and products into operations. Further, the report does not seek to address important issues uniquely related to climate research nor does it touch on intra- and interagency organizational procedures and practices. Instead, the report puts forth the committee’s judgment on the most pressing high-level, weather-focused research challenges and research-to-operations (R2O) needs, and makes corresponding recommendations. This report addresses issues including observations, global nonhydrostatic coupled modeling, data assimilation, probabilistic forecasting, and quantitative precipitation and hydrologic forecasting.
The report also identifies three important, emerging issues—predictions of very high impact (VHI) weather, urban meteorology, and renewable energy development—not recognized or emphasized in previous studies. Cutting across all of these challenges is a set of socioeconomic issues, whose importance and emphasis, although increasing, has been undervalued and underemphasized in the past and warrants greater recognition and priority today.
Socioeconomic considerations are fundamental in determining how, when, and why weather information is, or is not, used. They are an extremely important component of weather research and R2O (and also transfers from operations to research, O2R). Yet the weather prediction enterprise still lacks interdisciplinary capacity to understand and address socioeconomic issues. Socioeconomic expertise is underutilized in the weather community. There are key gaps in the socioeconomics of weather that, when filled, will substantially benefit the weather community and, more importantly, society at large. The committee identified three priority topics in the socioeconomics of weather information requiring attention: estimating its value, understanding its interpretation and use, and improving communication of information. Until these gaps are filled, the value of the work of the weather community will not be realized in the broader context of advancing weather prediction capabilities for societal benefit. The committee’s vision is that by ~2025, a core group of social scientists and meteorologists will form a strong, mutually beneficial partnership in which multiple areas of science work together to ensure weather research and forecasting meet societal needs.
Recommendation: The weather community and social scientists should create partnerships to develop a core interdisciplinary capacity for weather-society research and transitioning research to operations, starting with three priority areas: