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Impact of Arctic changes on the weather and climate of the Northern Hemisphere
Deadline: Feb 17, 2016  

 International Cooperation
 Horizon Europe
 Climate Sciences

Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

The climate is changing more rapidly in the Arctic than in any other region. There is evidence that these changes strongly affect ecosystems, people and communities inside and outside of the Arctic, including in Europe and North America. A better representation of processes specific to the Arctic (e.g. related to sea-ice formation and melting) in weather and climate models is required to better constrain the role of the Arctic in the global climate system and in the generation of extreme weather events. In connection with improved observations in the Arctic (see topic BG-09), this is necessary to improve the predictability of weather and climate in the Northern Hemisphere, and of related risks.


Proposals should develop innovative approaches to improving the descriptions and modelling of the mechanisms, processes and feedback affecting Arctic climate change and its impacts on the weather and climate of the Northern Hemisphere, to further develop state-of-the-art climate models and predictions. Model performance should be assessed, and their ability to represent the links between polar and lower latitudes should be evaluated through coordinated model experiments. Actions should also explore the potential that an improved Arctic observation system – the subject of another topic in this call – would have on the accuracy of weather, and climate forecasts in the Northern Hemisphere, including Europe and North America, and also should identify gaps in data and observations. The activities should contribute to the programme of the Year of Polar Prediction (YOPP)[[]] and provide input to the improvement of short- to medium-term predictions of the Copernicus Climate Change Services (C3S)[[]]. Proposals should include a work-package to cluster with other projects financed under this topic and if possible also under other parts of Horizon 2020, and should build on projects funded under earlier calls. Links with projects resulting from the Belmont Forum call on climate predictability[[]] are also welcome. Proposals should develop relevant forms of communication with the EU (and possibly national) services to adequately disseminate results that could be used for policy action. In line with the strategy for EU international cooperation in research and innovation[[(COM(2012)497)]], actions should contribute to implementing the Transatlantic Ocean Research Alliance. Due to the specific challenge of this topic, in addition to the minimum number of participants set out in the General Annexes, proposals should benefit from the inclusion of partners from the USA and from Canada[[Please note that participants from developed countries are not eligible for Horizon 2020 funding.]]. International cooperation with partners from other Arctic and non-Arctic third countries is also strongly encouraged.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 7 million and EUR 8 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude the submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Projects funded under this topic will by default participate in the Pilot on Open Research Data in Horizon 2020, with the option to opt-out, as described in the introduction[[Beneficiaries of projects participating in the pilot on open research data should follow the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS) Data Sharing Principles and register in GEOSS the geospatial data, metadata and information generated as part of the project. Further information on GEOSS can be found at]].

Expected Impact:

The project results are expected to:

  • Improve capacity to predict the weather and climate of the Northern Hemisphere, and make it possible to better forecast of extreme weather phenomena;
  • Improve the capacity to respond to the impact of climatic change on the environment and human activities in the Arctic, both in the short and longer term;
  • Improve the capacity of climate models to represent Arctic warming and its impact on regional and global atmospheric and oceanic circulation;
  • Improve the uptake of measurements from satellites by making use of new Earth observation assets;
  • Lead to optimised observation systems for various modelling applications;
  • Contribute to a robust and reliable forecasting framework that can help meteorological and climate services to deliver better predictions, including at sub-seasonal and seasonal time scales;
  • Improve stakeholders’ capacity to adapt to climate change;
  • Contribute to better servicing the economic sectors that rely on improved forecasting capacity (e.g. shipping, mining);
  • Contribute to the Year of Polar Prediction (YOPP) and IPCC scientific assessments, and to the Copernicus Climate Change (C3S) services.
  • Improve the professional skills and competences for those working and being trained to work within this subject area.

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