The 1990s witnessed unprecedented mobilisation of scientific assessments and models of climate change for consumption by policymakers, led by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. As a result, debate over whether humans are influencing the global climate has moved on to what the impacts will be and how people should respond. The new challenge is to extend ownership and absorption into common knowledge of this body of evidence. Scientists and policymakers in OECD countries cannot expect other parts of the world to want to import unaltered their understanding of climate change issues and solutions. Fresh efforts are needed now to refer climate change to local or regional agendas and perceptions, especially in developing countries, concludes a recent University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST) study, part of the Global Environmental Change initiative.