What the Global Climate Adaptation Research Collection Tells Us

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climate adaptation platform research stocktake

Research on climate adaptation is growing fast and covers various academic communities to help us build resilience from climate change impacts.

Documenting all climate adaptation responses such as the type of adaptation, who benefits or for whom it is being done, and what measures are working are needed to develop the best climate action possible.

Also, climate adaptation practitioners will benefit from studies that present what conditions are essential to inform whether these climate actions are adequate to reduce the climate change consequences like flood risk, heat, and drought.

An international study of 126 scientists screened more than 48,000 scientific papers and identified 1,682 articles that met their inclusion criteria.

These are studies that document the implementation of climate adaptation on the ground or adaptation actions that have taken place rather than studies on vulnerability assessments, models of climate adaptation, or those that focus on decision-making processes, adaptation governance, and planning.

A stocktake of literature on climate adaptation reveals that “documented adaptations were largely fragmented, local and incremental, with limited evidence of transformational adaptation and negligible evidence of risk reduction outcome.”

Researchers identified eight priorities for global climate adaptation research. According to the study, “these recommendations are drawn from key insights that emerged from our results, combined with our collective  reflection  on  critical  gaps  in  research  and  knowledge  that  constrain  the  assessment  and  learning  on  progress  towards  adapting to climate risks globally.”

  • assess the effectiveness of adaptation responses
  • enhance the understanding of limits to adaptation
  • enable individuals and civil society to adapt
  • include missing places, scholars, and scholarship
  • understand private sector responses
  • improve methods for synthesizing different forms of evidence
  • assess the adaptation at different temperature thresholds, and
  • improve the inclusion of timescale and the dynamics of responses

Read the entire study by clicking the link provided in the “Source” below.


Berrang-Ford, L., Siders, A.R., Lesnikowski, A. et al. A systematic global stocktake of evidence on human adaptation to climate change. Nat. Clim. Chang. 11, 989–1000 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-021-01170-y

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