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[Climate Change] Fit-For-Purpose modelling to be useful!

This blog is a continuation of yesterday's blog. I wrote about the problem with the UN IPCC's Special Report on Limiting Climate Change to 1.5 degrees Celsius, which says that scenarios are created without taking into account targets other than climate change. This policy brief says that this is an ordinal model problem and that we need to take a different approach to modelling. This approach is described as Fit-For-Purpose modelling. In other words, it was pointed out that models are simplifications of reality and do not represent all phenomena. It is better to build models for which stakeholders are needed in reality and find out through dialogue with the people involved, although this purpose may not be the one the modeller wants. The following is an extract from the policy brief. The following is an extract from the policy brief

Van Vliet, O., & Takama, T. (2018). (Rep.). Climate Strategies. Retrieved July 14, 2021, from

3. Improving the national and international policy relevance of integrated assessment modelling (IAM)

The first requirement for improving the national and international policy relevance of IAMs would be to use the most appropriate model for the relevant question. That is, the model(s) should be selected based on the questions that need to be answered, rather than fitting the question to the model(s), as is common practice today. Models are inherently a simplification of reality, and no model fits every topic and context. However, the scope and detail of IAMs and their simulations vary greatly. Those that best cover the themes and context of a specific policy strategy can be extremely useful for exploring specific questions and options relating to low carbon transitions. Choosing the most suitable IAM(s) is a first step for modellers to present convincing, consistent and coherent illustrations of possible future developments.

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