Kandel, Robert S(amuel) 1937-

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KANDEL, Robert S(amuel) 1937-

PERSONAL: Born December 27, 1937, in Brooklyn, NY; immigrated to France, 1974; son of Max and Netty N. (Kanner) Kandel; married Danielle M. C. A. Béguin, June 24, 1967; children: Maya Tamar, Tania Myriam, Arielle Tamina. Education: Harvard University, A.B., 1958; University of Paris, Docteur-ès-Sciences, 1967.

ADDRESSES: Home—Paris, France. Offıce—C.N.R.S. Lab Meteor Dynamique, Ecole Poly, 91128 Palaiseau Cedex, France.

CAREER: Climate and earth scientist. C.N.R.S. (National Scientific Research Agency of France) observatory, Meudon, France, research attaché, 1961-67, senior researcher, 1974-78; National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Goddard Institute of Space Studies, National Academy of Science research associate, 1967-69; Boston University, assistant professor of astronomy, 1969-74; C.N.R.S., Verrieres le Buisson, France, senior researcher aeronautical service, 1978-1985, Laboratory of Dynamic Meteorology, Palaiseau, France, 1985—, principal scanner for radiation budget scientist, 1986-1998, member of national committee on science research, 1987-1991, currently senior scientist. European Space Agency, Paris, science advisor, 1992—; Virginia Polytechnic Institute and Blacksburg State University, visiting professor, spring, 1998. Member, International Radiation Commission, 1988—; French National Commission of Geodesy and Geophysics; Committee for Space Research (COSPAR), 1984—.


Earth and Cosmos: A Book Relating the Environment of Man on Earth to the Environment of Earth in the Cosmos, Pergamon Press (New York, NY), 1980.

Our Changing Climate, McGraw-Hill (New York, NY), 1992.

Water from Heaven: The Story of Water from the BigBang to the Rise of Civilization and Beyond, Columbia University Press (New York, NY), 2003.

SIDELIGHTS: Scientist Robert S. Kandel has spent most of his career working with the National Scientific Research Agency of France (C.N.R.S.), but has also taken assignments in the United States, where he was born. Trained as an astrophysicist, he is now a climate researcher. His interest in the relationship between different fields of scientific enquiry has led him to write several books that explain advances in understanding the earth, its changing climate, and its relationship to the universe. Kandel has specialized in introducing complex phenomena and scientific theories to non-scientists. He has published works in English and in French.

Kandel based Earth and Cosmos: A Book Relating the Environment of Man on Earth to the Environment of Earth in the Cosmos on a course he taught at Boston University covering concepts from the disciplines of physics, astronomy, geology, meteorology, ecology, and economics. The book includes chapters on matter, radiation, astronomical rhythms, day and night, and the seasons. The author ends the book with his speculations about the future of humanity. A reviewer for Choice alerted readers that it was essentially a textbook and recommended it to those without a scientific background. In a review for Sky and Telescope, Doug McElroy described the book as "an attempt to delineate the Earth's position in the universe, and our position on Earth" as well as "a truly interdisciplinary effort." McElroy found that it "contains interesting facts and fairly good insights into, among other things, how scientists think and behave."

The focus of Our Changing Climate includes the concepts of global warming and the greenhouse effect, as well as the various political positions held by members of the international community. A review in Booklist by Denise Perry Donavin called Kandel's explanation of these worrying issues "elucidating."

In Water from Heaven: The Story of Water from the Big Bang to the Rise of Civilization and Beyond, the subject of water has Kandel explaining how the universe was created and how water in the forms of saltwater, freshwater, snow, and ice came to be on the planet, as well as considering possible problems with our access to water in the future. Booklist reviewer Donna Seaman called Kandel's book "a suitably fluid and mesmerizing narrative" in which he "assiduously catalogs every threat to our precious water supply."



Booklist, March 15, 1992, Denise Perry Donavin, review of Our Changing Climate, pp. 1323-1324; December 1, 2002, Donna Seaman, review of Water from Heaven: The Story of Water from the Big Bang to the Rise of Civilization and Beyond, p. 638.

Choice, December, 1980, review of Earth and Cosmos:A Book Relating the Environment of Man on Earth to the Environment of Earth in the Cosmos, p. 546.

Natural History, May, 2003, Sandra Postel, review of Water from Heaven, p. 60.

New Scientist, May 10, 2003, review of Water fromHeaven, p. 52.

Sky and Telescope, April, 1981, review of Earth andCosmos, p. 342; October, 1981, Doug McElroy, review of Earth and Cosmos, pp. 359-360.*