↓ Skip to main content

Global non-linear effect of temperature on economic production

Overview of attention for article published in Nature, October 2015
Altmetric Badge

About this Attention Score

  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (99th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (98th percentile)

Mentioned by

93 news outlets
28 blogs
657 tweeters
3 Facebook pages
3 Google+ users
1 Redditor

Readers on

359 Mendeley
6 CiteULike
Global non-linear effect of temperature on economic production
Published in
Nature, October 2015
DOI 10.1038/nature15725
Pubmed ID

Marshall Burke, Solomon M. Hsiang, Edward Miguel, Burke, Marshall, Hsiang, Solomon M, Miguel, Edward


Growing evidence demonstrates that climatic conditions can have a profound impact on the functioning of modern human societies, but effects on economic activity appear inconsistent. Fundamental productive elements of modern economies, such as workers and crops, exhibit highly non-linear responses to local temperature even in wealthy countries. In contrast, aggregate macroeconomic productivity of entire wealthy countries is reported not to respond to temperature, while poor countries respond only linearly. Resolving this conflict between micro and macro observations is critical to understanding the role of wealth in coupled human-natural systems and to anticipating the global impact of climate change. Here we unify these seemingly contradictory results by accounting for non-linearity at the macro scale. We show that overall economic productivity is non-linear in temperature for all countries, with productivity peaking at an annual average temperature of 13 °C and declining strongly at higher temperatures. The relationship is globally generalizable, unchanged since 1960, and apparent for agricultural and non-agricultural activity in both rich and poor countries. These results provide the first evidence that economic activity in all regions is coupled to the global climate and establish a new empirical foundation for modelling economic loss in response to climate change, with important implications. If future adaptation mimics past adaptation, unmitigated warming is expected to reshape the global economy by reducing average global incomes roughly 23% by 2100 and widening global income inequality, relative to scenarios without climate change. In contrast to prior estimates, expected global losses are approximately linear in global mean temperature, with median losses many times larger than leading models indicate.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 657 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 359 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
United States 11 3%
Germany 5 1%
France 4 1%
Switzerland 3 <1%
United Kingdom 2 <1%
Chile 1 <1%
Israel 1 <1%
Italy 1 <1%
Brazil 1 <1%
Other 10 3%
Unknown 320 89%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Ph. D. Student 122 34%
Researcher 71 20%
Student > Master 48 13%
Student > Bachelor 32 9%
Student > Doctoral Student 23 6%
Other 63 18%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Economics, Econometrics and Finance 90 25%
Environmental Science 79 22%
Earth and Planetary Sciences 53 15%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 44 12%
Engineering 22 6%
Other 71 20%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 1452. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 22 June 2017.
All research outputs
of 7,945,514 outputs
Outputs from Nature
of 46,773 outputs
Outputs of similar age
of 242,436 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Nature
of 1,042 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 7,945,514 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 99th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 46,773 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 72.4. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 242,436 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 1,042 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 98% of its contemporaries.