Aspirations and common tensions

larger lessons from the third US national climate assessment

Susanne C. Moser, Jerry M. Melillo, Katharine Jacobs, Richard H. Moss, James l Buizer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The Third US National Climate Assessment (NCA3) was produced by experts in response to the US Global Change Research Act of 1990. Based on lessons learned from previous domestic and international assessments, the NCA3 was designed to speak to a broad public and inform the concerns of policy- and decision-makers at different scales. The NCA3 was also intended to be the first step in an ongoing assessment process that would build the nation’s capacity to respond to climate change. This concluding paper draws larger lessons from the insights gained throughout the assessment process that are of significance to future US and international assessment designers. We bring attention to process and products delivered, communication and engagement efforts, and how they contributed to the sustained assessment. Based on areas where expectations were exceeded or not fully met, we address four common tensions that all assessment designers must confront and manage: between (1) core assessment ingredients (knowledge base, institutional set-up, principled process, and the people involved), (2) national scope and subnational adaptive management information needs, (3) scope, complexity, and manageability, and (4) deliberate evaluation and ongoing learning approaches. Managing these tensions, amidst the social and political contexts in which assessments are conducted, is critical to ensure that assessments are feasible and productive, while its outcomes are perceived as credible, salient, and legitimate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-201
Number of pages15
JournalClimatic Change
Volume135
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016

Fingerprint

adaptive management
climate
global change
learning
communication
climate change
decision
evaluation
need
policy
product
public

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Atmospheric Science

Cite this

Aspirations and common tensions : larger lessons from the third US national climate assessment. / Moser, Susanne C.; Melillo, Jerry M.; Jacobs, Katharine; Moss, Richard H.; Buizer, James l.

In: Climatic Change, Vol. 135, No. 1, 01.03.2016, p. 187-201.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Moser, Susanne C. ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; Jacobs, Katharine ; Moss, Richard H. ; Buizer, James l. / Aspirations and common tensions : larger lessons from the third US national climate assessment. In: Climatic Change. 2016 ; Vol. 135, No. 1. pp. 187-201.
@article{392539951d964668a1e747509d945ba6,
title = "Aspirations and common tensions: larger lessons from the third US national climate assessment",
abstract = "The Third US National Climate Assessment (NCA3) was produced by experts in response to the US Global Change Research Act of 1990. Based on lessons learned from previous domestic and international assessments, the NCA3 was designed to speak to a broad public and inform the concerns of policy- and decision-makers at different scales. The NCA3 was also intended to be the first step in an ongoing assessment process that would build the nation’s capacity to respond to climate change. This concluding paper draws larger lessons from the insights gained throughout the assessment process that are of significance to future US and international assessment designers. We bring attention to process and products delivered, communication and engagement efforts, and how they contributed to the sustained assessment. Based on areas where expectations were exceeded or not fully met, we address four common tensions that all assessment designers must confront and manage: between (1) core assessment ingredients (knowledge base, institutional set-up, principled process, and the people involved), (2) national scope and subnational adaptive management information needs, (3) scope, complexity, and manageability, and (4) deliberate evaluation and ongoing learning approaches. Managing these tensions, amidst the social and political contexts in which assessments are conducted, is critical to ensure that assessments are feasible and productive, while its outcomes are perceived as credible, salient, and legitimate.",
author = "Moser, {Susanne C.} and Melillo, {Jerry M.} and Katharine Jacobs and Moss, {Richard H.} and Buizer, {James l}",
year = "2016",
month = "3",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1007/s10584-015-1530-z",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "135",
pages = "187--201",
journal = "Climatic Change",
issn = "0165-0009",
publisher = "Springer Netherlands",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Aspirations and common tensions

T2 - larger lessons from the third US national climate assessment

AU - Moser, Susanne C.

AU - Melillo, Jerry M.

AU - Jacobs, Katharine

AU - Moss, Richard H.

AU - Buizer, James l

PY - 2016/3/1

Y1 - 2016/3/1

N2 - The Third US National Climate Assessment (NCA3) was produced by experts in response to the US Global Change Research Act of 1990. Based on lessons learned from previous domestic and international assessments, the NCA3 was designed to speak to a broad public and inform the concerns of policy- and decision-makers at different scales. The NCA3 was also intended to be the first step in an ongoing assessment process that would build the nation’s capacity to respond to climate change. This concluding paper draws larger lessons from the insights gained throughout the assessment process that are of significance to future US and international assessment designers. We bring attention to process and products delivered, communication and engagement efforts, and how they contributed to the sustained assessment. Based on areas where expectations were exceeded or not fully met, we address four common tensions that all assessment designers must confront and manage: between (1) core assessment ingredients (knowledge base, institutional set-up, principled process, and the people involved), (2) national scope and subnational adaptive management information needs, (3) scope, complexity, and manageability, and (4) deliberate evaluation and ongoing learning approaches. Managing these tensions, amidst the social and political contexts in which assessments are conducted, is critical to ensure that assessments are feasible and productive, while its outcomes are perceived as credible, salient, and legitimate.

AB - The Third US National Climate Assessment (NCA3) was produced by experts in response to the US Global Change Research Act of 1990. Based on lessons learned from previous domestic and international assessments, the NCA3 was designed to speak to a broad public and inform the concerns of policy- and decision-makers at different scales. The NCA3 was also intended to be the first step in an ongoing assessment process that would build the nation’s capacity to respond to climate change. This concluding paper draws larger lessons from the insights gained throughout the assessment process that are of significance to future US and international assessment designers. We bring attention to process and products delivered, communication and engagement efforts, and how they contributed to the sustained assessment. Based on areas where expectations were exceeded or not fully met, we address four common tensions that all assessment designers must confront and manage: between (1) core assessment ingredients (knowledge base, institutional set-up, principled process, and the people involved), (2) national scope and subnational adaptive management information needs, (3) scope, complexity, and manageability, and (4) deliberate evaluation and ongoing learning approaches. Managing these tensions, amidst the social and political contexts in which assessments are conducted, is critical to ensure that assessments are feasible and productive, while its outcomes are perceived as credible, salient, and legitimate.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84959155737&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84959155737&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/s10584-015-1530-z

DO - 10.1007/s10584-015-1530-z

M3 - Article

VL - 135

SP - 187

EP - 201

JO - Climatic Change

JF - Climatic Change

SN - 0165-0009

IS - 1

ER -