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Advanced Earth-system models

Specific challenge: The provision of trustworthy science-based climate information to government, public and private decision makers is a fundamental prerequisite for both properly managing the risks society is facing and seizing the opportunities this implies. In order to meet societal expectations, a significant improvement in the prediction of the climate system (in a seamless way from seasonal-to-decadal and centennial timescales) is needed.

To address these challenges, the climate science community will need to enter into a new era of climate information systems, which take into account the usefulness, provision, accessibility and quality of data. In order to maintain Europe’s leadership in this field and meet the challenges of climate change, significant progress is required in parallel in the development of both climate modelling and science for climate services.

Scope: Proposals should develop a new generation of advanced and well-evaluated global climate and Earth-system models as well as sophisticated climate related prediction systems with the aim of providing to governments, business and society in general state-of-the-art trustworthy scientific input to climate risk assessments at decadal to centennial time scales at the highest spatial resolution possible. Relevant physical, chemical and biological Earth-system processes, including anthropogenic drivers as well as socio-economic aspects and their feedback need to be adequately incorporated into climate models predictions and projections at the appropriate scale. New methods for representing uncertainties in Earth-system models should help to assess the reliability of regional responses and their impacts on key economic sectors. Advanced high resolution Earth-system models should also provide the basis for producing novel climate scenarios. Future models should have the capability of better understanding past climatic variability and its causes and impacts (societies, resources and ecosystems) as well as recent climate records.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 10 and 15 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected impact: Improved science based foundation to better assess the impacts of climate variability and change at decadal to centennial time scales, to support the development of effective climate change policies and optimize private decision-making. Robust, credible and trustworthy climate predictions and projections to make in the medium- and long-term European business sectors more resilient and competitive at global scale.  Project outcome should support the post-AR5 IPCC process and other relevant international scientific assessments, and provide a solid scientific basis for future science cooperation and policy actions at European and international level.

Type of action: Research and innovation actions