Scoping is an initial phase of information-gathering to inform the design of a risk assessment that supports decision-making and planning by taking into account predetermined objectives, goals, values, policies, and planning frameworks, and establishing new ones if needed. This module defines the boundaries of a Climate Risk Assessment (CRA) and emphasises the importance of tailoring it to the specific context of the region or project. To achieve a successful CRA, it is imperative that there is a clear mandate to conduct the CRA and that it be co-designed together with relevant stakeholders, taking into account the specific context. Accurately assessing the available resources and coordinating stakeholder meetings is also crucial.
In the first step in a CRA you will define the context and purpose of the assessment by identifying the potential impacts of climate change on determined values, objectives, and targets. The subsequent step establishes the scope and the general method of conducting the CRA. The level of effort which an assessment requires depends on several factors, including the spatial scale, the number of systems and sectors under observation, and the number of sub-units. Correspondingly, the available time and effort must align with the employed methods. We recommend using impact chains and composite indicators for data-driven assessments as they help in-depth risk descriptions using evidence from various sources.
In the third step, you will define the system, its sub-systems, and the exposed elements (see figure below). These systems usually correspond to functional units or sectors (e.g. a watershed) and are often managed by the relevant institutional units (e.g. land use ministries, farmers’ association). The next step completes the review of existing data and information sources and defines the temporal and spatial scope of the CRA. We suggest focusing on the current situation, a near-term future (2021-2040), and potentially a mid-term future (2041-2060). Additionally, it is important to consider the influence of climate risks in the study area resulting from developments relating to exposure and vulnerability (e.g. demographic change; resource use needs). Gender diversity and vulnerability considerations must be identified early in the CRA if the system contains any existing inequalities.
Participatory stakeholder processes play a significant role in designing successful partnerships and resource allocation strategies. It is as important to work with participatory methods and tools as to consider gender and equity aspects in communication. Interaction between consultants and stakeholders throughout the process is essential. Finally, crafting a project plan with work packages and a realistic timeline will ensure the successful execution of the CRA.
Exemple of representing systems, subsystems, and exposed elements and their irrelationships in the scoping phase.