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Detection and attribution science facing the future: the importance of not confusing problem-solving and solution-use
  • Johannes Persson
Johannes Persson
Lund University

Corresponding Author:johannes.persson@fil.lu.se

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With a few exceptions extreme weather event attribution is recognised as necessarily oriented towards tracing the history of present (or past) extreme events. However, it must be noted that the usefulness of a true causal claim linking climate change to its specific, local impacts may not be exhausted by its being an answer to a pre-specified scientific question about event attribution. This is because there is an important difference between problem-solving and solution-use. And solution-use can neither be controlled by the problem-solving science nor by its taskmasters. The users can have other questions than the problem-solvers. This commentary defends detection and attribution science’s importance for individuals’ adaptation decisions.