Climate Data Interface Designer – Call for Tender

Deadline: 24 November 2021
Project: EU H2020 funded PROVIDE Project
Contract type: Subcontract
Period: December 2021 – August 2024
Contract value: Quote not exceeding the total budget of EUR 80,000 (excl. the VAT)
Contact: and .

Apply here

Introduction to the PROVIDE project

The PROVIDE project, funded by the European Commission under the funding scheme Horizon 2020, intends to deliver highly innovative climate services that incorporate comprehensive information on climate impacts from the global to the regional and urban level for a large variety of greenhouse gas emission pathways, and thereby support climate adaptation. The PROVIDE consortium – coordinated by Humboldt-University (Berlin) – is constituted of climate scientists who are leading experts in the field of climate mitigation, impacts and adaptation, as well as of stakeholder engagement experts, SMEs specialized in climate services provision including high-resolution climate risk modelling, and urban planners.

Activities and deliverables

I. Overview of Activities:

The recruited expert(s) will be centrally contributing to the development of the PROVIDE climate service Dashboard and specifically responsible for developing the front-end component of the dashboard. They will also collaborate with Climate Analytics’ staff members to contribute to the development of the back-end component. As such, they will be in charge of:

  • Designing interactive visualisations allowing online exploration of the scientific data developed as part of the PROVIDE project. The visualisations should be in line with the visual identities of both the PROVIDE project and Climate Analytics, and achieve the following goals:
    1. present the key concepts of the PROVIDE project (such as, but not restricted to, overshoot scenarios, impact chain, and non-linear impact systems) in an understandable way for various previously identified target groups;
    2. convey the key scientific findings coming out of the data developed as part of the project;
  • Setting up the web-based infrastructure that will display the designed interactive visualisations, as well as provide access to the underlying data, which will allow PROVIDE partners to update and make changes independently

This work will rely on a close collaboration with scientists from the PROVIDE consortium and especially from Climate Analytics and Humboldt University, who will coordinate the Dashboard development with all involved staff members across organisations and future users (effectively acting as product owners/managers), but also be in charge of overseeing the provision of data to be visualised on the Dashboard. The recruited expert(s) will regularly attend progress meetings with consortium scientists to co-conceptualise the Dashboard and exchange feedback on intermediary versions. They will then be in charge of addressing feedback from PROVIDE scientists as well as future users of the Dashboard (also referred to as stakeholders) in order to improve its usability and understandability.

II. Main deliverables

The deliverables under this tender are tied to the project deliverables of the PROVIDE project (see Annex 1) and need to be strictly observed. Partial invoicing is possible for interim deliverables, but full imbursement only follows the submission of final deliverables.

  1. A mock-up version representing the full concept of the Dashboard and its Regional Module by the end of February 2022 (halfway through Phase 1 of the PROVIDE project, see Fig. 2 in Annex 1). This mock-up version can be non-clickable and take the form of wireframes. It should illustrate various possible user journeys through the Dashboard which will have been agreed upon with the PROVIDE consortium scientists. An intermediary mock-up version should already be prepared for the end of December 2021 or mid-January 2021, in order for the PROVIDE consortium to collect feedback from stakeholders and internally. As an indication, about 5-10 % of the total work is expected to be delivered in this first step.
  2. A version 0 of the Dashboard providing climate impact information for a few variables with global coverage by the end of August 2022 (end of Phase 1 of the PROVIDE project). Its technical infrastructure will enable exploring projections of these few variables (including temperature) for a first set of up to a few hundreds of greenhouse gas emission pathways. The work to prepare this version should be organized in phases so that feedback on intermediary versions can be collected among the consortium and stakeholders, then implemented. As an indication, about 15-20 % of the total work is expected to be delivered in this 2nd
  3. A version 1 of the Dashboard providing climate and sectoral impact information as well as a first version of the Regional Module by the end of November 2023 (end of Phase 2 of the PROVIDE project). It will enable exploration of projections for many climate and sectoral impact variables and a larger number of greenhouse gas emissions pathways, with the option to choose an expert mode starting with user-defined thresholds and reversing the impact chain. The Regional Module will in particular include the results of urban-scale heat stress modelling. The work to prepare this version should be organized in phases so that feedback on intermediary versions can be collected among the consortium and stakeholders, then implemented. As an indication, about 50 % of the total work is expected to be delivered in this 3rd
  4. The final version of the Dashboard providing climate and sectoral impact information including reversibility assessments for non-linear impact systems, as well as the Overshoot Proofing Module by the end of May 2024 (end of Phase 3 of the PROVIDE project). The work to prepare this version should be organized in phases so that feedback on intermediary versions can be collected among the consortium and stakeholders, then implemented. As an indication, about 20 % of the total work is expected to be delivered in this 4th
  5. After the final version of the Dashboard has been delivered, a small amount of work is to be expected so as to fix remaining bugs and make slight adjustments based on user feedback. As an indication, about 5 % of the total work is expected to be delivered in this 5th

