Menu image/svg+xml

From Arrhenius to the IPCC Scientific dynamics and disciplinary anchoring of climate research

Science dynamics, community and discipline formation processes in climate research lie at the heart of this book. It combines the presentation of their (natural science) findings with reflections on the epistemic structure of climate theories and their disciplinary anchors and with an historical and sociological analysis of the scientific development dynamics of climate research. In retrospect, its development can be regarded as a success story although this was by no means (automatically) to be expected and underwent significant metamorphoses in several respects. Yet climate research is more a technical subject than a discipline.  The overall picture which emerges is that, one the one hand, most of our scientific knowledge about the climate was gathered in recent decades. On the other hand, the majority of central statements and theorems on climate structure and change have only been fully accepted as scientifically recognised facts in the past two decades.