There is growing awareness that climate change cannot solely be considered as a “mean state” modification. The impacts of climate change are closely tied to regional and local conditions. Changes in the characteristics, frequency, and severity of extreme weather events are amongst the most significant aspects of climate change. To understand and predict such events, which are typically responsible for the most disastrous climate impacts, is of paramount importance. Not all extremes lead to high impacts. However, high impact events are conditioned based on the exposure and vulnerability of particular regions or locations. Different types of extremes, e.g. droughts and extreme precipitation, might be associated with different regions.

This Collaborative Programme examines how high impact events work, how they can be simulated accurately in numerical models and how we might be able to project future changes reliably, highlighting the important regional differences regarding their impacts. As such, high resolution climate and impact modelling as well as downscaling with different methodologies are among the key issues. The CP further focuses on climate risk analysis, vulnerability and adaptation.

We work based on a list of science topics. The science topics can be adjusted and allow flexible participation of ECRA and non-ECRA partners. The general strategy starts from fundamental physical concepts, continues via process understanding and goes towards the best possible numerical simulations of the global and regional changes of extreme events, including composition-climate interactions, feedback and impacts.

Key topics

imageUnderstanding mechanisms:
Assessment of past and future high impact events


imageProjecting changes:
High resolution climate and impact modelling


CP HIE Picture3Producing climate information at relevant scales:
Downscaling with different methodologies


imageCo-creating climate services with users:
Climate risk analysis, vulnerability and adaptation



Collaboration (Projects/Initiatives)

This CP has organised side events at the International Conference on Regional Climate (ICRC)-CORDEX and joint Workshops with the ECRA CP Changes in the Hydrological Cycle (see below).


The CP HIE has organised three Workshops so far and two joint Workshops together with the CP Changes in the Hydrological Cycle.

For further information on the Workshops, please follow this link.


The CP HIE has a White Paper containing information on the CP’s general scope, activities and an implementation plan. The current White Paper from 2014 (working document) is available for download at this link.

An Introduction Brochure to the Collaborative Programme has been published in March 2015 and is available for download here (pdf).

A Factsheet presenting key issues as well as recommendations for research priorities in H2020 and beyond was prepared for ECRA’s General Assembly 2017. It is available for download here.


The CP is coordinated by

Hilppa Gregow: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (Finnish Meteorological Institute)

Martin Drews: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (Danmarks Tekniske Universitet)

Please contact the secretariat for information (e.g. Mailinglist)

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