Mission of the IAMC

The Integrated Assessment Modeling Consortium (IAMC) is an organization of scientific research organizations that pursues scientific understanding of issues associated with integrated assessment modeling and analysis. The IAMC has three core missions.

  1. The IAMC facilitates and fosters the development of integrated assessment models (IAMs), peer interaction and vetting of research associated with IAMs, and the conduct of research employing IAMs, including model diagnosis, intercomparison, and coordinated studies.
  2. The IAMC promotes, facilitates and helps to coordinate interactions between IAMC members and members of other scientific research communities studying climate change such as the Climate Modeling (CM), the Impact, Adaptation, and Vulnerability (IAV), and the technology and engineering communities.
  3. The IAMC provides a point of contact with other institutions and organizations that use the science results of the IAM community, such as the IPCC.

Overview and History of the IAMC

The Integrated Assessment Consortium (IAMC) is an organization of scientific research organizations. The IAMC was created in 2007 in response to a call from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) for a research organization to lead the integrated assessment modeling community in the development of new scenarios that could be employed by climate modelers in the development of prospective ensemble numerical experiments for both the near term and long term.

Leaders from 3 institutions, John Weyant (Stanford Energy Modeling Forum, EMF), Nebojsa Nakicenovic (International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, IIASA) and Mikiko Kainuma (Japan’s National Institute for Environmental Studies, NIES), invited other research organizations to join in the formation of the IAMC for the purpose of developing scenarios.

The first task of the IAMC was to organize the research community to provide four scenarios, characterized by four different levels of radiative forcing in the year 2100 (see Moss, et al., 2008) and including data on emissions and concentrations of greenhouse gases, short-lived species, and aerosols, as well as associated land-use and land-cover, which could be used by the climate modeling community to develop new ensembles for the near and long term. Those four scenarios are referred to as Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs). In 2008 the IAMC met in Baden, Austria to discuss the development of the RCPs, which were at that time at a critical point in their development.

During the period leading up to the IAMC annual meeting in September 2009 held in Tsukuba, Japan, the organization was lead by the founders with resources donated by their associated organizations. At and following the 2009 IAMC annual meeting, a more formal structure was proposed and adopted to allow for greater transparency, participation from the broad IAMC community, and flexibility to simultaneously undertake multiple activities and interactions.

Integrated Assessment Models (IAMs) include representations of climate, using models and data generated by the climate modeling and research community, and Earth systems, using models and data generated by the impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability (IAV) modeling and research community. In turn, IAMs provide to the climate modeling community emissions scenarios of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and short-lived species (SLS) and land-use projections. IAMs provide to the IAV modeling community projections of socioeco- nomic states, general development pathways, and the multiple stressors of climate change.

Source: A. Janetos. 2009. Science Challenges and Future Directions: Climate Change Integrated Assessment Research.