Book Review: Prof. Jeffrey Sachs and Prof. Phoebe Koundouri reviewed “Aristotle’s Meteorologica, Meteorology then and Now” of Anastasios A. Tsonis and Christos Zerefos

Prof. Jeffrey Sachs, President of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and Prof. Phoebe Koundouri, Chair of SDSN Global Climate Hub and Co-Chair of SDSN Europe, reviewed the book “Aristotle’s Meteorology then and Now”, co-authored by Prof. Christos S. Zerefos, co-founder of SDSN Global Climate Hub.

This book was the source of inspiration for the Annual “Workshop on Ancient Wisdom for Modern Challenges” organized by the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UN SDSN), SDSN Europe, SDSN Greece, the Alliance of Excellence for Research and Innovation on Αephoria (AE4RIA), the Center for Sustainable Development  at Columbia University , the Sustainable Development Unit (SDU) at Athena Research Center, Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundation and Research Laboratory on Socio-Economic and Environmental Sustainability (ReSEES) at Athens University of Economics and Business (AUEB) and hosted by the Academy of Athens.

As a follow-up to the Workshop on Ancient Wisdom for Modern Challenges held in July 2022, where the SDSN Global Climate Hub was launched, Prof. Jeffrey Sachs, President of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and Prof. Phoebe Koundouri, Chair of SDSN Global Climate Hub and Co-Chair of SDSN Europe, reviewed “Aristotle’s Metrology then and Now” of Anastasios A. Tsonis and Christos Zerefos. The book has been co-authored by Prof. Christos S. Zerefos, General Secretary of the Academy of Athens and co-founder of SDSN Global Climate Hub.

“Aristotle’s Meteorologica, Meteorology then and Now” concentrates on the meteorological aspects of Aristotle’s work published as Meteorologica books A-D, and on how they compare now with our understanding of meteorology and climate change. In other words, how well did Aristotle fair when he tried to explain weather 2,300 years ago when there was only logic, eye observation, and past experience, with only primitive instrumentation and a few personalized measurements? While there are scientific issues behind Aristotle’s writings, this book is written for the non-specialist. The book uses simple examples to present its case, which will be easily followed by general readers. 

“This wonderful book on Aristotle’s meteorology by Anastasios A. Tsonis and Christos Zerefos is an opportunity to express my admiration not only for this sterling work but also for the great erudition and humanism of Christos Zerefos’s overall approach to science. Zerefos is a world-leading meteorologist and climatologist, who has made major scientific contributions to the study of solar-atmosphere interactions and dynamics of atmospheric ozone, among many topics. Yet he is also a polymath in the great tradition of the ancient Greek philosophers he so greatly appreciates, explicates, and emulates. Fittingly, he is the Secretary General of the Academy of Athens, Greece’s great scientific institution that is the heir of Plato’s famed Academy.”

Prof. Jeffrey Sachs, President of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN)

You may find the full review of Prof. Jeffrey Sachs here

“This insightful book, reviews part of Aristotle’s (the ancient Greek philosopher) work, belonging to diverse array of sciences such as astronomy, geometry, optics, geography, seismology, volcanology, chemistry and weather forecasting, the latter being the main aim of meteorology nowadays. The eminent scientists who author the book, Anastasios A. Tsonis and Christos Zerefos, focus on parts of the four books of Aristotle that are relevant to meteorological phenomena. They compare Aristotle’s views with the current knowledge of meteorology, not by simply stating the differences of the past and the present, but by highlighting the remarkable ability of Aristotle to make scientific inferences based mainly on non-instrumental observations and logic”.

Prof. Phoebe Koundouri, Chair of SDSN Global Climate Hub and Co-Chair of SDSN Europe

You may find the full review of Prof. Phoebe Koundouri here

Read the book “Aristotle’s Μετεωρολογικά, Meteorology then and now” authored by Anastasios A. Tsonis and Christos Zerefos at the following link

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