Since the impacts of climate change will last for many years, adaptation to this phenomenon should be prioritized in urban management plans. Although Tehran, the capital of Iran, has been subject to a variety of climate change impacts in recent years, appropriate adaptation measures to address them are yet to be taken. This study primarily aims to categorize the barriers to climate change adaptation in Tehran and analyze the way they interact with each other. The study was done in three steps: first, the focus group discussion (FGD) method was used to identify the barriers; next, the survey and the structural equation modeling (SEM) were used to validate the barriers, identify their importance, and examine their possible inter-relationships; and finally, the interpretive structural modeling (ISM) was applied to categorize and visualize the relationships between the barriers. Results show that barriers related to the ‘structure and culture of research’, ‘laws and regulations’, and ‘planning’ belong to the cluster of independent barriers and are of greater significance. The ‘social’ barrier and barriers related to ‘resources and resource management’ are identified as dependent barriers and are of lesser importance. Barriers related to ‘governance’, ‘awareness’, ‘education and knowledge’, ‘communication and interaction’, and ‘economy’ are identified at the intermediate cluster. The findings of this study can provide planners and decision makers with invaluable insights as to how to develop strategies for climate change adaptation in Tehran. Despite the scope of the study being confined to Tehran, its implications go far beyond this metropolis.
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