[Coral-List] Climate Change perceptions

Albert Norström albert at ecology.su.se
Mon Nov 2 15:37:23 EST 2009

In response to Gene's query,

Yes, the IPCC reports are subject to a quite substantial peer review  
process. The following paragraphs summarize it neatly (cp:ed from the  
Union of Concerned Scientists website)

"The IPCC’s technical reports derive their credibility principally  
from an extensive, transparent, and iterative peer review process  
that, as mentioned above, is considered far more exhaustive than that  
associated with scientific journals. This is due to the number of  
reviewers, the breadth of their disciplinary backgrounds and  
scientific perspectives, and the inclusion of independent “review  
editors” who certify that all comments have been fairly considered and  
appropriately resolved by the authors. For example, see [2].

To be as inclusive and open as possible, a balanced review effectively  
begins with the choice of lead authors. By intentionally including  
authors who represent the full range of expert opinion, many areas of  
disagreement can be worked out in discussions among the authors rather  
than waiting until the document is sent out for review.

The first round of review is conducted by a large number of expert  
reviewers—more than 2,500 for the entire AR4—who include scientists,  
industry representatives, and NGO experts with a wide range of  
perspectives. Lead authors are required to consider all comments and  
incorporate those with scientific merit—a process overseen by review  
editors (two per chapter) who have expertise in the specific topic  
covered by a given chapter. All review comments are archived together  
with the authors’ responses and/or resulting actions, and are  
available upon request.

If major differences emerge, lead authors are encouraged to organize a  
meeting with both the contributing authors and review editors to  
discuss and resolve the differences. The goal is not to reach a  
potentially “watered-down” compromise that conceals scientific  
uncertainties or real differences in expert opinion, but to produce a  
report of the highest scientific integrity, reflecting the state of  
our understanding fairly and adequately.

The revised draft is then sent back to the expert reviewers and also  
to government representatives for the so-called government review  
stage. Each government is entitled to organize any type of review  
process it deems appropriate. The U.S. government, for example, seeks  
comments from agencies, scientific experts, and the general public  
(through a notice in the Federal Register) as the starting point for  
its comments. Again, lead authors prepare revisions in response to  
scientifically valid comments, and encourage reviewers and other  
experts to resolve any remaining major differences by communicating  
directly. The resulting document is then submitted to the working  
group’s plenary session for consideration and acceptance."

All the best,

On 2 nov 2009, at 18.37, Eugene Shinn wrote:

> Does anyone know if the IPCC reports were peer reviewed? and if so by
> whom? Gene
> -- 
> No Rocks, No Water, No Ecosystem (EAS)
> ------------------------------------  
> -----------------------------------
> E. A. Shinn, Courtesy Professor
> University of South Florida
> Marine Science Center (room 204)
> 140 Seventh Avenue South
> St. Petersburg, FL 33701
> <eshinn at marine.usf.edu>
> Tel 727 553-1158----------------------------------
> -----------------------------------
> _______________________________________________
> Coral-List mailing list
> Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list

> Albert Norström
> PhD Student
> Dept. Systems Ecology
> Natural Resource Management Group
> Stockholm University
> Kräftriket 9A
> 104 05 Stockholm
> Sweden
> Email: <mailto:albert at ecology.su.se>albert at ecology.su.se
> Personal page: <http://www.ecology.su.se/staff/personal.asp?id=119>http://www.ecology.su.se/staff/personal.asp?id=119

More information about the Coral-List mailing list