AIMES initiates, supports, and endorses synthesis and agenda setting workshops that encourage interdisciplinary insight into the role of human activity in the functioning of the Earth system across scales and disciplines. Expected workshop products include high-level scientific papers, modeling frameworks, model-data synthesis, or theoretical advancement. Workshops are initiated and organized by the International Project Office (IPO), Scientific Steering Committee (SSC) members, and AIMES community members, in coordination with the IPO and SSC. Workshop may be endorsed by AIMES in consultation with the IPO. Assistance in the organization of such workshops by the IPO or SSC members may be made. To express interest and receive more information about an AIMES endorsed workshop, email: 

Upcoming Events

Forest Dynamics in the Anthropocene: Reconciling Satellite and Model-Based Estimates of Forest Carbon Mitigation Potentials
13-15 April 2021, Virtual
Full Workshop Details
This workshop will convene an interdisciplinary team of key stakeholders from universities, national labs, federal agencies, and the private sector with expertise in remote-sensing insights, process-based knowledge of plant responses, and next generation Dynamic Global Vegetation Models. Participant presentations and discussions will specifically focus on how to integrate vegetation models with new remote sensing missions to inform how forests can mitigate climate change.  This AGCI workshop will bring together interdisciplinary experts in these fields, to build off recent developments in 1) the global availability of remote-sensing data on forest structure and biomass, 2) advances in the representation of demography and forest structure in land-surface models, and 3) the urgency in understanding the role of forests in climate mitigation as a ‘grand challenge’ in carbon cycle research. A workshop report will be released to inform the UNFCCC COP26.


Open Modeling Foundation Strategic Planning Workshop
TBD May 2021, Virtual
More about the Open Modeling Foundation
The Open Modeling Foundation (OMF) is an international open science community that works to enable the next generation modeling of human and natural systems. It is an alliance of modeling organizations that coordinates and administers a common, community developed body of standards and best practices among diverse communities of modeling scientists. The OMF also provides informational, data, and technological resources to facilitate the implementation of common standards and best practices among the scientific communities it serves. This strategic meeting is dedicated to discussion of the OMF initiative and its organization and community modeling standards. The meeting will be held virtually and will target Asia/Pacific time zones.


Tackling Technical Challenges in Land Data Assimilation
14-16 June 2021, Virtual
Full Workshop Details
There is growing consensus that land surface models need to be confronted with a wide range of data to constrain uncertainty in parameters, initialize surface states, and address model structural uncertainty. However, there are limited opportunities at scientific meetings to specifically discuss the challenges faced by modeling teams when implementing data assimilation (DA) techniques. To strengthen communication between modeling groups, this workshop will bring together land DA scientists to highlight a range of DA methods used within the community, discuss challenges facing different modeling communities, and identify strategies for addressing those challenges.


Linking Human and Earth System Models for Global Change Analysis
19-21 July 2021, Virtual
Full Workshop Details Coming Soon
Model and scenario analysis using models of the human and/or Earth System are important tools for global environmental change research. These approaches have informed past assessments produced by the IPCC and contribute to the current AR6 assessment cycle. However, as research questions and new assessments increasingly address the intersection of human and Earth systems, there seems to be a need for improved coupling between human and physical systems that would allow for feedbacks and interactions to occur and emergent properties to evolve. Understanding the coupling of these systems is a newly emerging field of research that requires a broad range of exploratory modeling approaches to address fundamental questions: What key feedbacks play a role in shaping the co-evolution of these systems, what are the best ways to model interactions between these systems, and what are the best ways to represent uncertainty in these interacting systems?

