2A.6 Regional services in a research context: USDA Climate Hubs in the USDA Agricultural Research Service

Monday, 26 June 2017: 11:45 AM
Mt. Mitchell (Crowne Plaza Tennis and Golf Resort)
David P. Brown, USDA, El Reno, OK; and E. Elias, S. Ostoja, D. Peck, and D. Todey

Ten USDA Climate Hubs were created in 2014 to develop and deliver science-based, region-specific information and technologies to better enable agricultural decision-making and management. Of these ten Hubs, half are administered by USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS), an agency with historical excellence in science but less so in services. The ARS Hubs therefore represent an innovative opportunity for ARS to enhance its mission through the delivery of user-inspired science at regional scales. The focus of this study is the line connecting science to services within ARS, with an emphasis in three areas: (a) understanding science priorities within the agency and their translation to regional scales; (b) understanding regional user information needs and the capabilities and mechanisms available to respond to those needs; and (c) highlighting success stories from each of the five ARS Hubs in connecting science to users through services delivery. Opportunities and recommendations to continue strengthening the science-to-services linkage are also addressed, including greater incorporation of both physical and social science perspectives and the role of key partner organizations in the regional climate services enterprise.
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