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Overview

by Mareen E. Hofmann

The ADAM project "Meta-analysis of climate change impacts, vulnerability and adaptation (CCIVA) assessments in Europe" aimed at developing a general scheme of relating CCIVA studies as well as to provide a systematic overview of what is known about CCIVA in Europe.

The project was motivated by the fact that knowledge on CCIVA in Europe is fragmented and not easily accessible to adaptation decision-makers interested in a specific region and specific sector. While large scale syntheses such as the Assessment Reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) provide an high level overview of what is known about CCIVA, they do not give a systematic account of what is known about a particular region or sector, of how this knowledge is generated, and which assumptions underlie this knowledge.

We therefore applied the method of meta-analysis to scientific journal articles taken from the Europe chapter (Chapter 12) of the Working Group II contribution to the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report in order to develop a general scheme of relating CCIVA studies. It provides a systematic overview of what is known about CCIVA in Europe, how this knowledge is generated and where research gaps still exist. We focussed on the major adaptation-relevant sectors: agriculture and fisheries, water resources, energy and transportation, tourism and recreation, property insurance, and human health.

The following pages outline the approach of the project as well as the results obtained. In addition, it is possible to access the database of studies prepared and considered in order to search for studies according to sector and other thematic labels, countries, methodologies, etc.

On the basis of these findings we recommend establishing, within the IPCC, a systematic large-scale effort that continuously syntheses CCIVA research findings in order to inform future research as well as to provide a basis for regional and local adaptation decision making. Central to this effort would be a web-based editorial process by which those who conduct CCIVA studies can submit a structured abstract via the Internet. The categories developed here could serve as a starting point for structuring the abstracts. The lead authors of the respective Working Group II chapters could act as editors of this process, controlling quality of the submitted structured abstracts.

For a more detailed description of the project and its results, we refer to
(Hofmann and Hinkel, forthcoming).

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