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Special Issue "Changes in Heatwaves – Past, Present and Future"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Climate Change and Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 May 2019

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Sarah Perkins-Kirkpatrick

Climate Change Research Centre (CCRC), UNSW Australia, Sydney NSW 2052, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: heatwaves; climate extremes; internal climate variability; detection and attribution; observations; climate projections; climate models; health impacts of heatwaves; mechanisims of heatwaves

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Heatwaves are a special case of extreme temperature events, defined as prolonged periods of excessive heat. It is clear that increasing global temperatures due to anthropogenic climate change have, and will continue to, force an increase in the intensity, frequency of heatwaves. However, heatwaves are complex events for many reasons. Firstly, they are characterised by multiple measurements, inclusive of intensity, frequency, duration, spatial extent and seasonal timing. Secondly, there is a plethora of ways in which to measure heatwaves, subjectively governed by the interests of those undertaking a given study. Thirdly, while the general physical mechanisms that drive heatwaves are broadly similar, there is devil in the detail at regional and local scales. Following from this, uncertainties exist among physical climate models on the relative contribution of certain physical mechanisms in heatwave manifestation, and particularly how they may change in the future. Lastly, as a community, we have not even begun to scratch the surface on how changes in heatwaves will alter the wide range of systems they impact, and the overall risk impose. Such systems include, but are not limited to human health, ecosystem structure and diversity and public infrastructure.

While the climate and impacts communities have made some important discoveries on heatwaves and their changes over the last decade, we still have a lot more research to do. Therefore, I invite you to contribute to this exciting and progressing field, and continue the dialogue on how heatwaves are changing, why this is so, and who or what will be most affected.

Dr. Sarah Perkins-Kirkpatrick
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • Regional and local heatwaves
  • Small and large-scale interactions
  • Observed events
  • Future projections
  • Measuring heatwaves
  • Addressing uncertainty in future projections
  • Understanding impacts of heatwaves
  • Physical mechanisms of heatwaves
  • Risk and exposure
  • Attribution to natural and anthropogenic processes

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle Mining Social Media to Identify Heat Waves
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(5), 762; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16050762
Received: 6 February 2019 / Revised: 25 February 2019 / Accepted: 25 February 2019 / Published: 2 March 2019
PDF Full-text (3164 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Heat waves are one of the deadliest of natural hazards and their frequency and intensity will likely increase as the climate continues to warm. A challenge in studying these phenomena is the lack of a universally accepted quantitative definition that captures both temperature [...] Read more.
Heat waves are one of the deadliest of natural hazards and their frequency and intensity will likely increase as the climate continues to warm. A challenge in studying these phenomena is the lack of a universally accepted quantitative definition that captures both temperature anomalies and associated mortality. We test the hypothesis that social media mining can be used to identify heat wave mortality. Applying the approach to India, we find that the number of heat-related tweets correlates with heat-related mortality much better than traditional climate-based indicators, especially at larger scales, which identify many heat wave days that do not lead to excess mortality. We conclude that social media based heat wave identification can complement climatic data and can be used to: (1) study heat wave impacts at large scales or in developing countries, where mortality data are difficult to obtain and uncertain, and (2) to track dangerous heat wave events in real time. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Changes in Heatwaves – Past, Present and Future)

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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health EISSN 1660-4601 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
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