The Challenge

About the Challenge

Scientists, industry and communities must work together if society is to adapt to the changing climate.

Climate science can be complex and overwhelming, but it is the basis of understanding climate change and its impacts. Because of this, climate science is not always used effectively in planning and decision-making.

The Challenge objective

The Objective set by Cabinet for the Deep South Challenge is to understand the role of the Antarctic and Southern Ocean in determining our climate and our future environment.

Building on this Objective, the Mission was developed to guide the vision and research priorities and activities of the Challenge.

The Challenge mission

The mission of the Challenge is to enable New Zealanders to adapt, manage risk, and thrive in a changing climate.

Working with communities and industry we will bring together new research approaches to determine the impacts of a changing climate on our climate-sensitive economic sectors, infrastructure and natural resources to guide planning and policy.

This will be underpinned by improved knowledge and observations of climate processes in the Southern Ocean and Antarctica - our Deep South - and will include development of a world-class earth systems model to predict Aotearoa/New Zealand's climate.

Connecting society with science

The Challenge Mission will be achieved through a framework that connects society with scientists through five inter-linked programmes. These programmes will combine community engagement with an innovative climate prediction system - the Earth System Model - all of which will be strengthened by new observations and enhanced knowledge of processes in the Deep South region.

This diagram shows the structure through which the five programmes will work together. The three core inter-connected research Programmes will be guided by and incorporate the research and related activities from within the Vision Mātauranga and Engagement Programmes. Click on the image to expand it.

Infographic - the Deep South National Science Challenge explained. Click on the image to expand it.

Latest news and updates

Climate Change Engagement in Aotearoa New Zealand

A new report released by the Deep South Challenge this month recommends increasing the availability of plain-language resources about climate change in both English and te reo Māori, framing scientific information for application to practical decision making, and increasing access to climate change conversations for a wider array of end-users.

Science Leadership Team – Expressions of Interest

Expressions of interest are being sought for the role of Science Leadership Team (SLT) member for the Engagement Programme of The Deep South National Science Challenge.

DSC Seminar #3: Dr Huhana Smith on Climate Change and Coastal Māori Communities

“We need to keep designing opportunities for iwi and hapū to see the potential of what adaptive change can look like.”—Dr Huhana Smith