Our approach

A brief history

For over a decade, the Degrees Initiative has led the world in building the capacity of developing countries to evaluate solar radiation modification (SRM). We do this through outreach events that bring new people to the conversation, supporting and funding research that builds expertise and an evidence base, and activities that build an international community of experts.

"SRM is a very controversial issue, with global implications. The Degrees Initiative is a most important initiative in the field today."

Michel Jarraud

Former Head of the World Meteorological Organization

"The Global South needs more people who truly understand the global and regional impacts of SRM, and this takes time."

Pornampai (Ping-Ping) Narenpitak

Degrees funded scientist - National Science and Technology Development Agency, Thailand

Prof. Govindasamy Bala

"A transparent and inclusive conversation on SRM needs to take place at the international level.”

Govindasamy Bala

Degrees-funded scientist and research collaborator - Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru

"This is the best opportunity for the Global South at least to be part of the conversation with regional research produced by regional scientists"

Inés Camilloni​

Degrees-funded scientist and research collaborator - University of Buenos Aires, Argentina

Who we work with

Degrees is a global community of researchers, expert collaborators, and partners from around the world. We work closely with a range of partners, including academic institutions, other NGOs, and local organisations, and volunteers to achieve our mission and uphold our values. Our work is deeply informed by the Global South science community; in 2018, we set up our first research fund following feedback in outreach workshops that scientists wanted to do their own research but lacked the funds to do so. Now our work is driven and informed by our growing community of Degrees-funded scientists and other world-experts on SRM who volunteer their time as Research Collaborators–a crucial part of Degrees’ capacity-building process.

How we work

SRM is a very controversial topic and we believe that organisations working in this space should commit to high standards of integrity, transparency and good governance. To adhere to these principles:

  • We are transparent about our funders, and our vision, mission and values.
  • Our independent Board of Trustees includes a balance of North and South voices. 
  • Strategic decisions are informed by expert advisors in the Global South and North. 
  • Research funding decisions are made by an independent grants committee following an open call and peer review. 
  • Research teams have full academic freedom. 
  • We are impartial on SRM: on whether it should ever be used and how it should be governed. But we are strong supporters of safe and informative SRM research. 

Impact

Degrees leads the world in building capacity to evaluate SRM in the Global South 
  • The Degrees Modelling Fund is the world’s largest SRM research programme, with over $1.8 million research grants awarded, having supported 150+ researchers across 28 projects in 22 developing countries and emerging economies.
  • Degrees supported the first SRM research projects in South America, the Caribbean, Africa, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Small Island Developing States, and Least Developed Countries. 
  • In partnership with local organisations, we have hosted  30 outreach workshops, attended by over 1,000 climate experts around the world.
  • Degrees has been commended by editors of Nature and the US National Academy of Sciences, and was selected as a Scale-Up project of the Paris Peace Forum.

Degrees researchers leading the way

Degrees researchers are also changing the face of SRM research, with 22 papers published on SRM research in peer-reviewed journals, and a further 36 in the pipeline (as of the end of 2023). Research has been on a wide range of topics, including drought, dust storms, the spread of malaria, and food production. 20 Degrees-funded researchers are also IPCC authors, including a number of sitting as IPCC Vice-Chairs. They have also presented their work at high-level conferences and events, and have contributed to key international reports, including for UNEP and UNESCO.

Looking ahead

After a decade of leading the world in building capacity for SRM research in the Global South, 2023 Degrees convened at the Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center to identify new workstreams to accelerate our mission. These workstreams will be shaped by 20 climate experts worldwide to deepen our impact, expand our reach and community, and drive transformative change in SRM research.

Ultimately, Degrees’ aim is to lower barriers for research and for research programmes to become well established with further deepening links between experts and regional policymakers, with developing country engagement with SRM having the momentum to be self-sustaining.

Media coverage

Our work has been covered in international outlets including the BBC World Service, Carbon Brief, Climate Home News, the Guardian, the Huffington Post, the Japan Times, MIT Technology Review, Le MondeNature, Reuters, and SciDevNet.

"If our long-term ambitions for the Degrees Initiative are achieved, our mission will be complete with international collaboration becoming the norm for SRM research."

Andy Parker

CEO, the Degrees Initiative

DMF Achievements

First SRM study in South Africa

And first SRM study in Africa

Learn moreJanuary 2020

First SRM study in Benin

The first SRM study in a Least Developed Country (LDC)

Learn moreJune 2020

First SRM study in Iran

Also first SRM study in Middle East region

Learn more15th June 2020

First SRM research paper from Jamaica

First SRM study in Caribbean and Small Island Developing State

Learn more11th March 2021

First paper on SRM from Indonesia

First SRM study in Southeast Asia

Learn more19 September 2021

First SRM study in Argentina

And first SRM study in Latin America region.

Learn More26 April 2022

History of the DMF

The Degrees Modelling Fund  (DMF) was launched in 2018 as the DECIMALS Fund (Developing  Country Impacts Modelling Analysis for SRM). In 2022, DECIMALS was renamed the Degrees Modelling Fund. 

The DMF is a partnership between The Degrees Initiative and TWAS, The World Academy of Sciences. The DMF would not have been possible without their expert guidance and hard work.

Join the Global conversation

Click below to join our growing community

Sign up