Being relatively new, different definitions and interpretations exist for the concept of climate services.

As defined in the European Roadmap for Climate Services document, a broad meaning of the climate services concept covers the transformation of climate-related data — together with other relevant information — into customised products such as projections, forecasts, information, trends, economic analysis, assessments (including technology assessment), counselling on best practices, development and evaluation of solutions and any other service in relation to climate that may be of use for the society at large.

As such, these services include data, information and knowledge that support adaptation, mitigation and disaster risk management (DRM).

Co-development and co-production is considered key for producing climate services that are really tailored to user needs and that are actually useful and usable to assist decision-making. Climate services ensure that the best available climate science is effectively communicated to the users to develop and evaluate adaptation strategies.