Past Events 

Joint AIMES-ESA Forum on Tipping Points in the Earth’s Climate 
26-29 January 2021, Virtual
Full Workshop Details
Since the threat of exceeding climate tipping points cannot be ruled out, they pose an existential threat to civilization and an important frontier for scientific effort: we need to reduce the uncertainties around their likelihood as well as the resilience of the Earth system. Efforts must include developing climate models to capture a richer suite of couplings and feedbacks in the Earth system to anticipate changes and prioritize mitigation efforts. We must also improve our observational records of the most sensitive aspects of the climate system and find more efficient ways to use these observations. This forum will focus on clarifying the role of Earth observations and necessary satellite data requirements to better monitor the climate system’s resilience to tipping points. Workshop participants will contribute to a citable report that will provide input to and guide the development of future ESA climate activities. 


Community Climate Intervention Strategies (CCIS) Workshop: The Future of Research
28-30 October 2020, Virtual
Full Workshop Details
The purpose of this workshop is to bring together key members from different research communities to develop coordinated interdisciplinary paths for future research on combined climate intervention strategies. We are proposing to develop a framework to 1) develop future scenarios that integrate mitigation, greenhouse gas removal and solar radiation management in a way that is informative for policy and social science research purposes, 2) facilitate collaboration on the development of methods for impact analysis—common metrics and shared datasets for the assessment of risks, benefits, limitations and uncertainties of different strategies, and 3) foster communication across communities to ensure that research aims and methodologies balance the priorities of the multiple communities and stakeholders involved. Prior to the in-person meeting, themed online webinars were planned in the months leading up to the rescheduled workshop.

owards Global-Scale Behavioural Models of Land Use Change
26-29 May 2020, Virtual
Full Workshop Details
This symposium will gather together an international group of researchers to tackle one of the most important challenges facing Earth System Science: the development of large-scale (national/continental to global) land-use models that are based on human behaviour, agency and decision-making processes. The ultimate aim of the work initiated here will be to identify pathways to sustainability that account for fundamental processes in human and natural systems in uncertain future conditions. Participants will work together towards a common ‘modelling framework’; a conceptual and technical design for integrated behavioural modelling of the land system that reflects the many different ways of understanding and modelling land use change processes. Due to COVID-19, the in-person symposium will take place in 2021.

Degradation of Tropical Forests: Observations, Modeling and Socio-Environmental Implications
11-13 November 2019, INPE, Manaus, Brazil
Full Workshop Details
Pervasive regions of the humid tropics have been degraded by human activity through selective logging, understory fires, and habitat fragmentation. Consequences of forest degradation range from loss of carbon stocks to loss of biodiversity leaving forests and the communities dependent on them vulnerable to climatic extremes. This workshop will bring together experts in land use and ecosystem modeling, field ecology, remote sensing, and social science to leverage the expertise, promote synergies among research communities and develop a formal strategy for better integration of observing, monitoring and modeling tropical forest degradation and its impacts in livelihoods regional sustainability under a changing climate and from a multi-scale perspective.

Large-Scale Behavioral Models of Land Use Change

8-10 September 2019, ASU, Tempe, Arizona, USA
Full Workshop Details
One of the major changes in our approach to modeling social-environmental dynamics such as anthropogenic land use change is that we need to upscale the approach to include much larger datasets, wider spaces and the detailed behavior of more people. At the same time, we need to study the dynamics in much more detail: going down to smaller plots, and include the behavior of much smaller entities. Indeed, much of social and geographical science has for some time been limited by the fact that spatially small-scale variations in landscapes and environments, as well as more detailed information about networks of people have limited the usefulness of our models and ideas. Doing this will substantively improve our understanding of the dynamics concerned and make our models also more useful for the implementation of policy measures. This workshop will focus on three major themes (1) big data (2) scaling up and (3) model integration.

AGU Chapman Conference on
 ‘Understanding Carbon-Climate Feedbacks’
26-29 August 2019, UCSD Scripps, San Diego, California, USA
Full Workshop Details
Uncertainties in the future trajectory of the Earth System stem largely from a lack of quantitative, mechanistic, and process-level understanding of the natural and human-perturbed carbon exchange processes that regulate the interannual-to-decadal atmospheric CO2 growth. Despite a great deal of  progress on the characterization of carbon-climate feedbacks across diverse aspects of the terrestrial, oceanic, and anthropogenic carbon cycles, there remain on the integrated roles of forcings and feedbacks in the evolution of atmospheric CO2.The overarching aim of this conference will be to bring together different pieces of the carbon-climate puzzle and to reach a community consensus on the large-scale efforts required to fundamentally advance carbon-climate feedback research.

