A new strategic plan is being drafted in 2019 to guide NCAR from 2020 through 2024, with extensive input from staff and community stakeholders.

The overarching theme for our new plan is how we can deliver science with impact. Our vision is to focus on predictive Earth system science: providing community leadership, transforming the field, and providing societal value. It is vitally important that any strategic plan for NCAR be collaborative in nature and that we continue to seek input from our stakeholders. We outline the input process and the plan development timeline below.

Steering Committee

Formed in April 2019, the NCAR Strategic Plan Steering Committee (SPSC) represents scientific and technical diversity, out of the box thinking and an NCAR-wide perspective. The committee is responsible for gathering and synthesizing input into the plan from across all of NCAR, integrating input from external stakeholders with that from NCAR to develop the conceptual elements of the plan, and drafting the plan.


Daniel Marsh
Rebecca Morss


Jeff de La Beaujardiere
Ethan Gutmann
Dave Hart
Matthew Hayman
Rebecca Hornbrook
AJ Lauer
Matthew Long
Anna Malanushenko
Keith Maull
Astrid Maute
Jadwiga "Yaga" Richter
Rosimar Rios-Berrios
Sarah Tessendorf
Holger Vömel
Curtis Walker 

Input from staff

Staff input was gathered from April 22 through May 24, 2019. The steering committee thanks everyone for taking the time to participate. Please see the timeline, below, for next steps.

Staff input was gathered via six methods:

  • Web form (anonymous) 
  • Constituent input groups convened by the SPSC (invitations were sent to all NCAR staff via Google Calendar.
  • Bulletin boards (anonymous)
    • ML: cafeteria entrance
    • FL2: cafeteria atrium
    • CG1: 3rd floor lounge area
  • Self-organized input groups
  • Open Mic Town Halls:
    • Tue 5/14, 1:00-2:00 p.m. ML Main Seminar Room;
    • Mon 5/20, 1:00-2:00 p.m. FL2 Large Auditorium
  • Email to the committee co-chairs

Six questions were asked:

Looking forward over the next five years and beyond...

  1. What are the most important high-level goals for NCAR?
  2. What are the most important and/or unique roles of NCAR as a national center?
  3. What are the most compelling scientific questions for NCAR to address and why?
  4. What strengths can we build on, and what must we change, to achieve these goals?
  5. What does success look like for NCAR, and how can we measure that success?
  6. Anything else that you would like to see included in the new strategic plan that is not covered above?

Input from the atmospheric & related Earth system science community

We held breakout sessions focused on the plan and the role of our member institutions during the October 2018 Members Meeting.

We held town halls for the broad community at the December 2018 meeting of the American Geophysical Union and the January 2019 meeting of the American Meteorological Society. A high-level presentation was followed by Q&A and an online survey was used to gather feedback after the meetings.

Questions, concerns, comments

If you have additional questions, concerns, or thoughts, please get in touch via NCAR2024@ucar.edu.


as of 07/17/19

Activity Begun Status

NCAR Executive Committee (EC) develops high-level concepts



Feedback on high-level concept from UCAR Board, Members & President's Advisory Committee on University Relations (PACUR)



Feedback on high-level concept: AGU Town Hall



Feedback on high-level concept: AMS Town Hall



NCAR EC Retreat to refine high-level concepts and develop guidance/makeup of Steering Committee (SPSC)



New NCAR Director presents development process



SPSC kickoff meeting



Call for input from staff



Open mic town halls during staff input period

14 May, 1:00pm, ML MSR & 20 May, 1:00pm, FL2 Lg Aud


SPSC synthesizes input, drafts outline with goals & objectives



Review by Board, PACUR. and NSF



SPSC incorporates reviews, fleshes out first full draft


in progress

Discussions of first draft with staff and external stakeholders; reviews by internal & external leadership


in progress

NCAR staff update town hall

25 July


Release of first draft to NCAR staff and external reviewers

27 Aug


Second draft



Review by Board, PACUR, Members, & NSF



Revision, final editing & production