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Department of Geography


ISI-MIP2: phase 2 of the Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project

The Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project aims to compare potential future climate change impacts across different sectors and scales within a common framework and at different levels of projected warming. Consistent climate and socio-economic input data provide the basis for a cross-sectoral integration of impact projections.

In Cambridge we are developing and using models of ecosystem dynamics to contribute to the biomes component of ISI-MIP. In the first phase we used the HYBRID4 dynamic global vegetation model to examine the implications of the latest climate change predictions (analysed in the AR5 IPCC reports) for future natural vegetation at the global scale. HYBRID4 simulates the regeneration, growth, and death of individual trees of different types and grasses at the global scale using a gap-model approach, and includes many details of how plant physiological processes respond to environmental drivers. We have found that these features lead to different predictions than other more aggregated models, and are further developing and testing the performance of this and later versions of HYBRID within ISI-MIP2.


  • Friend AD, Lucht W, Rademacher TT, Keribin R, Betts R, Cadule P, Ciais P, Clark DB, Dankers R, Falloon PD, Ito A, Kahana R, Kleidon A, Lomas MR, Nishina K, Sebastian Ostberg S, Pavlick R, Peylin P, Schaphoff S, Vuichard N, Warszawski L, Wiltshire A, Woodward FI. 2013. Carbon residence time dominates uncertainty in terrestrial vegetation responses to future climate and atmospheric CO2. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 111, 3280-3285, doi:10.1073/pnas.1222477110
  • Friend AD and White A. 2000. Evaluation and analysis of a dynamic global vegetation model under preindustrial conditions at the global scale. Global Biogeochemics Cycles 14, 1173-1190.
  • Warszawski L, Frieler K, Huber V, Piontek F, Serdeczny O, Schewe J. 2013. The Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project (ISI-MIP): Project framework. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 111, 3228-3232, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1312330110

Maps showing changes in vegetation carbon, productivity, and carbon residence time predicted by seven different dynamic global vegetation models under the same climate change projection between A.D. 2005 and 2099. The capital letters indicate the processes in the models which strongly contribute to the productivity and residence time behaviour: D = dynamic vegetation, F = fire, N = nitrogen cycle, V = vapour pressure deficit effects on stomatal conductance, S = senescence response to temperature, and M = mortality response to temperature.