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World Climate Research Program

Type of Structure: program
Regional Scope: global
Parent Organisations: WCP.WMO, ICSU, IOC.UNESCO
No more in operation: ACSYS, AMIP, CMP, ESSP, IGOS, TOGA, WOCE
Duration : 1980 to present
Contact Address: Dr. David Carlson
World Climate Research Program WCRP
Case Postale 2300
1211 Genève 2
Phone: +41 (0) 22 730 82 46
FAX: +41 (0) 22 730 80 36
e-Mail: wcrp(at)

holding an official function in WCRP

General information and objectives

The WCRP was initiated in 1980 to "develop the fundamental scientific understanding of the physical climate system and climate processes needed to determine to what extent climate can be predicted and the extent of man's influence on climate".

The two overarching objectives of the WCRP are:
  • to determine the predictability of climate; and
  • to determine the effect of human activities on climate.
These two objectives underpin and directly address the needs of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and contribute to many other international policy instruments.

Core Projects/activities of WCRP and their focus:
  • The Global Energy and Water Cycle Experiment (GEWEX) leads the WCRP studies of the dynamics and thermodynamics of the atmosphere, the atmosphere's interactions with the Earth's surface (especially over land) and the global water cycle.
  • Climate Variability and Predictability (CLIVAR) is the main focus in WCRP for studies of climate variability
  • The WCRP research activity playing the leading role in better understanding the chemistry of the climate system is the Stratospheric Processes And their Role in Climate (SPARC)
  • The principal goal of the WCRP Climate and Cryosphere (CliC) project is to assess and quantify the impacts of climatic variability and change on components of the cryosphere and their consequences for the climate system, and to determine the stability of the global cryosphere
  • The goal of the Surface Ocean-Lower Atmosphere Study (SOLAS) is to achieve quantitative understanding of the key biogeochemical-physical interactions and feedbacks between the ocean and the atmosphere.
  • Modelling: The Working Group on Numerical Experimentation (WGNE), jointly established by the WCRP and the WMO Commission for Atmospheric Sciences (CAS), has the responsibility of fostering the development of atmospheric circulation models for use in weather prediction and climate studies on all time scales and diagnosing and resolving shortcomings. Under the auspices of the WCRP, the Atmospheric Model Intercomparison Project (AMIP) has facilitated controlled simulations of the ten-year period 1979-1988 by thirty different atmospheric models under specified conditions. The more complete Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP) was initiated in 2004. In 2005, WCRP facilitated the collection, archiving and access to all the global climate model simulations undertaken for the Fourth IPCC Assessment.

For further details, link to the WCRP Home Page

Last update: 3/24/15
Source of data: ProClim- Research InfoSystem (1993-2017)

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