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Evaluation of Climate Services: Enabling Users to Assess the Quality of Multi-model Climate Projections and Derived Products

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Handbook of Climate Services

Abstract

The core of climate services is to provide high quality climate-related information and data that are beneficial for the users. Between the provision of data and the application of climate services, a chain of providers and subsequent users exists. It is an ongoing challenge for providers to conclusively define what users perceive as beneficial regarding the quality of climate model output. This study aims (1) to understand the needs of users with regard to the quality of climate data and information, and (2) to enable providers to assess the quality of climate data input and derived products. From a large-scale survey, we distilled three main user groups: (i) Donna data (data user/product provider), (ii) Pete product (product user/product provider) and (iii) Nick non (potential-user). The survey results show that all three user groups struggle—amongst other things—with identifying reliable climate model output, that is relevant to their needs. They also desire guidance on how to evaluate the quality of climate model data to determine the suitability of the selected dataset for their purpose. Addressing this central need is breaking new ground. The evaluation of quality in the field of climate services in terms of climate model output is of high relevance to both climate model data users and providers of tailored climate information and not restricted to scientific standards and technical quality. We present a customized and tested tool (“QUACK”) as one of the first hands-on, scientifically-based and at the same time user-oriented guidelines on how to assure data quality and to self-evaluate the processing of the data.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    The detailed results of the survey are available upon request at the Climate Service Center Germany (GERICS) or Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S).

  2. 2.

    The complete evaluation cascade of QUACK including questions and guidance per indicator are available upon request to GERICS or Copernicus Climate Change Service.

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Acknowledgements

The presented work was done in the frame of two Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) contracts. C3S is implemented by the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) on behalf of the European Commission. GERICS contributed to both contracts as sub-contractors. C3S_51_Lot4_FMI—Data Evaluation for Climate Models (DECM Aug. 2016–Dec. 2018) coordinated by the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) with the following sub-contractors besides GERICS, University of Helsinki (Finland), Danmarks Meteorologiske Institut, (Denmark), Meteorologisk Institutt (Norway), Országos Meteorológiai Szolgálat (Hungary), CSC—Tieteen tietotekniikan keskus Oy (Finland), ABHL (France). C3S_422_Lot1_SMHI—Global users in the Copernicus Climate Change Service (Sep. 2017–Mar. 2019) coordinated by the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI). The following institutions as sub-contractors co-designed QUACK: AGRHYMET, BOM, CIIFEN, MPI, NAWAPI, NCWQR, NIH, UCR, UKZN. In-kind partner: Tokyo Metropolitan University, and Global Water Futures. The authors would like to thank all contract partners and C3S for their support during both the contracts.

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Correspondence to Maida Zahid .

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Zahid, M. et al. (2020). Evaluation of Climate Services: Enabling Users to Assess the Quality of Multi-model Climate Projections and Derived Products. In: Leal Filho, W., Jacob, D. (eds) Handbook of Climate Services. Climate Change Management. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-36875-3_10

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