Simulation Protocols


The ISIMIP2b scenarios are designed to elicit the contribution of climate change to impacts arising from low-emissions climate-change scenarios. Pre-industrial control runs are included to facilitate statistical comparison with a no-climate-change case.

The ISIMIP2b protocol covers several new sectors, including tropical cyclones, temperature-related mortality and lakes.

The scientific rationale for the scenario design is documented in a GMD discussions paper by Frieler, et al.

Please read the data and co-authorship policy and register your model for ISIMIP2b here.

Below you will always find the latest version of the simulation protocol. Changes compared to previous versions will be recorded in the change log.

  • Important information about preparing your simulation files can be found here.
  • Information about which input data are available can be found here.

  • Basic analysis of global-mean-temperature levels in the ISIMIP2b climate data can be found here.

ISIMIP2b Protocol Changes

Nov. 8, 2018

The ISIMIP2b protocol for the energy sector has been temporarily removed from the website, since it is outdated. It will be replaced by an updated version soon.

Nov. 5, 2018

The naming conventions in the agriculture, biomes, forest and biodiversity (and water, if agricultural variables are supplied) sector have been changed. Additional specifiers (e.g., for crops, irrigation settings, plant functional types) are now to be separated by hyphens, as described in Table 26. Therefore, variable names must consist of only o..

Nov. 5, 2018

Planting guidelines (Table 20) for forest sites have been adjusted after consultation with site PIs, for consistency with the PROFOUND data paper. The older planting guidelines remain valid for older/existing runs.

Nov. 5, 2018

In the caption of Table 6, there was an error that is not corrected. Originally, future projections accounting for changes in socio-economic drivers were attributed to Group 2, when, in fact, they belong to Group 3.


The simulation protocol contains all information necessary to run climate-impacts simulations consistent with other models participating in the current ISIMIP simulation round, ISIMIP2a. Here you will find the protocol for ISIMIP2a. Click on the link below for information about the ISIMIP Fast Track.

Information about accessing and transferring using the DKRZ server

Important information about preparing your simulation files

The protocol is divided into 7 chapters: chapters 1-6 contain important information for modellers in all sectors. Chapter 7 provides sector-specific instructions (can be downloaded separately below).  For any queries, get in touch.

See the table below for an up-to-date list of protocol changes.

ISIMIP2a Protocol Changes

March 5, 2018

The file-naming conventions for output file has been updated to include a tag to indicate the target climate data set for the bias correction. The standard file name now has the form: <modelname>_<obs>_<bias-correction><clim_scenario>­_<socio-econ-scenario>_<sens-scenarios>_<variable>_<region>_&..

March 5, 2018

To maintain consistency with other sectors, the "man" and "nat" scenarios for forest sectors have been  renamed to "nosoc" and "varsoc" respectively.

June 13, 2017

References for the four observational climate data sets for ISIMIP2a have been added to table 3.

May 22, 2017

Changes include updates to the management schedules (table 26) and correction of the definition of output variables.

ISIMIP Fast Track

FT protocol image

Complete Protocol

Last updated on 16 October, 2018.

See here for more information about the ISIMIP Fast Track.

ISIMIP-FT Protocol Changes

Oct. 16, 2018

In the file naming conventions, the qualifier for the spatial scale ("region") was missing before and has now been included. Additionally, some outdated email addresses and URLs have been updated.

March 5, 2018

The definition of the agriculture-sector output variables pirrww and pirruse have been updated to match those in the ISIMIP2b protocol.pirrww: Irrigation water withdrawal, assuming unlimited fresh-water availability and no water losses during conveyance and application. While the latter assumption has no implications for crop growth, it helps to ..