Theoretical and Applied Climatology

, Volume 84, Issue 1–3, pp 179–190

Towards better scientific communication in urban climate

  • T. R. Oke

DOI: 10.1007/s00704-005-0153-0

Cite this article as:
Oke, T. Theor. Appl. Climatol. (2006) 84: 179. doi:10.1007/s00704-005-0153-0


Better communication both within the field of urban climate and between urban climate and cognate fields is necessary to both bind the subject internally and to more effectively move it into interdisciplinary interaction. A brief statement of the wide diversity of the field and its several modes of study and application leads to the view that it would be beneficial to consider adopting aids to increase dialogue. This includes standardization of symbols, terminology and indices, classification of phenomena, a protocol to generalize site description, adoption of principles of experimental design and the use of dimensional analysis and normalization to aid the transferability of results.

The focus of this paper is how to facilitate scientific interaction between participants within the field of urban climate, including both those who study its mechanisms and effects and those who apply such knowledge to the improvement of human settlements. As a by-product it may also assist communication between urban climatologists and workers in cognate fields as well as those we wish to entrain in the fields of policy development and environmental management. Section 1 explains the nature of the urban climate field and its practitioners, especially the diversity of scholarly disciplines, the range of topics studied and the motivations for doing so. Section 2 describes the sequence of investigative modes associated with achieving coherent understanding and intelligent application of urban climate. Section 3 attempts to outline some essential elements which might promote discourse between these modes such as the use of a common set of symbols and terminology and ways of expressing results so as to standardize variables and thereby assist comparison and transferability of results.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag/Wien 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. R. Oke
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of GeographyUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada

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