., H. Cullen, and B. Lyon, 2002:  Drought in Central and Southwest Asia:  La Nina, the warm pool, and Indian Ocean precipitation.   J. Climate, 15, 697-700.


White, W., Y. Tourre, M. Barlow, and M. Dettinger, 2003:  A delayed action oscillator mechanism shared by biennial, interannual, and decadal signals in the Pacific basin.  J. Geophys. Res., 108, C3, 3070, doi:  10.1029/2002JC001490.


Tippett, M. K. , Barlow, M. and Lyon, B, 2003. Statistical correction of Central Southwest Asia winter precipitation simulations. Int. J. Climotol., 23,1421-1433.


Zhang, P., B. Anderson, M. Barlow, B. Tan, and R. Myneni, 2004:  Climate related vegetation characteristics derived from MODIS LAI and NDVI. J. Geophys. Res. 109(D20): doi: 10.1029/2004JD004720. issn: 0148-0227.


Barlow, M., and M. Tippett, 2004:  Predicting Central Asia river flows from regional precipitation and wind patterns during the preceding cold season.  IAHS Red Book, Regional Hydrologic Impacts of Climate Variability.


Cohen, J., and M. Barlow, 2005:  The NAO, the AO, and global warming:  how closely related?  J. Climate, 18, 4498–451                                          

Barlow, M., D. Salstein, and H. Cullen, 2005:  Hydrologic extremes in Central-Southwest Asia.  Eos, 86, 218.


Barlow, M., M. Wheeler, B. Lyon, and H. Cullen, 2005: Modulation of daily precipitation over Southwest Asia by the Madden-Julian Oscillation. Mon. Wea. Rev., 133, 3579-3594.


Barlow, M., and D. Salstein, 2006: Summertime influence of the Madden-Julian Oscillation on daily rainfall over Mexico and Central AmericaGeophys. Res. Lett., 33, L21708, doi:10.1029/2006GL027738.


Cohen, J., M. Barlow, P.J. Kushner, and K. Saito, 2007: Stratosphere–Troposphere Coupling and Links with Eurasian Land Surface Variability. J. Climate, 20, 5335–5343.


Barlow, M., A. Hoell, and F. Colby, 2007:  Examining the wintertime response to tropical convection over the eastern Indian Ocean by modifying atmospheric heating in a global atmospheric model.  Geophys. Res. Lett., 34, L19702, doi:10.1029/2007GL030043.


Funk, C., M. Dettinger, J. Michaelsen, J. Verdin, M. Brown, M. Barlow, and A. Hoell, 2008: Warming of the Indian Ocean threatens eastern and southern African food security but could be mitigated by agricultural development.  Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci., doi:10.1073/pnas.0708196105.


Barlow, M.A., and M.K. Tippett, 2008: Variability and Predictability of Central Asia River Flows: Antecedent Winter Precipitation and Large-Scale Teleconnections. J. Hydrometeor., 9, 1334–1349.


Cohen, J., M. Barlow, and K. Saito, 2009: Decadal Fluctuations in Planetary Wave Forcing  Modulate Global Warming in Late Boreal Winter. J. Climate, 22, 4418–4426.


Zhang, P., B. Anderson, M. Barlow, B. Tan, and R. Myneni, 2010:  Application of a satellite-based climate-variability impact index for crop yield forecasting in drought-stricken regions.  African J. Plant Sci., 4, 82-94.


Cohen, J., J. Foster, M. Barlow, K. Saito, and J. Jones, 2010: Winter 2009–2010: A case study of an extreme Arctic Oscillation event, Geophys. Res. Lett., 37, L17707, doi: 10.1029/2010GL044256.


Small, D., S. Islam, and M. Barlow, 2010:  The Impact of a Hemispheric Circulation Regime on Fall Precipitation over North America.  J. Hydrometeor., 11, 1182–1189.


Agel, L., V. Lopez, M. Barlow, and F. Colby, 2011:  Regional and Large-scale Influences on Summer Ozone Levels in Southern California.  J. Appl. Meteor. and  Clim., 50, 800–805.


Barlow, M., 2011:  Influence of hurricane-related activity on North American extreme precipitation.  Geophys. Res. Lett., 38, L04705, doi:10.1029/2010GL046258.  This paper was a Nature research highlight (Nature 470, 142).


Barlow, M., 2011:  The Madden-Julian Oscillation influence on Africa and West Asia.  In Intraseasonal Variability in the Coupled Tropical Ocean-Atmosphere System, W. Lau and D. Waliser, eds., Praxis, 2nd edition, in press.


Saini, R., M. Barlow, and A. Hoell, 2011:  Dynamics and Thermodynamics of the Regional Response to the Indian Monsoon Onset  J. Climate, 24, 5879-5886.


Cohen, J., J. Furtado, M. Barlow, V. Alexeev, J. Cherry, 2012:  Artic warming, increasing snow cover, and widespread boreal winter cooling.  Environ. Res. Lett., 7, 014007 (8pp).


Cohen, J., J. Furtado, M. Barlow, V. Alexeev, J. Cherry, 2012:  Asymmetric seasonal temperature trends.  Geophys. Res. Lett., 39, L04705.  This paper was an “Editor’s Choice” in the 9 March 2012 Science.


Hoell, A., M. Barlow, and R. Saini, 2012:  The leading pattern of intraseasonal and interannual Indian Ocean precipitation variability and its relationship with Asian circulation during the boreal cold season. J. Climate, 25, 7509–7526.


Saini, R., M. Barlow, and A. Hoell, 2013:  Is the North American Monsoon self- limiting?  Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 4442-4447.


