Workshop on Public Weather Services for RAI Tropical

Workshop on Public Weather Services for RAI Tropical Cyclone Committee
This workshop was kindly hosted by Meteo-France from 9 to 13 November immediately
following the second training course on tropical cyclone forecasting for the RAI Tropical Cyclone
Committee for the SouthWest Indian Ocean.
The relatively short workshop concentrated on few areas of public weather services, which
were deemed to be of special relevance to the participants. During the first day of the workshop an
outline of the objectives of the workshop highlighting the important issues that were the subject of
subsequent presentations was provided to the participants. The participants were then invited to
make presentations about their own national public weather services programmes and practices.
This session was especially beneficial in bringing out areas where special emphasis was needed
during the workshop.
Since a major part of the work of the NMSs in service delivery concentrates on coordination
with the users of services such as the media and disaster management agencies, these subjects
were given special attention. Representatives of local media and disaster management authorities
from La Réunion spoke to the participants on the arrangements which were in place for their
collaboration with the NMS and expressed their views as users of the information provided by the
Meteorological Service. Participants were especially interested in these presentations which were
followed by lively discussions.
Topics for the rest of the workshop concentrated on other issues of core importance to the
PWS Programme such as working in a changing environment and how to adapt to economic,
political, and technological changes; how to develop a vision and plan and user focus as regards
PWS; how to raise visibility of the NMS through promoting its products; education and training of the
NMS staff as well as raising awareness among users of the products and services; and the
importance of verification and service evaluation.
As an increasingly important media of dissemination of information to the users the Internet
was given its own session which preceded a general discussion on how to improve national PWS
Programmes within the given constraints and opportunities.