Home > AGW, Climate Change, Global Warming, Humor, Omniclimate > The Dismantling Of Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Wagner

The Dismantling Of Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Wagner

This being a blog of “unusual takes”, there won’t be much discussion about the self-immolation of a journal’s Editor for a paper that couldn’t be retracted. I also presume the average reader won’t need links to WUWT or Real-Science or the Bish’s blog to know about the aforementioned self-immolation.

The irony of History being impossible to exhaust, however, some public details about Prof Dr Wolfgang Wagner (“Wolfgang” in the rest of this post) do leave mouths open in bewilderment and amusement. For example clean-shaven Wolfgang declared in July 2010 that he was trying to get “a Lead role in the European Space Agency’s Climate Change initiative” in order to “see how soil moisture changes over a long time“. The declaration came during a Living Planet Symposium organized by ESA in Bergen, Norway, five days with “over 1,000 scientists” discussing the “latest findings”. Focus of the Symposium? Environment and climate. And among the members of the Scientific Committee of the Symposium? Wolfgang!

So he mustn’t have been your average climate-change-debate-unaware Editor, our Wolfgang, really.

A few months earlier in 2009 the same Wolfgang was also happily celebrating his being the “Editor-in-Chief of the new Open Access Journal “Remote Sensing”. Why? Oh, the irony!!!:

Remote Sensing journal is an Open Access journal and an online journal, with the Editorial Office located in Basel. It maintains a rapid editorial procedure and a rigorous peer-review system. Because it is an open access journal, papers published will receive very high publicity. The Remote Sensing Editorial team consists of trained scientists (Publisher: Dr. Shu-Kun Lin, PhD in Organic Chemistry from the ETH Zürich, and the Production Editor: Dr. Derek McPhee, California, USA)

Yes, that’s what he wrote: PAPERS PUBLISHED [ON “REMOTE SENSING”] WILL RECEIVE H-I-G-H P-U-B-L-I-C-I-T-Y. Well it sounds silly to protest against that same publicity in your resignation letter, doesn’t it Wolfgang?

Of course it doesn’t stop there. On 3 April 2011, Wolfgang was busy welcoming people to a workshop “WACMOS feedback to science community and water cycle roadmap in a changing climate“. Theme number 2 of 4? “Clouds“. Yeah, right…meanwhile in Feb 2010, the very Institute directed by Wolfgang since 2006 announced the establishment of the “International Soil Moisture Network“. With a key weak point, unfortunately:

The success of the International Soil Moisture Network will be based on the voluntary contributions of scientists and networks from around the world. With this announcement we call upon the scientific community to support this worthwhile initiative. We hope that many more networks are willing to contribute.

One has to wonder if there was any hint of reduction in voluntary contributions, or just a sudden lack of willingness to contribute, unless Wolfgang killed his Remote Sensing position? After all, the news appeared alongside the announcement of a new Chairman of the GEWEX Global Energy and Water Cycle Experiment Scientific Steering Group (some Kevin E. Trenberth).

Some “Kevin”, indeed..no wonder there’s been apologies. Alas, they weren’t enough to stop Remote Sensing from getting trivialized by the same Kevin, as noted by Pielke Sr.

Sic transit gloria Wolfgangi. And good luck with whomever will ever publish a singe paper with Wolfgang as editor.

ps yes, it is much easier to respect somebody when they don’t throw to the wolves a good chunk of their work, in this case, a whole new Journal.

  1. greg Holmes
    2011/09/07 at 14:39

    Wow, I do not know about Hillbilly’s, this is definely more Mafia “you hit us we hit you” only harder.
    What an absolute shower of thugs, they are a disgrace to mankind let alone Climate research.

  2. 2011/09/06 at 05:03

    Great post, Maurizio 🙂

    Les, I liked yours at WUWT, as well … But I am not fully convinced that there actually was an “apology” (let alone two of them!) If he was going to apologize, why would he not have done so in his resignation letter?!

    You may have heard me say it before (and I’m going to say it again!) … “Honesty is the best policy” is not a maxim that springs to mind when one thinks of The Team.

    And given the speed with which FOIA requests are responded to, it may be some time before we actually see (if ever) the correspondence between Kev and Wolf. In the interim, (as I had posted at BH) ….

    Considering Travesty Trenberth™’s known facility with “reconstructions” (he has a rather unfortunate habit of failing to notice emails he’s received while inventing stuff he hasn’t), I think it’s important to examine the “full context” of these alleged apologies from Wolf (and his publisher) to Kev. With the assistance of a very capable (but outsourced) E-mail grabber, I herewith produce the “source” of these alleged apologies:

    Kev ->Wolf [Aug 5, 2011]

    Dear Wolf,

    On July 29, I sent you the paper that demolishes that dreadful S&B2011 you published, and the name of 5 referees (Jones, Mann, Osborn, Schmidt & Dessler – who all know what to do with it). Why haven’t you published it yet?


