Roberto Fernandez Bilbao

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I am an early career climate scientist interested in understanding decadal climate variations, the mechanisms and external factors that drive them and how they all control the predictability of the climate system. My research activities have focused on two major and inter-related research lines, which I have carried out in parallel: (I) developing and improving the BSC decadal forecast system and (II) investigating the impacts of large volcanic eruptions on decadal prediction.


  • 2017: Ph.D. in Science: Atmosphere, Oceans and Climate, University of Reading (Reading, UK), Ph.D. dissertation title: Externally Forced Changes in Ocean Temperature and Sea Level. Supervison: Prof. Jonathan Gregory, Dr. Nathaelle Bouttes, Dr. Matthew Palmer and Dr. Peter Stott.
  • 2011: MSci in Meteorology and Oceanography, University of East Anglia (Norwich, UK).


On-going activities:

  • CONFESS (H2020)
  • Impetus4Change
  • WMO Annual-to-Decadal Climate Prediction


  • Hermanson, L., D. Smith, M. Seabrook, et al. (2022). WMO Global Annual to Decadal Climate Update: A prediction for 2021-2025. BAMS. Accepted.
  • Volpi D, Meccia VL, Guemas V, Ortega P, Bilbao R, Doblas-Reyes FJ, Amaral A, Echevarria P, Mahmood R and Corti S (2021) A Novel Initialization Technique for Decadal Climate Predictions. Front. Clim. 3: 681127. doi: 10.3389/fclim. 2021.681127
  • Bilbao, R., S. Wild, P. Ortega et al. (2021). Assessment of a full-field initialised decadal climate prediction system with the CMIP6 version of EC-Earth. Earth Systems Dynamics, doi:10.5194/esd-2020-66. Open Access
  • Carmo-Costa, T., R. Bilbao, P. Ortega, A. Teles-Machado, E. Dutra (2021). Trends, variability and predictive skill of the ocean heat content in North Atlantic: An analysis with the EC-Earth3 model. Climate Dynamics. Open Access
  • Smith, D.M., A.A. Scaife, R. Eade, et al. (2020). North Atlantic climate far more predictable than models imply. Nature, 583, 796-800, doi:10.1038/s41586-020-2525-0.
  • Hermanson, L., R. Bilbao, N. Dunstone, et al. (2020). Robust multiyear climate impacts of volcanic eruptions in decadal prediction systems. Journal of Geophysical Research Atmospheres, doi:10.1029/2019JD031739 Open Access
  • Merryfield, W., J. Baehr, L. Batté et al. (2020). Current and emerging developments in subseasonal to decadal prediction. BAMS 101, E869-896, doi:10.1175/BAMS-D-19-0037.1 Open Access
  • Bilbao, R., J.M. Gregory, N. Bouttes, M.D. Palmer, P. Stott (2019). Attribution of ocean temperature change to anthropogenic and natural forcings using the temporal, vertical and geographical structure. Climate Dynamics, doi:10.1007/s00382-019-04910-1. Open Access
  • Bojovic, D., Bilbao, R., Díaz, L. B., Donat, M., Ortega, P., Ruprich-Robert, Y., Solaraju-Murali, B., Terrado, M., Verfaillie, D., & Doblas-Reyes, F. (2019). The Biggest Unknowns Related to Decadal Prediction: What 50 Experts Think Are the 5 Major Knowledge Gaps, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 100(10), ES255-ES259.
  • Ménégoz, M., R. Bilbao, O. Bellprat, V. Guemas, FJ Doblas-Reyes (2018). Forecasting the climate response to volcanic eruptions: prediction skill related to stratospheric aerosol forcing. Environmental Research Letters, 13, 064022, doi:10.1088/1748-9326/aac4db. Open Access
  • Smith, D.M., A.A. Scaife, E. Hawkins et al., (2018). Predicted chance that global warming will temporarily exceed 1.5ºC. Geophysical Research Letters, 45, 11895-11903, doi:10.1029/2018GL079362. Open Access
  • Bilbao, R., J.M. Gregory, N. Bouttes (2015). Analysis of the regional pattern of sea level change due to ocean dynamics and density change for 1993–2099 in observations and CMIP5 AOGCMs. Climate Dynamics, doi:10.1007/s00382-015-2499-z. Open Access.