Hoell, A., M. Barlow, and R. Saini, 2013:  Intraseasonal and Seasonal-to-Interannual Indian Ocean Convection and Hemispheric Teleconnections.  J. Climate, 26, 8850–8867.


Hoell, A., C. Funk, and M. Barlow, 2013:   The regional forcing of Northern hemisphere drought during recent warm tropical west Pacific Ocean La NiĖa events. Climate Dynamics, 1-23.


Christensen, J. H., and co-authors, including M. Barlow as a contributing author, 2013: Climate Phenomena and their Relevance for Future Regional Climate Change. In: Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Stocker, T. F., D. Qin, G.-K. Plattner, M. Tignor, S. K. Allen, J. Boschung, A. Nauels, Y.Xia, V. Bex, P. M. Midgley (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA, in press.


Hoell, A., M. Barlow, M. C. Wheeler, and C. Funk, 2014: Disruptions of El NiĖo–Southern Oscillation Teleconnections by the Madden–Julian Oscillation, Geophys. Res. Lett., 41, 998–1004, doi:10.1002/2013GL058648.


Cohen, J., J.A. Screen, J.C. Furtado, M. Barlow, D. Whittleston, D. Coumou, J. Francis, K. Dethloff, D. Entekhabi, J. Overland & J. Jones, 2014: Recent Arctic amplification and extreme mid-latitude weather, Nature Geosci., 7, 627-637.


Cohen, J., J. C. Furtado, J. Jones, M. Barlow, D. Whittleston, and D. Entekhabi, 2014: Linking Siberian Snow Cover to Precursors of Stratospheric Variability. J. Climate, 27, 5422–5432.


Hoell, A., C. Funk, and M. Barlow, 2014: The regional forcing of Northern hemisphere drought during recent warm tropical west Pacific Ocean La NiĖa events. Climate Dynamics 42, 3289-3311.


Hoell, A., C. Funk, and M. Barlow, 2014: La NiĖa diversity and Northwest Indian Ocean Rim teleconnections. Climate Dynamics, 43 (9-10), 2707-2724.


Hoell, A., Chris Funk, and Mathew Barlow, 2015: The Forcing of Southwestern Asia Teleconnections by Low-Frequency Sea Surface Temperature Variability during Boreal Winter. J. Climate, 28, 1511–1526.


Agel, L., M. Barlow, J. Qian, F. Colby, E. Douglas, T. Eichler, 2015: Climatology of Daily Precipitation and Extreme Precipitation Events in the Northeast US. J. Hydrometeor., 16,  2537-2557.


Grotjahn, R., R. Black, R. Leung, M. F. Wehner, M. Barlow, M. Bosilovich, A. Gershunov, W._J. Gutowski Jr., J. R. Gyakum, R. W. Katz, Y.-Y. Lee, Y.-K. Lim, Prabhat, 2016: North American Extreme Temperature Events and Related Large Scale Meteorological Patterns: A Review of Statistical Methods, Dynamics, Modeling, and Trends. Clim. Dyn., 46, 1151- 1184.


Roller, C., J.-H. Qian, L. Agel, M. Barlow, and V. Moron, 2016:  Winter weather regimes in the Northeast US and climate teleconnections.  J. Climate, 29, 2963-2980.


Schubert, S.D., Stewart, R.E., Wang, H., Barlow, M., Berbery, E.H., Cai, W., Hoerling, M.P., Kanikicharla, K.K., Koster, R.D., Lyon, B. and Mariotti, A., 2016. Global Meteorological Drought: A Synthesis of Current Understanding with a Focus on SST Drivers of Precipitation Deficits. J. Climate, 29, 3989-4019.


Barlow, M., B. Zaitchik, S. Paz, E. Black, J. Evans, and A. Hoell, 2016: A Review of Drought in the Middle East and Southwest Asia. J. Climate, 29, 8547–8574.


Hoell, A., Barlow, M., Cannon, F., and Xu, T., 2017: Oceanic Origins of Historical Southwest Asia Precipitation During the Boreal Cold Season. J. Climate, 30, 2885-2903.


Agel, L., Barlow, M., Feldstein, S. B., & Gutowski, W. J., 2017: Identification of large-scale meteorological patterns associated with extreme precipitation in the US Northeast. Clim Dyn., in press, doi:10.1007/s00382-017-3724-8.


Kretschmer, M., D. Coumou, L. Agel, M. Barlow, E. Tziperman, J. Cohen, 2017: More-persistent weak stratospheric polar vortex states linked to cold extremes.  Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., accepted.



Agrawala, S., M. Barlow, H. Cullen, and B. Lyon, 2001:  The drought and humanitarian crisis in Central and Southwest Asia:  A climate perspective.  IRI Special Report 01-11, 24pp.


Barlow, M., H. Cullen, B. Lyon, and O. Wilhelmi, 2006:  Drought disaster in Asia.  In "Natural Disaster Hotspots Case Studies," World Bank Disaster Risk Management Series No. 6.  Edited by J. Arnold, R. Chen, U. Deichmann, M. Dilley, A Lerner-Lam, R. Pullen, and Z. Trohanis.  


Grotjahn, R., M. Barlow, R. Black, T. Cavazos, W. Gutowski, J. Gyakum, R. Katz, A. Kumar, L-Y. Leung, R. Schumacher, M. Wehner, 2014: US CLIVAR workshop on analyses, dynamics, and modeling of large-scale meteorological patterns associated with extreme temperature and precipitation events. US CLIVAR Report 2014-2, US CLIVAR Project Office, Washington, DC, 42 pp.