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Book Chapter

Understanding uncertainty as a key interdisciplinary problem in earth system science


Rauser,  Florian
Director’s Research Group AES, The Atmosphere in the Earth System, MPI for Meteorology, Max Planck Society;

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Rauser, F., & Geppert, G. (2017). Understanding uncertainty as a key interdisciplinary problem in earth system science. In K. Riley, P. Webley, & M. Thompson (Eds.), Natural Hazard Uncertainty Assessment: Modeling and Decision Support (pp. 21-29). Chichester: Wiley. doi:10.1002/9781119028116.ch3.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002D-444B-1
The emerging field of Earth system science integrates strongly disciplinary sciences with a multitude of new interdisciplinary fields in the joined attempt to understand the interactions and properties of the Earth system as a whole. Cross-disciplinary language problems are a natural consequence as every discipline brings with it a multitude of definitions, historical connotations, and interpretations of scientific language. In an attempt to help remedy this situation for Earth system science, the Young Earth System Science community (YESS) has worked in recent years on creating a description of what is meant when we talk of uncertainty in the Earth system sciences. The difference in methodology and quality of what different scientists mean when they refer to uncertainty is large, and in a series of workshops in 2012 and 2014 and an international conference in 2013, YESS has tried to bridge the disciplinary gaps a little. We believe that a consistent uncertainty language treatment within our field of research is a first step to a concrete representation of uncertainty in all spheres of scientific communication, from the disciplinary communication to the communication with stakeholders and the public. © 2017 by the American Geophysical Union.