Skip to content
Search Digital Science
See all posts →

What will Happen if the USA Reduces Support for Climate Change Research and Analysis? #ClimateChangeReport

8th May 2017
By Katy Alexander

At a time when funding for climate change research is under increasing attack, research shows the need for such information has never been more urgent.

Today, at the University of the Arctic, “Arctic Week Conference,” in Fairbanks, Alaska, Digital Science will publish a first-of-its-kind analysis of spending on global funding for climate change research in a report The Landscape of Climate Research Funding.

This report looks at the growth and content of climate research investment and notes its deep impact on monitoring, regulatory and policy organisations, using available funding data as an analytical source, for the first time.

Key findings include:

  • Funding towards climate research has grown since 2003 and forms around 1.7% of total research grants or $1.5 billion annually
  • Climate change research  has shifted from the understanding of  global systems research towards impacts and responses – studies around adapting to and mitigating climate change.
  • Critical cuts may not be to research but to the agencies that implement the research.  Direct USA funding data for climate change research reveals just the tip of the iceberg.
  • USA policy change could undermine the efforts of many other nations and international organisations unless other governments step in to remind the USA of its mutual service obligations.
  • Changes in the focus or magnitude of research funding in one research-intensive economy can have direct and significant consequences for the wider global research landscape; these impacts will not be recognized for quite a while since the nature of this research spans years.
  • U.S. historically leads in climate change funding, while the E.U. has significantly increased funding in recent years.
  • Research funding for ‘climate change’ is not spread evenly across the globe, because some systems and some peoples are much more vulnerable to its impact than others; Arctic habitats and communities face climate change at twice the rate of the rest of the world.

Jonathan Adams, Chief Scientist Digital Science says:

“The global research effort is shared because the climate is shared; so should be the responsibility to sustain these commitments.”

The research, authored by Digital Science, examining data from the Dimensions database of competitive research grants, which indexes more than $1 trillion across more than 1.5 million individual grants and awards, is intended to provide a baseline of data against which future changes in funding can be compared, and also to serve as a rallying cry for increased transparency in funding so the accuracy of such analyses can continue to improve over time.

You can join conversations online using #ClimateChangeReport.

© 2021 Digital Science & Research Solutions Ltd. All Rights Reserved