They received their PhD in Frankfurt/Main in Germany in 1997. The topic of their PhD was the development of a local atmospheric available potential energy concept, derived from the Exergy framework. After Research fellow periods at the GKSS in Germany, University of Reading and the Metoffice, UK, they joined the ICTP in 2001, where their main research areas are climate variability and its predictability. Special research topics include atmospheric and oceanic teleconnections, particularly El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and Atlantic Nino teleconnections with monsoons and extratropical regions at all time scales; the separation of forced and internal climate variability; Sahel and Arabian Peninsula rainfall variability and its relation to sea surface temperatures; and decadal modes of variability and air-sea interactions.
They are also editor-in-chief of the Nature Partner Journal npj Climate and Atmospheric Science, and faculty member of the Earth Science, Fluid-Dynamics, and Mathematics. Interactions and Methods (ESFM) Phd programme between University of Trieste, OGS and ICTP. They have co-organized more than 30 Scientific Activities at ICTP and elsewhere.
Since 2017 they are also head of the External Activities Unit at ICTP.