A dedicated webpage has been published for the outputs of the UK-SSPs project, which are available for people to use. This includes a set of narratives; semi-quantitative trends; quantifications for specific variables; and visualisations of the interrelationships between those variables for a nested set of UK and country-specific SSPs that are consistent with the global/European context. This allows UK-specific research by the climate resilience community that is consistent with the IPCC process, including research and analysis for the fourth Climate Change Risk Assessment. There is also a separate summary infographic illustrating the project.
View a storymap about combining the UK-SSPs with climate data
The context for the project
This project will produce UK specific downscaled socio-economic narratives and gridded data for a range of indicators, extended to 2100. These will be internally consistent as well as consistent with the Shared Socio-economic Pathways (SSPs) that will underpin the next IPCC assessment report.
There are key UK climate resilience research questions which require the availability of robust exposure and vulnerability data. Several global socioeconomic scenario exercises have emerged from the climate change, biodiversity and ecosystem service communities some of which have been interpreted and downscaled to regions, including Europe and the UK. However, these tend not to be comprehensive in treating the full range of possible socioeconomic change drivers or are not easy to map to international scenarios. Further, as yet, no regionally enriched versions of the global SSPs are publicly available for the UK to combine with RCP-based climate projections.
This new project aims to fill this gap by developing a set of internally consistent socioeconomic scenarios for the UK that is coherent with the IPCC SSPs, and which will provide the basis for further UK research on climate risk and resilience.
Key project aims and objectives
The project has a number of objectives:
- to identify key socioeconomic indicators needed to address climate resilience issues
- to downscale the existing global and European SSPs for the UK by extending them spatially, temporally and sectorally
- to develop a modelling framework that captures the interrelationships between different socioeconomic indicators in the scenario narratives
- to create internally consistent quantitative projections for the key socioeconomic indicators
- to publicise the new scenarios to the UK climate resilience community
The role of the User Panel and Advisory Group
An important aspect of the project is engagement with the climate resilience community, who are potential users of the scenarios. A User Panel, consisting of stakeholders and researchers from different disciplines relevant to climate resilience research, are providing the project team with input and feedback throughout the project. The role of the separate Advisory Group is to support the project team in ensuring the outputs of the project are directly usable within the UKCR SPF programme in general and meet the requirements of future CCRAs.
This project is funded under the Met Office work package ‘From Climate Hazard to Climate Risk’
Outputs: Products of the UK-SSPs project
Project website: UK socioeconomic scenarios for climate research and policy (UK-SSPs)
Presentation: Co-creating socio-economic scenarios to support future research and policy on UK climate risk and resilience by Paula Harrison of the UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology
- Merkle, M., Dellaccio, O., Dunford, R., Harmáčková, Z.V., Harrison, P.A., Mercure, J-F., Pedde, S., Seo, B., Simsek, Y., Stenning, J., Rounsevell, M., 2023. Creating quantitative scenario projections for the UK shared socioeconomic pathways. Climate Risk Management, Volume 40, 100506.
- Brown, C., Seo, B., Alexander, P., Burton, V., Chacón-Montalván, E.A., Dunford, R., Merkle, M., Harrison, P.A., Prestele, R., Robinson, E.L., Rounsevell, M., 2022. Agent-Based Modeling of Alternative Futures in the British Land Use System. Earth’s Future, Volume 10, Issue 11.
- Merkle, M., Alexander, P., Brown, C., Seo, B., Harrison, P.A., Harmáčková, Z.V.; Pedde, S. and Rounsevell, M., 2022. Downscaling population and urban land use for socio-economic scenarios in the UK. Regional Environmental Change. 22, 106
- Zuzana V. Harmáčková, Simona Pedde, James M. Bullock, Ornella Dellaccio, Jennifer Dicks, George Linney, Magnus Merkle, Mark D.A. Rounsevell, Jon Stenning, Paula A. Harrison, 2022. Improving regional applicability of the UK shared socioeconomic Pathways through iterative participatory co-design, Climate Risk Management, Volume 37, 2022, 100452.
The paper below describes the UK-SCAPE versions of the UK-SSPs that the UKCR project has further extended spatially, temporally and sectorally.
- Pedde, S., Harrison, P., Holman, I., et al. 2021. Enriching the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways to co-create consistent multi-sector scenarios for the UK. Science of the Total Environment, Volume 756, 143172.
The project is commissioned by the Met Office and is funded by the UK Climate Resilience Programme. It is carried out by Cambridge Econometrics in collaboration with the UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (UKCEH), University of Edinburgh and University of Exeter. The development of the UK-SSPs built upon work carried out by UKCEH’s UK-SCAPE Programme delivering National Capability.