New Scientific Steering Committee Member

Currently a postdoctoral scholar with the North Carolina Institute for Climate Studies (NCICS) at NC State University in the United States, Dr. Rao’s research focuses on leveraging advanced statistical learning techniques to create high-quality climate data with multisource data, including satellite products, in situ observations, and model simulations. Dr. Rao’s broad research interests focus on advanced statistical models, satellite data development/validation, land-atmosphere interactions, and environmental impacts on public health. He is currently co-leading an effort on assessing land components of various CMIP6 models using satellite-based climate data records produced by NOAA and other agencies. Additionally, his research increasingly explores the feedbacks between natural systems and human activities using Earth observations.

Dr. Rao is a strong advocate for open science and community-driven approaches for training and development. At NCICS, he is also supporting the development of the newly established NOAA Center for Artificial Intelligence. Dr. Rao is collaborating with NOAA researchers to develop community training resources and define standards of AI-ready environmental science data. He is also actively engaged in national and international communities, including the Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP), the American Geophysical Union (AGU), where he is a member of the AGU Honors & Recognition Committee, and the Young Earth System Scientists community (YESS), where he is a member of the YESS Executive Committee. Dr. Rao plans to help facilitate capacity building events that increase the participation of early career researchers and enhance diversity in AIMES activities.