Press Releases

September 7, 2017

Climate Engineering: A Tool for Climate Protection?

International experts will debate controversial interventions in the Earth System at the Climate Engineering Conference 2017 in October

Is climate engineering necessary in order to protect the climate and successfully implement the Paris Agreement? What are the potential risks and side effects of climate engineering, and who would govern its use? International experts from the fields of science, policymaking, and civil society will meet in Berlin on 9 – 12 October at the world’s largest conference on this topic – Climate Engineering Conference 2017 (CEC17) – to explore the complex ethical, political and scientific issues raised by climate engineering approaches.

Press Invitation (PDF)


August 30, 2017

New UNIDO report explores potential of Industry 4.0 to accelerate transition towards sustainable energies

A new report launched today by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) looks into the opportunities and challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, also referred to as Industry 4.0, to accelerate the transition towards sustainable energy. The report, which was produced in collaboration with the German Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) and the Indonesian think tank Sustainability & Resilience.Co (, also provides key recommendations for future policies.

Press Release (PDF)


August 28, 2017

Potsdam Summer School Explores the Future of Cities

International exchange on the sustainability of human environments

The rapid pace of change around the world is presenting humankind and human environments with tremendous challenges. What solutions and strategies can we employ to future-proof our cities in the age of climate change? Experts from 30 countries will meet to discuss these issues with leading sustainability researchers at the 2017 Potsdam Summer School on 4 – 13 September. Their findings will be presented to the public in a memorandum on 13 September.

Press Release (PDF)


June 27, 2017

How the G20 Can Advance the Global Energy Transition

IASS Researchers Call for a Halt to Investment in Fossil Infrastructure and an Ambitious Expansion of Renewables

Hosted by Germany, this year’s G20 Summit will take place in Hamburg on 7 and 8 July. Alongside the prevention of financial crises, climate and energy policy will also be on the agenda of the world’s twenty leading industrialised and emerging economies. The first steps the G20 has taken towards a sustainable energy supply fall far short of the fundamental transformation of infrastructure that is required. But what would a sustainable energy agenda actually entail? In cooperation with the Think 20 (T20) Network, researchers at the IASS have developed recommendations for the future energy policy of the G20 in several policy briefs.

Press Briefing (PDF)


June 7, 2017

Regional Alliances for the Sustainable Use of the Oceans

Sustainability Researchers Present Marine Conservation Report at UN Ocean Conference and Table Recommendations for UN Negotiations

On June 6, researchers from the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) and their colleagues from partner institutes presented a new report at the first ever United Nations’ Ocean Conference in New York. The report examines the role of regional marine conservation in the implementation of the global sustainable development goals for oceans. With reference to case studies, it shows how coastal states can protect marine ecosystems more effectively and use them sustainably by forming regional alliances. Together with international decision-makers and marine conservation experts, the researchers also submitted recommendations for the sustainable use of the oceans, which will feed into the UN negotiations.

Press Release (PDF)

May 24, 2017

IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York

Marine conservation takes centre stage at conference on 5-9 June

On 5–9 June, experts on ocean governance and sustainability from around the world will meet at the United Nations’ Ocean Conference in New York. The conference’s aim of advancing the implementation of the global sustainable development goal for the oceans dovetails with a major focus of research at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) in Potsdam. Researchers from the Ocean Governance project at the IASS will attend the conference, where they will host three events on ocean sustainability in cooperation with partners from policymaking, academia, and civil society.

Press Mailing (PDF)


May 11, 2017

Reducing black carbon to protect health and the climate

IASS Director Mark Lawrence presents the current state of knowledge

At the preparatory meeting for the UN Climate Conference in Bonn on May 15, IASS Director and climate scientist Mark Lawrence will give a short talk on the latest research on black carbon and discuss its effects on health, the climate, and development. The fine carbon particles in the air threaten not only human health but also the climate. Conversely, by tackling black carbon, we can kill two birds with one stone and protect both health and the climate. This is why the negative effects of black carbon are increasingly in the spotlight. How can policymakers and researchers make progress towards reducing it?

Press Mailing (PDF)

May 10, 2017

The IASS has a New German Name

Potsdam institute emphasises the transformative quality of its studies

Researchers at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) investigate pathways to sustainable development. The institute works on important global and regional future issues and has established strong ties with both national and international partners. With its new German name, the institute aims to connect with its German and regional audience more directly.

