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Matthew LarsenMatthew Larsen
Associate Director, Climate and Land Use Change, USGS
Hi-res | Climate and Land Use Change


Dr. Larsen is responsible for USGS climate-change research, adaptation, and mitigation programs as well as land-change science and land remote-sensing programs.

Dr. Larsen began his USGS career in 1977 as a physical science technician, assisting in a study of natural hazards to petroleum development in the Northern Bering Sea, Alaska. From 1990 to 2000, Dr. Larsen was the Luquillo, Puerto Rico, Water, Energy, and Biogeochemical Budgets (WEBB) project chief, having previously served as a project chief on a USGS study of landslide hazards in eastern Puerto Rico. From 2000 to 2003 he was the USGS Caribbean District Chief and supervised USGS water resources programs in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. During that period he also served as a coordinator and researcher on a USGS international mission that responded to the December 1999 landslide and flashflood disaster in Venezuela.

Before being named Associate Director for Climate and Land Use Change in 2010, he served as Associate Director for Water, from 2008 to 2010. Prior to this duty, he was the Chief Scientist for Hydrology and led the USGS National Research Program in hydrology.

The author of 80 scientific reports and journal articles, Dr. Larsen is currently the Chair of the U.S. National Committee for the UNESCO International Hydrological Programme and Co-chair of the Department of Interior Advisory Committee on Climate Change and Natural Resource Science.


Dr. Larsen earned a BS degree in geology from Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Ohio, and a Ph.D. in geography at the University of Colorado-Boulder.


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