The South Asia regional office of Future Earth was inaugurated at the Divecha Centre for Climate Change (DCCC), Indian Institute for Science (IISc), Bengaluru on 9 July 2016, along with a national brainstorming meeting on Future Earth. This was attended by nearly 70 invited experts across multiple disciplines—weather, climate, monsoon, aerosols and anthropogenic emissions, polar and cryosphere research, modelling, hydrology, agriculture, remote sensing, oceanography and so on—in line with the basic framework of the program. The purpose of this meeting was to: take stock of the activities being pursued under different science departments on topics relevant to Future Earth; chalk out the way ahead, considering the overall guiding principles of the international programme and the topics of regional relevance; suggest ways to synthesize the information emanating from these efforts; and generate knowledge needed for societies (regional and global) to address the challenges posed by climate change for sustenance and to adaptation.
The inaugural and meeting was addressed by Dr. Anurag Kumar, Former Director, IISc, Shri A. S. Kiran Kumar, Former Secretary, Department of Space, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Prof. V. K. Gaur, Former Secretary, Department of Ocean Development (currently Ministry of Earth Sciences), Dr. Harsh Gupta, Former Secretary, Department of Ocean Development (currently Ministry of Earth Sciences). Sessions throughout the meeting were chaired by Prof. J. Srinivasan, Former Chair, DCCC, IISc, Dr M. Rajeevan, Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences, Prof. R. S. Nanjundiah, Chair, Centre for Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, IISc, and Dr. K. Krishnamoorthy, Chair, Future Earth National Committee for India.
The invited guests and chairs had expressed their views and suggestions during the brainstorming session and the following conclusions were made, regarding the role of the regional office:
(a) Activities of the office should be interdisciplinary in nature.
(b) The mandate of the office is to integrate available information from national laboratories in India as well as in SAARC countries, ministries and departments and academic institutions and develop specific strategies to tackle and face consequences of climate change.
(c) Promotion of the implementation of specific activities of Future Earth over this region.
(d) Ensuring that regional priorities are made part of the strategic development of Future Earth.
(e) Operating as the primary point of contact between interested researchers, research institutions, funding agencies and other interested parties, and Future Earth.
(f) Providing up-to-date and timely information about the objectives and organization of Future Earth, actively reaching out to researchers and stakeholders over this region.