The next generation of climate services

Katharine L. Jacobs, Roger Brian Street

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Climate services have advanced significantly, evolving from primarily supply-side, top-down, one-size-fits-all approaches to a recognition of the need to support a unique and evolving community of decision makers and decision contexts. However, investments in climate services have not kept pace with the increasing need for evidence-based actions, and the need for “trusted relationships” between consumers and producers of those services may actually be slowing progress at a time when there is an increasing need to scale up from individual decisions to system-wide adaptation and resilience. In the meantime, recognition of the linkages between adaptation actions and the broader sustainable development agenda require an expansion of the concept of climate services from its historically narrow focus on the use of climate science for impact assessments and adaptation to that required to deliver a broader set of societal benefits based on increasing capacity to manage climate and other risks. A “next generation approach” is justified by the complexity and inter-relatedness of climate issues, the broad range of societal challenges, the scope of required actions, the rate at which adaptation and resilience challenges are emerging, and the range of data, tools and methods required. An approach based on transformational relationship-and capacity-building, which is capable of drawing on and informing science, service and practice is needed. Working at the science-to-service-to-practice interfaces to enable delivery of services aimed at informing action at scale will require new ways of collecting, analysing and using information and data about the effectiveness of climate actions in particular contexts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100199
JournalClimate Services
StatePublished - Dec 2020


  • Climate adaptation networks
  • Climate services
  • Network capability
  • Transformational capability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Atmospheric Science


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