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MARI/CCPO Seminar Series

Putting Climate in Context: The Social Science Role in Developing Decision-Relevant Science for Climate Adaptation

Kirstin Dow, University of South Carolina

For 20 years, the NOAA Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessments (RISA) program has been working with decision-makers to produce decision-relevant and use-inspired research in support of climate adaptation. The RISA approach is unique for the emphasis on co-production of science and building long-term relationships with decision-makers at the regional level. This presentation draws on the experiences of the 10 RISA teams to discuss the role of social science and the types of approaches needed to put climate into context and research by the Carolinas Integrated Sciences and Assessments team to identify climate information needs in the Carolinas. The first of these projects considers time scales of climate information needs across the forestry, water resources, government management, tourism, and wildlife management in North and South Carolina. The second considers how social networks operate to support climate adaptation among those sectors and what factors make networks most useful. The presentation concludes with examples of bringing climate information into decision-makers' hands and lessons for the emerging climate services research agenda.