Monsoons have always been a focus of great interest to WCRP, and this was further enhanced with the efforts of its core projects CLIVAR and GEWEX under a joint Monsoons Panel. The importance of monsoon prediction for socio-economic applications was recognized quite early but understanding its variability across a wide range of time and space scales and providing reliable predictions remains a challenge even today, despite many scientific and technological advances. India’s socio-economic fabric is tightly intertwined with monsoons, motivating concerted efforts to understand and predict monsoon behaviour. Recognizing the urgent need for improving monsoon prediction capabilities in the country in a systematic and timely manner, the Government of India had launched an ambitious and well-resourced research programme on Mission mode, called the Monsoon Mission. The first phase of the mission was implemented during 2012-2017 and the second phase that started in 2017 is underway. A unique feature of India’s Monsoon Mission is that, though fully funded from national resources, it has supported a significant number of projects led by international groups.
Recognizing the broader interest of the Monsoon Mission activities to the WCRP community, the CLIVAR/GEWEX Monsoons Panel has coordinated a special issue of CLIVAR Exchanges on India’s Monsoon Mission, with Dr M.N. Rajeevan as the Guest Editor. This issue showcases 12 articles highlighting the results achieved so far under Monsoon Mission