Climate Services Clearinghouse
This month’s Research Highlight features the work of Genevieve Maricle, an Environmental Studies and Center graduate student. This column will describe her work in further detail, but in sum she seeks to create an interface with which to successfully transfer climate research to useful products for decision makers.
Knowledge of climate on spatial and temporal scales of relevance to decision makers has advanced dramatically in recent decades, and consequently has fostered the proliferation of a wide range of climate products and services geared toward the needs of decision makers. And yet recent research indicates that many farmers, water managers, highway administrators, and others do not currently consider potentially useful climate products in their planning decisions. Thus there is a gap between the supply of and demand for climate information.
But in this gap lies an opportunity to establish a formal and efficient mechanism to transfer research and products to decision makers. However, this opportunity cannot be realized without a comprehensive perspective of the scope of available climate services. And at present, no one has this comprehensive perspective.
Consequently Genevieve has developed the Climate Services Clearinghouse (CSC), which seeks to provide a single point-of-access to the entire scope of climate services. It is a robust, online, searchable database of all contemporary climate services from across public, private, and non-governmental sectors. Additionally, by soliciting information from on-going focus groups, the CSC will serve as an intermediary between climate researchers and decision makers in order to contribute to focusing climate research and operational transition activities on the needs of stakeholders.
Ultimately the CSC aims to provide both decision makers and climate researchers with the perspective necessary to facilitate
- the transfer of research into useful products
- the connections of user needs with the process of setting research priorities, and
- the evaluation of climate research already underway.
Once fully established, we hope to transfer the CSC into an operational setting at the National Weather Service Climate Services Division. In so doing, the CSC will become one of a suite of climate services tools both for those who produce climate services and those who use, or could use, climate services.
Version 1.0 of the Climate Services Clearinghouse is now online. Comments are welcome!Genevieve Maricle