MiKlip – Medium-term climate forecast

Background and Goals

There is a constantly increasing need for reliable information on climate developments covering years or even decades, as planning horizons - particularly in business but also in policy and society - are normally around 10 years. They are a key requirement for improving the ability of industry and society to adapt to the future climate.


As part of the "Medium-term climate forecast" funding programme, a model system will be created to obtain reliable information on climate development, anticipated changes in the climate and its extreme weather manifestations for time horizons of several decades. In many respects, the model system to be developed will be breaking new ground and there are huge challenges involved in developing and enhancing the methodology. This applies particularly to identification of the initial condition, definition of the critical processes for medium-term climate forecasts (e.g. modelling of the cryosphere or biosphere), increasing the geographical resolution by regionalisation, improving and adapting statistical post processing and ultimately synthesis and validation of the entire model system.

This approach extends the scope of research activities and measures for dealing with climate change as part of the federal government's high tech climate protection strategy in the area of "Knowledge - Basis for climate protection and adaptation".

The following modules will be completed:

- Module A: Initial conditions / initialisation. Creating medium-term climate forecasts requires a climate model to start from the best possible initial conditions. These must correspond to the observed climate conditions. This requires a good estimation of the current climate situation.

- Module B: Processes and modelling. Module B deals with the components and processes in the climate system that are relevant on the geographical and chronological scales for climate forecasting over decades and are either inadequately covered in current forecasting systems or are missing altogether.

- Module C: Regionalisation. For a given forecasting quality of global climate models, appropriate downscaling methods and ensemble systems are required to obtain regionalised climate information to deliver regional forecasts.

- Module D: Synthesis. Module D integrates the improvement proposals developed in the other modules into the central forecasting system for the next development stage.

- Module E: Validation. MiKlip module E has two objectives. One the one hand, new observation data records will be generated, distributed and used. This will involve major support and commitment from the German Meteorological Office (DWD). On the other hand, new process-based methods and tools will be developed and used to validate the MiKlip model system for forecasts over decades.

Content time


Research area/region

  • Germany

Steps in the process of adaptation to climate change

Step 1: Understand and describe climate change

Approach and results 

Development of a new model system for medium-term climate forecasting

Further Parameters 

All climate parameters

Further times 

Medium-term (next decades)

Step 2a: Identify and assess risks - climate effects and impact

Approach and results 

Climate change information will be provided across fields of activity for analysis of potential effects.


Funding / Financing 

Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)


Cooperation include:

GEOMAR - Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel;

German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ) - Helmholtz Centre Potsdam;

Max Planck Institute for Meteorology;

German Weather Service;

Institute for Meteorology, Free University of Berlin;

Institute for Meteorology and Climate Research, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT);

and many more


Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e.V. (DLR)
Linder Höhe
D-51147 Köln-Porz

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Fields of action:
 cross sectoral