Global climate models (GCMs) are essential for understanding future changes in droughts but it remains unclear how well these models simulate droughts.

This study evaluated GCMs for common drought metrics during the past 55 years. It showed that different models can produce very different simulations of drought, depending on the type of drought and metric analysed.

The researchers found that model differences relate strongly to how the models represent the land surface and atmospheric processes. Our study points to a need to improve GCMs for droughts to reduce uncertainties in future projections.