Advances in risk assessment for climate change adaptation policy

Climate change risk assessment involves formal analysis of the consequences, likelihoods and responses to the impacts of climate change and the options for addressing these under societal constraints. Conventional approaches to risk assessment are challenged by the significant temporal and spatial dynamics of climate change; by the amplification of risks through societal preferences and values; and through the interaction of multiple risk factors. This paper introduces the theme issue by reviewing the current practice and frontiers of climate change risk assessment, with specific emphasis on the development of adaptation policy that aims to manage those risks. These frontiers include integrated assessments, dealing with climate risks across borders and scales, addressing systemic risks, and innovative co-production methods to prioritize solutions to climate challenges with decision-makers. By reviewing recent developments in the use of large-scale risk assessment for adaptation policy-making, we suggest a forward-looking research agenda to meet ongoing strategic policy requirements in local, national and international contexts.

W. Neil Adger, Iain Brown, Swenja Surminski. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A 2018 376 20180106; DOI: 10.1098/rsta.2018.0106. 2018.