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Risk Open Lecture on Climate Change by Prof Roger Street - 14th June, VG&M

Roger Street, University of Oxford, UK Climate Impacts Programme
5.30pm, Leggate Lecture Theatre, Victoria Building

Uncertainty is present in most if not all of our political, economic and social decisions, including those related to addressing our changing climate. Whereas for most of these decisions arguments of lack of absolute certainty do not hinder action, climate action has been questioned and the inherent uncertainty of climate science that has provided the basis for action has been used to call for disregarding or delaying that action. The overwhelming evidence on the changing nature of our climate and our increasing vulnerabilities however require that we take action now and continue to do so into the future. This means taking action that uses the evidence base, including the inherent uncertainties.

Within building resilience and adaptation to a changing climate, recognition that there is a need for action and that uncertainties will continue to exist has led to innovative ways of moving forward to identifying and taking action, including using relevant and robust evidence-based decision-making processes that incorporate the associated uncertainties with the intent of better informing decisions. This talk will explore the draw on scholarship and practices related to decision-making, and explore the value of including uncertainty in decision making drawing on examples from climate change adaptation. In this case, the value comes from managing and effectively incorporating the evidence and its uncertainties into decision-making processes, the resulting decisions and their implementation. In doing so there is increasing concern that ignoring or limiting the consideration of uncertainties increases the risk of wrongfully directed decisions or policies, including those with potential high social, economic and environmental costs.

About the Risk Lecture Series:

As part of the effort to connect the research in the Institute with prominent organisations, and to contribute to University's ongoing efforts in reaching out to the general public, an Open Lecture Series in Risk and Uncertainty will take place in 2017. High-profile speakers from government, industry and academia have been invited to deliver talks.

Register here

Marco De Angelis
Civil Engineering and Industrial Design