Regional Sea Level Changes and Coastal Impacts

10.07 - 14.07.2017  
New York, USA

The Regional Sea-Level Changes and Coastal Impacts conference will be held in New York, USA, from 10-14 July 2017.


Columbia University
Lerner Hall
2920 Broadway
New York City, NY 10027


The conference is a five-day event with a leading theme guiding the activities of each day. The structure of the conference will consist of plenary sessions followed by extensive poster sessions. In the evenings, there will be "think-tanks" focusing on new science frontiers and activities.

Conference aims

The conference will serve as a basis for a new assessment of the state-of-the-art on regional sea-level research that will be an important input to the next IPCC assessment. A major outcome from the conference will therefore be an evaluation of the current state of sea-level science, an outline of future research requirements for improving our understanding of sea level rise and variability, and a description of the observational requirements (both experimental and sustained systematic observations).

The outcomes will be published in multiple forms, including an agenda-setting peer-reviewed paper specifying the information on coastal seal-level change required by coastal communities for adaptation and decision making purposes.

In detail the conference will:
I. Identify the key factors contributing to past, present and future regional sea-level rise and variability.
II. Organize a systematic attack on the error budget of these factors.
III. Identify stakeholder needs for sea-level information for coastal planning and management purposes.
IV. Define the requirements for new and augmented research, technical development and observations consistent with the above.


8:00-9:00 Registration
9:00-12:30 Opening Session
12:30-14:00 Lunch
14:00-18:00 Paleo & Cryosphere
18:00-21:00 Reception

9:00-12:30 Paleo & Cryosphere
12:30-14:00 Lunch
14:00-18:00 Contemporary Sea-Level Change

9:00-12:30 Coastal Zone
12:30-14:00 Lunch
14:00-18:00 Coastal Zone
18:00-21:00 Public and Outreach Event

9:00-12:30 Contemporary Sea-Level Change
12:30-14:00 Lunch
14:00-18:00 Projections
18:00-21:00 Conference Dinner

9:00-11:00 Projections
11:00-14:00 Closing Session
14:00 Optional Field Trip


Sea-level change is already impacting coastal communities globally and will continue to do so. To meet urgent societal needs for useful information on sea level, the World Climate Research Program (WCRP) has established the theme "Regional Sea-Level Change and Coastal Impacts", as one of its cross-cutting "Grand Challenge" (GC) science questions.

The GC Sea Level has designed and developed an integrated interdisciplinary program on sea-level research reaching from the global to the regional and coastal scales. In particular, the program aims for close interaction with relevant coastal stakeholders to make sure that the results effectively support impact and adaptation efforts and wider coastal zone development and management.

The WCRP, jointly with the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO (IOC), is organizing an international conference on sea level research that will address the existing challenges in describing and predicting regional sea level changes, and in quantifying the intrinsic uncertainties. It follows 11 years after the first WCRP sea level conference (Paris, 2006), and three years after the last Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). It will provide a comprehensive summary of the state of worldwide climate-related large scale sea level research.


New date! Abstract submission deadline extended to 28 February.

Submit abstracts here.

Further information

Access the second conference flyer here (pdf).

Go to the conference website.


Future Earth Coasts bursaries

Future Earth Coasts is offering two bursaries for Early Career/Global South participants to attend this conference. Each bursary will have a value of up to 2000 Euros to support a contribution to the Coastal Zone sessions on Day 3 of the conference.

Contributions for this session should be submitted as an abstract and will go through a selection process by the conference organizers for acceptance as part of the session either as an oral presentation or poster (see here).

Abstracts must be submitted by 15 February. Award of a bursary will be done jointly between the Coastal Zone session organizers and Future Earth Coasts. Please send a copy of your abstract to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. If you require any further information, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.