A major research programme led by Ricardo-AEA for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) will help to inform the policies described in a UK government report on adapting to the effects of climate change, which was laid before parliament yesterday

The first report on the National Adaptation Programme (NAP) sets out what government, businesses, communities and civil society are doing to prepare for and adapt to climate change. The Ricardo-AEA research programme, called PREPARE, produced five significant studies published by Defra yesterday which will help government to design the types of policies and services described in the NAP. Ricardo-AEA delivered the PREPARE research programme in partnership with Ipsos MORI, Alexander Ballard Ltd, the University of Leeds and a panel of experts in climate change adaptation.

The objectives of the PREPARE research programme were wide-ranging. They included improving understanding of the barriers and enablers to organizational and sectoral adaptive capacity in the UK and investigating the climate risk resilience and adaptation expectations of the public. PREPARE also sought to identify the contribution and role of household level adaptation, and to explore the overall equity and distributional impacts of climate change risks and adaptation options in the UK.

“We were very pleased to have led this important and complex programme of research for Defra,” said Ricardo-AEA’s adaptation knowledge leader Lisa Horrocks. “The multi-disciplinary consortium working on the programme brought together organizations with complementary strengths in social research, adaptation planning, behaviour change and adaptive capacity research. As a result, the five reports contain some fascinating, insightful findings which can contribute to the successful implementation of the UK Government’s National Adaptation Programme, and should also inform on-going research, debate and decisions on adaptation by many stakeholders.”