M16 - Resilience: The science of Adapting to Climate Change

Convenor: Keith Alverson
Co-convener: Zinta Zommers  

This session will critically examine the science of resilience, focusing specifically on the evidence base for climate change adaptation. While the research community has been highly engaged in detecting global climate change and attributing this change to anthropogenic causes, data driven analysis of adaptation options has been weak. Huge sums of money are being spent on climate change adaption, and the IPCC estimates that the costs of adaptation will only increase – reaching up to $100 billion a year by 2050. Yet, for the most part, adaptation actions have not been underpinned by solid scientific analysis. Sustained monitoring and evaluation, beyond the typical adaptation project life cycle, has been a major lacuna, leading to substantial uncertainty in the overall, long-term efficacy of adaptation projects.

This symposium invites contributions -from different disciplinary and geographical perspectives - on the latest assessments of adaptation. Studies of effectiveness of resilience tools or adaptation approaches, including early warning, risk transfer mechanisms and community-based adaptation, are especially encouraged.