Climatic Change

, Volume 135, Issue 1, pp 69–83 | Cite as

Innovations in information management and access for assessments

  • Anne M. WapleEmail author
  • Sarah M. Champion
  • Kenneth E. Kunkel
  • Curt Tilmes


The third National Climate Assessment (NCA3) included goals for becoming a more timely, inclusive, rigorous, and sustained process, and for serving a wider variety of decision makers. In order to accomplish these goals, it was necessary to deliberately design an information management strategy that could serve multiple stakeholders and manage different types of information - from highly mature government-supported climate science data, to isolated practitioner-generated case study information - and to do so in ways that are consistent and appropriate for a highly influential assessment. Meeting the information management challenge for NCA3 meant balancing relevance and authority, complexity and accessibility, inclusivity and rigor. Increasing traceability of data behind figures and graphics, designing a public-facing website, managing hundreds of technical inputs to the NCA, and producing guidance for over 300 participants on meeting the Information Quality Act were all aspects of a deliberate, multi-faceted, and strategic information management approach that nonetheless attempted to be practical and usable for a variety of participants and stakeholders.


Information Management Global Change Research Technical Input National Climate Assessment Listening Session 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This paper is an assessment of the information management process associated with the NCA, however the Global Change Information System project included many key contributors and a wide variety of input. While it is not possible to name all of the GCIS contributors, those who played critical roles include: Anna Pinheiro Privette, April Sides, Steve Aulenbach, Andrew Buddenberg, Glynis Lough, Robert Wolfe, Brian Duggan, Justin Goldstein, Angel Li, RPI Tetherless World Constellation staff, NEMAC, Habitat Seven, the GCIS Interagency Working Group, the NCADAC, and the staff of both the NOAA Technical Support Unit and the USGCRP Coordination Office.

This work was partially supported by NOAA through the Cooperative Institute for Climate and Satellites — North Carolina under Cooperative Agreement NA14NES432003.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Second NatureBostonUSA
  2. 2.Cooperative Institute for Climate and Satellites-NCNorth Carolina State U/NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental InformationAshevilleUSA
  3. 3.NASA Goddard Space Flight CenterGreenbeltUSA

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