James D. Hays is a professor of Earth and environmental sciences at Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. Hays founded and led the CLIMAP project, which collected sea floor sediment data to study surface sea temperatures and paleoclimatological conditions 18,000 years ago.
Hays is probably best known as a co-author of the 1976 paper in Science, "Variations in the Earth's orbit: Pacemaker of the ice ages." Using ocean sediment cores, the Science paper verified the theories of Milutin Milanković that oscillations in climate can be correlated with Earth's orbital variations of eccentricity, axial tilt, and precession around the Sun (see Milankovitch cycles).
- Faculty bio page, Columbia University, accessed April 19, 2008
- Archaeology page on About.com website, accessed April 19, 2008
- Hays, J. D.; Imbrie, J.; Shackleton, N. J. (1976). "Variations in the Earth's Orbit: Pacemaker of the Ice Ages". Science 194 (4270): 1121–1132. doi:10.1126/science.194.4270.1121. PMID 17790893.