    Wolf->Kev [Aug 6, 2011]

    Dear Kev,

    Sorry Kev, as you know we do have some procedures here at RS; I have assigned it to an editor who will be sending it out for peer review.


    Kev->Wolf [Aug 10, 2011]

    Dear Wolf,

    Could you give me an update on the status of the paper? I checked with Jones, Mann, Osborn, Schmidt and Dessler who tell me that they haven’t received a request to review it yet. Btw, how many downloads have there been of that TRAVESTY?


    Wolf->Kev [Aug 11, 2011]
    cc RS Publisher

    Dear Kev,

    We’re working on it; I’m sure you’ll understand that people do take vacations at this time of year. But we have asked the reviewers to fasttrack their responses. I’m cc’ing our publisher – as tracking downloads is his department, not mine.


    RS Publisher->Kev [Aug 12, 2011]
    cc Wolf

    Dear Prof. Trenberth,

    In response to your recent inquiry, as of today’s date, there have been 40,379 downloads of Spencer and Braswell 2011.

    RS Publisher

    Kev->RS Publisher [Aug 12, 2011]
    cc Wolf

    This is a TRAVESTY! You must pull the plug on these downloads, immediately.

    K.E.T. Distinguished Climate Scientist

    RS Publisher->Kev [Aug 13, 2011]
    cc Wolf

    Dear Prof. Trenberth,

    In reply to your request of Aug.12, as you know our policy and practice at RS is to make freely available to the public all publcations of RS. Consequently, I am very sorry, but we cannot comply with your request.

    Yours truly,
    RS Publisher

    RS Editorial Team->Kev [Aug. 20, 2011]
    cc Wolf

    Dear Prof. Trenberth,

    Attached please find the reviewer responses to your recent submission to RS. Would you kindly address their concerns and re-submit your paper.

    Yours truly,
    RS Editorial Team

    Kev->Wolf [Aug. 21, 2011]

    Dear Wolf,

    You need to explain the rules of the game to your “editorial” team – and please explain WTF is taking so long to stop those downloads of that TRAVESTY. What is the publication date of my paper?


    Wolf->Kev [Aug. 31, 2011]

    Dear Kev,

    Thanks for taking my phone call on the 21st and for explaining the rules of the game to me. I appreciate the time your friends took to draft the letter of resignation for me. You are quite correct, the future of the planet is at stake. The letter will be published in our next edition [Vol 3, Issue 9, Sept. 2] Feel free to use it whichever way you see fit.


    Kev->WSJ [Sep. 1, 2011]
    cc Abraham, Gleick

    Attached please find our OpEd for publication in your Sep. 2 edition.

    K.E.T. Distinguished Climate Scientist

    WSJ->Kev [Sep. 1, 2011]

    Dear Kev,

    Your OpEd refers to “letters of apology” from Wolf and RS Publisher. Pls. fwd copies of these for sidebar on your piece.


    Dear WSJ,

    Those letters are confidential and it would be highly unethical of me to fwd them to you without their permission. Time is of the essence. We shall publish elsewhere.

    K.E.T. Very Distinguished Climate Scientist

  3. 2011/09/06 at 03:37

    Sweet!!! Very nice connection! I’m just waiting for Dressler’s rebuttal!! A one month turn around….. this ought to be fun!

  4. Robert E. Phelan
    2011/09/05 at 19:42

    If I’d been a bit more diligent, Maurizio, I might have beaten you to this revelation, but excellent work. Les Johnson has just pulled this all together over at WUWT:


    This is not liiking good at all and I suspect an FOIA request to NCAR might be very revealing.

  5. Ron Cram
    2011/09/05 at 14:54

    Nice post! Thank you!

  6. Les Johnson
    2011/09/05 at 13:39

    Astounding. I wondered why the “apology” was directed to Trenberth.

    Click to access feb2010.pdf

    Why is it, whenever a person digs into the “consensus” climate network, that I am reminded of hillbillies and “marryin’ cousins”?

    Cue the banjos……

  1. 2011/10/20 at 22:39
  2. 2011/09/06 at 03:53
  3. 2011/09/06 at 00:22
  4. 2011/09/05 at 22:06
  5. 2011/09/05 at 21:50
  6. 2011/09/05 at 19:05

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