Future Work

At the conclusion of an assessment cycle, the IPCC generally reflects on the report preparation process and draws lessons to inform consideration of the IPCC's future work programmes and processes.

At its 43rd Session in April 2016, the IPCC decided to prepare proposals for aligning the work of the IPCC during its Seventh Assessment Report (AR7) cycle with the needs of the global stocktake under the Paris Agreement. At its 46th Session in September 2017, the Panel established a Task Group on the Alignment of the IPCC Cycles and the Global Stocktake. At the 47th Session in March 2018, the Panel adopted the Task Group’s terms of reference and renamed it Task Group on the Organization of the Future Work of the IPCC in Light of the Global Stocktake.

Sixth Assessment Cycle

The IPCC is preparing an unprecedented number of reports in the current Sixth Assessment Cycle. At its 43rd Session in April 2016, the IPCC decided to produce three Special Reports, a Methodology Report and the Sixth Assessment Report. The first of these special reports, Global Warming of 1.5ºC was finalized in October 2018. The Special Report on Climate Change and Land  was finalized in August 2019 and the Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate in September 2019. The Methodology Report, entitled 2019 Refinement to the 2006 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories, was delivered in May 2019.

The Working Group I contribution to the Sixth Assessment Report was finalized in August 2021.  The Working Group II and III contributions will be finalized in February and March 2022 respectively while the Synthesis Report in September 2022. 

The IPCC also decided, at the 43rd Session, to include a Special Report on climate change and cities in the AR7 cycle. To stimulate scientific reports and peer-reviewed publications on this subject it decided to consider working with academia, urban practitioners and relevant scientific bodies and agencies to organize an international scientific conference on climate change and cities early in the AR6 cycle. This conference was held in Edmonton, Canada, in March 2018.

The Sixth Assessment Report

In addition, more than 720 experts from 90 countries have started preparing the Sixth Assessment Report (AR6). The three Working Groups’ contributions to the main report will be released in 2021 and the Synthesis Report in April 2022. The outlines of the Working Group contributions to AR6 were agreed at the 46th session of the IPCC in Montreal in September 2017 and can be found here:

Outline of the Working Group I contribution to the IPCC AR6 Outline of the Working Group II contribution to the IPCC AR6 Outline of the Working Group III contribution to the IPCC AR6

The full lists of Coordinating Lead Authors, Lead Authors and Review Editors are available here:

Working Group I Working Group II Working Group III