IRC Awards 2004 - Gold Medal

Laudation on Richard Goody

This is the first time that IRC will award scientific prizes to a senior and a young scientist. In the case of the gold medal for the senior scientist, an International Committee found that selection amongst the proposed candidates was easy and the result was very clear. The awarder is Richard Goody from the Harvard University in USA. I will try to give a short laudation for Richard although I know that this is a difficult task.

Richard is an extremely productive scientist and he has been honoured already many times. Richard was born in Hertfordshire in England; he became an US citizen at 44 in 1965. Already in his Ph.D. work he dealt with radiation, namely “Radiative heat exchange in the lower stratosphere”. Richard published several books on physics and chemistry of atmospheres, in particular his standard textbook on Atmospheric Radiation. His publications cover a wide spectrum in Atmospheric Science, often related to the field of radiation but also connected with dynamics, clouds and instrumentation. The content of his papers consists of investigations of the Earth atmosphere between troposphere and thermosphere and of various planetary atmospheres. I believe all scientists in our field know the Goody model for the calibration of broadband radiative fluxes.

Richard was the director of several institutions where the employees are active in various fields, such as Dynamic Meteorology, Earth and Planetary Physics and Applied Physics. He has been honoured by membership of several Academies and by scientific prizes such as the Buchan Prize (Royal Meteor. Society), the Cleveland Abbe Award (Am. Met. Soc.) and the William Bowie Medal (Am. Geophys. Union).

Summarizing, Richard Goody is a wise man. We are proud that Richard is a member of the IRC. The only problem with this fact has been stated by the German author Hermann Hesse. I quote:

“Wisdom is not communicable. The wisdom which a wise man tries to communicate always sounds foolish. Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom.”

It is a pity that Richard Goody cannot be with us in Busan but he has an important appointment on a high level concerning climate research in USA. Therefore, Richard Goody has asked Prof. Kuo-Nan Liou to represent him.

Let me state the following:

The Gold Medal of the IRC is awarded to Richard Goody in recognition of his extraordinary contributions to Atmospheric Science Studies, in particular in the field of Atmospheric Radiation. We wish Richard continuing health, and trust that he will be able to contribute to research in Atmospheric Radiation in the coming years.

Herbert Fischer
President of the International Radiation Commission