Climate services: the legacy of the CLARA project

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15 climate services developed and supported in their market uptake, an original card game and a new website showcasing the scientific knowledge developed by an outstanding international team. On the International Day of Disaster Risk Reduction 2020, the CMCC Foundation presents the legacy of the project “Climate forecast enabled knowledge services” (CLARA).

Climate change entails important economic, social, and environmental risks in Europe and globally. Societies need a deep transformation to face these risks by designing a more climate-resilient future, driven by innovation. Held every 13 October, the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction celebrates how people and communities around the world are reducing their exposure to disasters and raising awareness about the importance of reining in the risks that they face. In this context, the project “Climate forecast enabled knowledge services” (CLARA), coordinated by the CMCC Foundation, ends after three and a half years of work on the subject, leaving a legacy of new knowledge, tools and strategies for reducing risk, improving the efficiency of water management, and improving resilience to climate variability and change.

Thanks to an unprecedentedly fast scientific progress, bespoke indicators and metrics can now signal where the climate can be hostile to productive activities for every sector around the globe. Climate services identify the risks associated with adverse climate events and offer data products and tailored information to allow the users to take climate-smart decisions. This approach puts the future risks into present considerations, preventing losses and increasing the profit margin.

The project “Climate forecast enabled knowledge services” (CLARA) developed 15 climate services that make use of seasonal forecasts, climate projections and sectorial information systems, and sustained their marketability and value to improve decision making. Funded by the European Commission under the EU Horizon 2020 – Research and Innovation program and carried on by an international partnership led by the CMCC Foundation, the project concluded on September 30, 2020, announcing the CLARA website redesign and the launch of a card game, Climate Devil’s Advocate.

The newly designed website, accessible at the URL, is faster and more user-friendly. It provides visitors an easier way to learn about the world of climate services, and includes a showcase of the services developed in the context of the project, organized in five climate adaptation areas (in addition to a section of horizontal services): disaster risk reduction, water resource management, agriculture and food security, renewable energy, and public health. Users can find information on the project and on its results by browsing through its policy briefs, its brochure, its scientific publications and deliverables, or watching at the videos of events and webinars organized during the project.

The cards game “Climate Devil’s Advocate” is a print-at-home and publicly available game that guides climate services development teams along the business model creation process. Workshops and focus groups are the best venues to test the game, which uses tools from different disciplines ranging from international management to sociology. In line with the project’s aims, the playing team will learn how to develop its own climate service-specific business model to satisfy the needs of the providers, the users’ requirements and the market characteristics.

Indeed, the project aimed to smooth and accelerate the deployment of climate forecast-enabled services by fostering their market uptake. “We employed insightful market analysis and outreach activities capable of scaling up the diffusion and use of CLARA-enabled climate services” said the project coordinator and CMCC scientist Jaroslav Mysiak. “The success of this project is due to a combination between robust scientific knowledge and the involvement of end users, purveyors, and services providers in the co-design and co-development of innovative climate services: our Multi-User-Forum saw the participation of more than 70 representatives from regional public entities, entrepreneurs and businesses, experts and civil society groups that informed and reviewed the project’s development”.

For more information about the CLARA project, visit the website

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