Profile of contractor

  • Advanced Degree (B.A./BSc or M.A./MSc)
  • Experience with data communication and dashboard design
  • Experience working with climate scenario and climate impact data
  • Experience with building web-based applications for data visualisation
  • Experience with working with Python or Julia for data wrangling as well as JavaScript (and modern web frameworks like Vue or Svelte) for implementation of the Dashboard
  • Experience with working in close collaboration with research institutions in climate science
  • Ability to work in English and in an international environment

Tender Submission

The final cut-off for submission is the 24th November 2021.

The submission should include, but is not limited to:

  • A short description of the capacity of the company, CVs of design team
  • List of past projects of relevance that demonstrate competence, ideally including the corresponding links
  • Number of staff members and/or contractors that will be employed on the project (including project management and design staff)
  • Design Software used and Data Handling preferences
  • Brief elaboration on the design tasks identified and approach anticipated
  • Quote (total figure)
    Quote not exceeding the total budget of EUR 80,000 (incl. the VAT paid by the contractors).

The work will be organized in various phases in line with the timing of the PROVIDE project (see Annex 1), in between which the recruited expert(s) may not need to interact with the PROVIDE consortium, except if there are emergencies they would only be able to take care of (i.e., bugs to be fixed), or non-urgent reasonable requests (i.e., clarification questions). During the periods when the recruited expert(s) will need to work on the PROVIDE Dashboard, day-to-day exchanges will be organized via the slack workspace of Climate Analytics or Zoom (or equivalent).

Annex 1: Additional information on the PROVIDE dashboard

Overview of the dashboard

  • A central outcome of the project will be the PROVIDE climate service Dashboard, a web-based climate service tool offering user-friendly access to information on climate impacts resulting from various greenhouse gas emission scenarios. This will be ensured through interactive visualisations allowing exploration of the scientific data and results developed under the project, which will cover the following aspects, among others:
  • A large number of climate mitigation scenarios allowing to limit global warming to below 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, as well as scenarios that exceed this amount but may be followed by a decrease in Global Mean Temperature (“overshoot scenarios”);
    Projections of various climate and sectoral indicators with a global coverage as a result of the displayed mitigation scenarios. The list of sectors to be covered includes: agriculture, freshwater availability, terrestrial ecosystems, marine ecosystems, glaciers, macro-economy;
  • Higher-resolution projections for a reduced list of climate sectoral indicators over a focus set of 4 Iconic Regions and about 150 cities across the world. These will be visualised within a dedicated Regional Module of the Dashboard;
  • A methodological module explaining how to use make use of the information provided on the Dashboard to test the appropriateness of existing climate adaptation policies to avert against projected risks of specific interest to the Dashboard users. This so-called ‘Overshoot Proofing Module’ of the Dashboard will synthesise the outcomes of case studies conducted on the focus set of Iconic Regions and Iconic Cities included in the PROVIDE project.

The PROVIDE Climate Service Dashboard will be open access, and will offer the possibility to download the visualisations it will provide as well as the data underlying them. Climate Analytics gGmbH is in charge of developing the PROVIDE Climate Service Dashboard, for which it is seeking support from data interface design experts.

schematic_representation_of_the_climate_service_dashboard_and_its_regional_and_overshoot_proofing_modules.png

Example of users that will visit the PROVIDE Climate Service Dashboard

User 1: Global stakeholders (policy, business, civil society, general public)

Objective: Explore global to regional risks and impacts of climate change under current NDC pathways vs. Paris Agreement limits and overshoot implications

Starting from the emission pathway implied by current policies and pledges, regional and sectorial risks are explored. This risk assessment includes potential high-warming outcomes, irreversible impacts and long-term risks and is multi-sectorial in nature, including e.g. long-term risks for glacier loss and to terrestrial and marine biodiversity up to 2500. Current pathway impacts are then contrasted with impacts under Paris Agreement compatible pathways. The implications of multiple pathway characteristics and carbon dioxide removal scenarios can be assessed. This user group may also include climate litigation experts that are also represented in the stakeholder advisory board.

User 2: Regional stakeholder from iconic region (policy, business, civil society, general public)

Objective: Explore risks and impacts of climate change in iconic region and city under current NDC pathways vs. Paris Agreement limits and overshoot implications

This user group’s broad interests are similar to user 1, but the Regional Module for the Iconic Regions provides for a specific entry point. It includes high-resolution climate information for the iconic cities and additional analysis on the iconic region level.

