CIRUN - Climate Information: Responding to User Needs
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Adapting to changes that can be abrupt and devastating or may last for decades requires serious advance planning by decision makers based on reliable predictive information and robust risk management. This information simply cannot be provided by conventional sources, such as day to day weather forecasts or 100-year global warming projections. What is needed is a partnership among climate scientists, experts from disciplines such as agriculture, engineering, public health, and risk management, companies which deliver specialized information, and decision makers in the private and public sectors.

CIRUN was created with the vision of developing and piloting effective ways to provide such actionable information: the environmental analogue of the “translational research” or “bench to the bedside” approach in medical research. It will focus on building links among the communities above through the following activities:

  • Pilot projects to deliver actionable information.
  • A program of workshops.
  • A public lecture series: Living with a Changing Planet.
  • Support for interdisciplinary proposals to federal agencies relevant to environmental change where connections to decision makers are important.
  • An active website.
  • Development of a database of potential collaborators in all the components of the information supply chain.

The CIRUN office is led by Steve Halperin, previously dean of the university’s College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences. Potential participants are invited to contact Vicki Brewer ( in the office by email or at 301-405-7009.

CIRUN would also welcome expressions of interest in providing philanthropic support.