European citizens help scientists predict the impact of climate change
A recent article in The Guardian
has profiled how, thanks to an Oxford University project supported by the European Commission and Microsoft Research, citizens now have the opportunity to help scientists track the regional and local weather events caused by climate change.
The Weather at Home
project aims to create three regional climate models (Southern Africa, Europe, Western United States) to provide information on weather events in finer detail than is typically provided by global models. Results from different regions will be sent directly to scientists specialising in the climates of those regions for analysis: the Southern African region will be analysed by the University of Cape Town, Europe by Oxford University and the Met Office, and the Western USA by Oregon State University.
The international five-part study will allow researchers to better understand what global climate change means to all of us in our own backyards.
Microsoft Research is committed to helping solve tough societal challenges, like climate change, through data-intensive research. The ‘Weather at Home’ project is a great example of how you can use technology to involve and engage people in this imperative research. ‘Crowdsourcing’ – if you like – is being brought to support serious academic research. The project relies on the engagement of volunteers and it’s a natural progression for the project to take advantage of the trend toward social networking. It’s been a successful and collaborative project in the past and we’re hoping this evolution will further our understanding of global climate change.