User 3: Spatial planners from Iconic Regions

Objective: Overshoot proofing of adaptation planning

A urban/spatial planner in an iconic region makes use of the Overshoot Proofing Module to assess the robustness of adaptation plans. This starts with the identification of a critical system threshold (for example related to extreme heat and urban infrastructure, extreme runoff and flood prevention or to hydropower production) that, if exceeded, would require a transformational redesign of the system at much higher costs. An acceptable probability of exceeding that threshold can also be defined. Based on the ‘reversed impact chain’ setup, the Dashboard can provide risks of overshooting the identified threshold for different emission scenario characteristics over the course of the 21st century. Integrating this risk into the adaptation planning following the PROVIDE overshoot proofing approach then allows to design a more robust adaptation action incorporating full climate risks.
Requirements of the Dashboard

The PROVIDE Climate Service Dashboard should offer two modes:

A classic mode

Largely inspired from other existing web-based climate services tools such as the Climate Impact Explorer(developed by Climate Analytics), it offers the possibility to explore projected impacts for a climate or sectoral indicator, a geographical unit (continent, country, province, city) and an emissions scenario selected by the user.

The projected impacts are visualised under the form of time series plots as well as maps.

Additionally, this mode should show some figures illustrating how the level of projected impacts varies as a function of key characteristics of global mitigation scenarios (for example the level of global emissions in 2030 or the date at which the world would reach net-zero emissions).

The user should also be able to interact with the graphs to a certain extent. One possibility is that, when hovering over the time series plot, the displayed median impacts as well as their upper and lower bounds appear. Another possibility is that one is able to click on specific points on the time series plot in order to visualise the maps corresponding to impacts at that specific point in time. Similar linkages between the other displayed graphs should also be considered to facilitate data exploration by the user.

An Expert mode, or ‘Scenario building’ mode

This new approach first offers the user to select a region/country/province/city and a climate or sectoral indicator of interest. It also asks them to set a maximal value that the selected indicator should not exceed over the selected geographical unit. This maximal value is meant to reflect critical thresholds of relevance for a system they are interested in that, if exceeded, would require a transformational redesign of the system at much higher costs. Potential examples include cumulative rainfall amount during extreme precipitation events (relevant for example for the design of urban flood protection measures), or duration of a high-intensity heatwave (relevant to design public health measures to address consequences of heat stress).

Time series plot then visualise with which certainty the user-selected local risk threshold would be exceeded or respected depending on various mitigation scenarios. The user will then be able to further specify the level of risks that the user would be willing to engage with by:

Indicating the level of certainty with which the specified impact threshold should be respected
Indicating the level of risk associated with the deployment of Carbon Dioxide Removal techniques in some scenarios that seem appropriate to them
Indicating the level of risk associated with the deployment of Solar Management techniques in some scenarios that seem appropriate to them

These additional selections will be guided by some background information provided in plain language on the tackled topics (especially Carbon Dioxide Removal and Solar Radiation Management). Additionally, this mode should also show some figures illustrating how the level of projected impacts varies as a function of key characteristics of global mitigation scenarios (for example the level of global emissions in 2030 or the date at which the world would reach net-zero emissions).

Additional requirements

Both user modes should offer the possibility to download the visualisations as well as the underlying data. It is extremely likely that content will need to be adjusted regularly during as well as after the project, therefore this needs to be accounted for in the offer. The implementation of a Content Management System can therefore be desirable, but alternative solutions which allow flexible and user-friendly content updating can also be considered. As a general rule, the code of the Dashboard should be made accessible to Climate Analytics in order to enable adjustments beyond the project duration.

Additionally, the successful offer shall meet the following technical requirements:

  • It shall work on modern Internet browsers including Firefox, Chrome and Microsoft Edge
  • A mobile version should be developed, which could be simpler (with less functionalities) depending on technicalities and user needs
  • To facilitate accessibility, modern web standards and best practices shall be followed. * * * This requires in particular:
    1. appropriate sizes for web pages;
    2. the possibility to operate essential components using the keyboard;
    3. a screen reader friendly page structure
    4. a colourblind-friendly design

Dashboard development in the project context

Dashboard development will be organised in various phases in line with the timing of the PROVIDE project (see Fig. 2), in between which the recruited expert(s) may not need to interact with the PROVIDE consortium, except if there are emergencies they would only be able to take care of (i.e., bugs to be fixed), or non-urgent reasonable requests (i.e., clarification questions). During the periods when the recruited expert(s) will need to work on the PROVIDE Dashboard, day-to-day exchanges will be organized via the slack workspace of Climate Analytics or Zoom (or equivalent).

provide_project_phases_and_dashboard_versions.png

Conditions

Deadline: 24 November 2021
Project: EU H2020 funded PROVIDE Project
Contract type: Subcontract
Period: December 2021 – August 2024
Contract value: EUR 80,000
Contact: and .

Apply here