The mission of the Deep South Challenge: Changing with our Climate is to enable New Zealanders to adapt, manage risk and thrive in a changing climate.
We know that scientists, industry and communities must work together if society is to adapt to our changing climate. Climate science can be complex and challenging, and isn’t always effectively incorporated in planning and decision making. Our challenge is unique among climate research programmes in New Zealand for the way it joins together physical science, predictive climate modelling and social science. To guide planning and policy, we're bringing together new research approaches to determine the impacts of a changing climate on our climate-sensitive economic sectors, infrastructure and natural resources.
We’re engaging closely with central and regional government, whānau, hapū and iwi, business, infrastructure and industry. We’re collaborating with decision makers to share our research about the kinds of climate change impacts we can expect in the coming decades and centuries, and to develop the kinds of tools required to help people make decisions in the face of complex changes in the future.
Through innovative community engagement and multi-disciplinary research collaborations, our five interlinked programmes connect scientists with society.
Our objective, set by Cabinet, is to understand the role of the Antarctic and Southern Ocean in determining our climate and our future environment. Building on our objective, our mission was developed to guide our vision, research priorities and activities.
Our mission is to enable New Zealanders to adapt, manage risk, and thrive in a changing climate.
Our governance and management structure
The following schematic outlines our governance and management structure. Māori leadership and input is included at all levels.
Independent Science Panel
The Independent Science Panel provides our Board with independent science advice and input into the challenge’s science strategy and priorities. The panel also helps with assessments of science quality and performance.
Our independent Board was appointed by the collaborative parties of the Deep South Challenge.
Our Kāhui Māori provides the Governance Board and Science Leadership Team with strategic advice and input into our science strategy and priorities, and helps with the assessment of science quality, performance and responsiveness to iwi, hapū, whānau and Māori business goals.
Representative User Group (RUG)
Our Representative User Group (RUG) is comprised of key practitioners and knowledge holders from across our four key Domains. The RUG provides the Challenge with an accessible and representative partners and stakeholders, enabling us to: identify the most relevant stakeholders for particular research within key sectors; ‘ground truth’ research recommendations and key messages; seek feedback on research prior to release; and collaborate on research promotion and engagement opportunities.
Read more about our Representative User Group
Challenge Leadership Team
The Challenge Leadership Team (CLT) is responsible for scoping, leading and developing of the Deep South Challenge.
The Deep South Challenge, hosted by NIWA, is a research collaboration between the following Crown Research Institutes, universities and research providers:
Latest news and updates
We in the Deep South Challenge have established a critical new position, the "Climate Change Knowledge Broker". This person will play a critical role in the Deep South Challenge as a translator between disciplines, enabling connections between different research programmes for maximum impact. In particular, the Climate Change Knowledge Broker will focus on making the outputs from the New Zealand Earth System Model (NZESM) and associated climate models, accessible to research in other programmes within the Challenge as well as to external stakeholders. Applications close Monday 11 May.
New research released by the Deep South Challenge: Changing with our Climate supports decision-makers to map out how decisions can be made now for ongoing climate change impacts, by starting with the future we wish to avoid. The research report, Supporting decision making through adaptive tools: Practice Guidance on signals and triggers, has been a multi-disciplinary and multi-institute effort, with team members from Victoria University of Wellington, Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research, and NIWA.
Weather-related hazards have already cost the EQC $450 million in (inflation adjusted) payouts since the year 2000. New research by Jacob Pastor-Paz, Ilan Noy, Isabelle Sin, Abha Sood, David Fleming-Munoz and Sally Owen has found that climate change, and the expected increase in intensity and frequency of extreme weather-related events, is likely to translate into higher damages and thus an additional financial liability for the EQC.