ESM-IAM Collaboration on Future Scenarios: Opportunities and Perspectives

31May – 1 June 2019, JAMSTEC Tokyo Office, Tokyo, Japan
Full Workshop Details
Sustainable development is a long-term UN goal shared with all governments across the globe. To explore possibilities for sustainable pathways, in particularly compliant with the Paris Agreement, IPCC community is using Integrated Assessment Models (IAMs) and Earth System Models (ESMs). ESMs and IAMs share many common features, such as physical and environmental components, but they still are very different and inconsistent in their approaches and assumptions. Interactions and collaborations beyond boundaries of conventional scientific disciplines are necessary to explore plausible projections of future societal and environmental changes.  The goals of this workshop are to explore opportunities (e.g. harmonizing landuse models) and discuss perspectives of collaboration between ESM, IAM, and social science communities in developing novel interdisciplinary approaches to future projections.

Abrupt Changes, Thresholds, and Tipping Points in Earth History and Future Implications

14-16 November 2018, Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Hamburg, Germany
Full Workshop Details
The main objective of this workshop is to summarize and evaluate evidence on non-linear Earth System dynamics in recent geological history, and discuss how best to acquire, analyze and interpret such data to understand the risk of future abrupt transitions. Where applicable, we will discuss physical, biogeochemical, ecological and social processes that might have caused abrupt transitions to new states, and their relevance for Earth system models. We will assess the well-archived and relatively abundant paleoclimate data from the Quaternary period, and the skill of the current state of the art climate models to reconstruct past abrupt changes and predict abrupt climate change in the future. The meeting is jointly organized by the Future Earth global research projects: AIMES (Analysis, Integration and Modeling of the Earth System and PAGES (Past Global Changes).

International Alliance for Open Modeling Standards

29-30 June 2018, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, USA
Full Workshop Details
We need a new generation of modeling technology that can represent complexly coupled human and natural systems at multiple scales to support an integrative science based in complex systems concepts and methods. This technology should be flexible enough to confront rapidly changing and ever more complex and global issues. We also need to make this critical technology openly accessible so that scientists and other stakeholders from around the world can actively contribute diverse insights and all communities can freely use these tools to improve human well-being. 
The main purpose of this meeting is to create an initial organizational framework to enable and support a broad, community standards initiative. Since it is impractical for the entire, international community of modeling scientists as a whole to establish open modeling standards for transparency, reusability, and interoperability, there needs to be some kind of smaller body to coordinate such efforts, while still providing representation and opportunities for input from the broader community. The first step, then, in creating an environment for next generation models of human and earth systems is to establish a coordinating body that would create and apply the standards to make this possible.

Extending the Climate-Carbon Cycle Feedback Framework

25-27 April 2018, University of Bern, Switzerland
Full Workshop Details
This goal of this workshop is to extend the existing carbon feedback framework (concentration-carbon response β, climate-carbon response γ), to recognize different timescales (especially for the ocean) and to reduce the scenario dependence of the diagnosed feedback parameters. An improved framework to go beyond global temperature as measure of feedback, and include the water cycle, to enable more informative analysis of regional feedbacks was also discussed. The extended carbon cycle feedback framework will be tested against available CMIP5 simulations, and against CMIP6 simulations at a later stage. This workshop contributed to the WCRP Grand Challenge ‘Carbon feedbacks in the climate system,’ and was co-sponsored by WCRP, Oeschger Center for Climate Change Research, and AIMES.

Linking Earth System Dynamics and Social System Modeling

23-25 May, 2016, NCAR, Boulder, CO, USA

Tipping Points on Pathways to Sustainability 

14-15 September, 2016, Stockholm University, Sweden