Dr. James Williams studies ice and oceans on Earth and other celestial bodies. Some specific interests include: the physics and numerical methods used for simulating sea ice in global climate models, the predictability of the Arctic climate system in a changing world, and the causes and implications of amplified warming in the Arctic. This research is done through the use of in situ and satellite observations as well as numerical simulations of various complexity. His work includes the development of the sea-ice dynamics component of the NASA-GISS climate model (modelE). James commonly participates in and supports field campaigns in the high Arctic, collecting oceanographic and cryospheric data in order to further our understanding of the current and past state of the climate system. He co-coordinates the NASA-GISS Cryosphere research group to facilitate collaboration within the lab.
James earned a Ph.D from McGill University in 2017. His doctoral thesis was entitled: "Improving predictions of Arctic sea-ice conditions using satellite observations and numerical models".