Why is predicting the impact of climate change so difficult?

You can't manage what
you don't measure.

W. Edward Deming

The GEMM Initiative is engaging universities, research centers, measurement standards agencies, companies, and other scientific societies around the world to form GEMM regional centers and provide a critical focal point for researchers, technology developers and policy makers.


An inverse problem in science is the process of calculating from a set of
observations the causal factors that produced them.

To measure is to know - if
you cannot measure it, you
cannot improve it.

- Lord Kelvin


Industrial pollution and greenhouse gases current impact all sevent continents, five oceans, and 13 climate zones in different ways and with future trajectories that are difficult to predict.

Climate change is impacting regions across the globe in widely variable ways. In response to destabilizing environmental events, governments and the private sector are making major political and economic policy decisions that attempt to mediate the impact of climate change, often with incomplete data.


We are bridging the gap between policymakers, modelers, and technology for improved environmental and climate change impact planning.

The initiative is engaging multidisciplinary regional centers and leveraging experts already in place at academic institutions worldwide. These centers and experts are focusing on creating and sharing new measurement technologies and climate models, all to enable better government and commercial industry decision-making.

The GEMM Initiative is supported by The Optical Society and the American Geophysical Union.

GEMM utilizes the global operations of both societies to convene meetings and facilitate data sharing and greater collaboration.