ISIMIP data access

For ISIMIP participants

If you are an active ISIMIP participant (i.e., if you are contributing simulations following the ISIMIP protocol), please log in to the Modellers' Dashboard and see the information provided there.

For external (non-participant) users


Much of the ISIMIP simulation and input data is available publicly for download from the ISIMIP Earth System Grid Federation (ESGF) server. Detailed instructions on accessing data from the ESGF can be found here.

We suggest you to first give a look at the ESGF server. Its user-friendly platform can help you quickly get an overview of the data available and its filters will help you navigate through them. If you don't find a data set listed within our Input or Output data tables, please write us to and we will help you get access to it.


A specialized rsync service is available via PIK which grants read-only access to some of the input data. rsync is an open source file transfer program for Unix systems providing a very fast method for bringing remote files into sync. Windows ports of rsync are available from several internet sites. Please take a look at this page to get instructions for two working solutions on a Microsoft Windows machine.

rsync hostname:
rsync password: Request current password by writing to This password should not be shared and will be updated on a regular basis.

To receive a list of remotely available files and sub folders use the following command:



The following example will download all 2m temperature (tas) files from the ISIMIP2b bias-corrected land-only IPSL-CM5A-LR input data set to the current local folder. Replace the single dot at the end of the line with a different destination folder if wanted. The -u option will check for already present files on your end and will only transfer newer or updated files.

RSYNC_PASSWORD='PASSWORD' rsync -auvL*historical*.nc4 .

A few notes

  • You will not gain any improvements in download speeds or amount of data being transmitted by using the -z option since all NetCDF data are already internally compressed.
  • Make sure your machine and institution's network allows for outgoing connections on port 873.

Specific Information for each simulation round


Here you can see how the input data for ISIMIP2b are organised on the DKRZ server (access restricted to active ISIMIP members who contribute simulations following the ISIMIP protocols). Note that if you don't require data over oceans, you can make use of the smaller, 'landonly' climate data files.

Here you can find an overview of the input data available. More detailed information can be found in the ISIMIP2b protocol (tables 1-7) and the input-data table.


Before starting to download the ISIMIP2a input data, please read these important instructions about versioning!

Notes on the folder Structure

  • For ISIMIP2a there is an additional InputData folder EvalData, which contains data sets for model evaluation.
  • The climate input data is divided into HistObs (observational climate input data sets for historic validation runs) and FastTrackGCMs (Fast-Track climate input data for catch-up runs (ISIMIP2a) for sectors not in the ISIMIP Fast Track).

ISIMIP Fast Track

All input (and output) Fast Track data is available via the ESGF node Please find all information on how to obtain the ISIMIP Fast Track data in the Data Archive section.

There are two versions of the climate input data from the ISIMIP Fast Track:

  • The first version was used to force impact models in the ISIMIP Fast Track phase and should only be used for the ISIMIP2 catch-up experiments for sectors that were already part of the Fast Track (global water, global biomes, agriculture, vector-borne diseases & coastal systems). It was published under the ISIMIP Fast Track ESGF project.
  • For all other purposes, i.e. future runs for new sectors and modeling exercises with no relation to ISIMIP, version 2 published under the ISIMIP2a ESGF project should be used. This corrected and extended version (denoted as ISIe in Hempel et al. 2013) overcomes several limitations in adjusting the daily variability.