Thanks for coming to see my website! I hope you find what you are looking for. I am a land surface modeler, ecophysiologist, climate scientist, ecologist and/or biogeochemist.

I currently work as:

Current Projects

I am involved, in leadership, coordination and advisory roles, with numerous research projects aligned around the improvement of the representation of the terrestrial biosphere in Earth System Models and the understanding of climate-biosphere feedback processes..

NGEE Tropics

The Next Generation Ecosystem Experiment in the Tropics is a 10 year $7M/year US Dept of Energy program to develop modeling and observations of tropical forest responses to climate.


The EMERALD project is a consortium of Norwegian researchers improving the representation of the terrestrial biosphere in the CLM5 and FATES models.


The Functionally Assembled Terrestrial Ecosystem Simulator (FATES) is an open-source project aimed at representing vegetation processes in Earth systems models.


The Community Terrestrial Systems model will unify the land surface representation of climate and weather forecasting.


The Community Land Model (v5) is our latest release of the most widely used land surface model in the world.

Curriculum Vitae


Positions Held

  • 2020- Researcher. Evolution /& Diversite Biologique. Univ. Paul Sabatier III. Toulouse, France.
  • 2019-2020- Researcher. CERFACS. Toulouse, France.
  • 2016-2019- Scientist II. National Center for Atmospheric Research. Boulder,Colorado, USA.
  • 2013-2016- Scientist I. National Center for Atmospheric Research. Boulder,Colorado, USA.
  • 2010-2013- Project Scientist I. National Center for Atmospheric Research. Boulder,Colorado, USA.
  • 2009-2010- Post Doctoral Scientist. Los Alamos National Lab, New Mexico. USA. PI. Nate McDowell.
  • 2005-2005- Post Doctoral Scientist. University of Sheffield, UK. PI F.Ian Woodward.
  • 2005-2005- Post Doctoral Scientist. University of Edinburgh, UK. PI Maurizio Mencuccinni.


My full publication list is at Google Scholar. (H-index=38. Total citations >7600)

As of 2019, and 2020, I am a Clarivate-Web of Science Highly Cited Researcher.

Some Selected Publications

  • This is our invited perspective for the AGU 100th anniversary. You can think of it as more or less a manifesto,
    Fisher, R.A. and Koven, C.D., 2020. Perspectives on the future of Land Surface Models and the challenges of representing complex terrestrial systems. Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems, 12(4), p.e2018MS001453. [PDF]

  • A paper I wrote with my other half on the inadequacies of climate models for fire attribution.
    Sanderson, Benjamin M; Fisher, Rosie A; ,A fiery wake-up call for climate science,Nature Climate Change,10,3,175-177,2020 [PDF]

  • This is the main publication for the CLM5 model, and represents a gigantic effort by the whole CLM community.
    The Community Land Model Version 5: Description of New Features, Benchmarking, and Impact of Forcing Uncertainty [PDF]

  • Our 2018 paper introduces the concept of Vegetation Demographic Models, and reviews the state of implementation of these models in ESMs for the first time.
    Fisher, R.A., Koven, C.D., Anderegg, W.R., Christoffersen, B.O., Dietze, M.C., Farrior, C.E., Holm, J.A., Hurtt, G.C., Knox, R.G., Lawrence, P.J. and Lichstein, J.W., Vegetation demographics in Earth System Models: A review of progress and priorities. [PDF]

The FATES model

FATES is the Functionally Assembled Terrestrial Ecosystem Simulator . It is:

Earlier Work

During my PhD I was involved in a drought experiment at Caxiuana in North Eastern Brazil, with my PhD advisers Mat Williams, Patrick Meir, and Yadvinder Malhi. The drought experiment was begun in November 2001 and is ongoing to the present day.

During that study, I collected a set of driving data and observations targeted at testing the assumptions of the SPA model under drought stressed conditions. These data included diurnal cycles of leaf water potential, stomatal conductance, stem water potential, sap flow and long term deep soil moisture and leaf area index. These data have proven useful for numerous studies validating new representation of water relations in tropical forests. ( Joetzjer et al. 2014; Christoffersen et al. 2016 ; Kenedy et al. 2019)

Work at Caxiuana is ongoing, led by Lucy Rowland and Patrick Meir. The early datasets are available on request if you are interested in hydrodynamic model validation.


Email: rosie a fisher @gmail dot com

Do not hesitate to get in touch if you have questions about the use of the FATES model, the CLM project, or are interested in collaboration.