Press Release (PDF)


May 9, 2017

“Science Platform Sustainability 2030” Launched in Germany

New science platform to support the Sustainable Development Goals of the German Federal Government and the 2030 Agenda

Research is crucial to sustainable development: a new science platform will support efforts to implement the German Sustainable Development Strategy and the Sustainable Development Goals of the global 2030 Agenda. The Science Platform Sustainability 2030 was presented to the public at the 13th Forum for Sustainability (FONA) on 9 May. Hosted by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the conference was opened by the Federal Minister of Education and Research, Johanna Wanka, and the Head of the Federal Chancellery, Federal Minister Peter Altmaier. The platform’s operations will be jointly organised by the research networks Sustainable Development Solutions Network Germany (SDSN Germany) and the German Committee Future Earth (DKN Future Earth), together with the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) in Potsdam.

Press Release (PDF)


March 8, 2017

Broad Public Support for Climate Protection and Renewables in the UK, Germany, France and Norway

Four-country comparative study on climate and energy policy in Europe in the run-up to important elections

A clear majority of citizens is in favour of renewables, most agree that “climate change is already with us”, and public confidence in political actors is highest in Germany – these are the main findings of a survey of citizens on energy and climate policy in Germany, France, the UK and Norway.

Press Release (PDF)


February 22, 2017

Press Invitation - How do citizens in Europe view climate change? What energy policies do they want?
Presentation in Berlin of key results of a survey carried out in Germany and three other countries

How worried are people in Germany, the UK, France and Norway about climate change? What level of trust do the architects of the energy transition such as the federal government, the EU Commission and energy concerns enjoy? To what extent is the climate research consensus on anthropogenic climate change being called into question? What energy sources do Europeans prefer: coal, nuclear or renewables? Do they support the energy transition?

Press Release (PDF)


December 1, 2016

Scientists take ‘blue-action’ to help society cope with the impacts of dramatic Arctic climate changes

While the Arctic faces rapid warming and less sea ice currently covers the Arctic Ocean than ever before at this time of the year, an international partnership launches a major project to improve our detailed understanding of the processes and impacts of this changing climate and to construct better long-term forecast systems for the increasingly extreme weather of the Arctic and the wider northern hemisphere.

Press Release (PDF)


November 11, 2016

IASS Sees Climate and Sustainability Goals at Risk

In a joint statement, the Scientific Directors of the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) in Potsdam, Mark Lawrence, Patrizia Nanz and Ortwin Renn expressed their concern that the election of Donald Trump as the next president of the United States will seriously endanger both international efforts to protect the climate and the implementation of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

Press Release (PDF)


October 25, 2016

IASS Presents Research Programme for 2017–2021
The energy transition, climate policy, and the implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals form the focus of future research

Scientific directors Mark Lawrence, Patrizia Nanz, and Ortwin Renn presented the research programme covering the funding period from 1.1.2017 through to 30.6.2021 at the General Assembly of the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) held yesterday in Potsdam.

Press Release (PDF)


August 29,2016

Dealing with Climate Change Impacts – the Potsdam Summer School starts with young talents from all over the world

From global sea level rise to extreme events like floods or droughts – even with ambitious climate mitigation, some impacts of climate change will be felt within this century. How to avoid the unmanageable and manage the unavoidable will be the focus of the Potsdam Summer School from September 5-14, bringing together more than 40 early-career scientists and young professionals from all around the globe.

Press Release (PDF)


April 14, 2016

Media invitation to the conference: Jump-starting the SDGs in Germany

Press Release (PDF)


March 31, 2016

Patrizia Nanz Joins IASS as Scientific Director – New Leadership Team Takes the Helm

Press Release (PDF)


November 16, 2015

"Crack it! Energy from a Fossil Fuel without carbon dioxide" - IASS and KIT develop a technology to produce hydrogen from methane without carbon dioxide emissions

Press Release (PDF)


September 14, 2015

"Facing Natural Hazards" - the Second International Potsdam Summer School Will Start on 14 September 2015

Press Release (PDF)


July 15, 2015

Climate Engineering not an Option for Near-term Climate Policy

Press Release (PDF)


April 23, 2015

We Need Fertile Soils for Sustainable Development and the Mitigation of Climate Change

Press Release (PDF)


April 20, 2015

How Can We Avoid the Risk of Unsustainable Sustainable Development Goals?

Press Release (PDF)


April 15, 2015

Are the Sustainable Development Goals Sustainable?

Press Release (PDF)


March 12, 2015

Third Global Soil Week 2015: Soil. The Substance of Transformation

Press Release (PDF)


January 8, 2015

The Soil Atlas 2015, with facts and figures on agriculture, land and soils has been published

Press Release (PDF)


March 11, 2014

Long-distance transport of green power: First successful testing of a 20 kA superconducting cable

Press Release (PDF)


March 22, 2013

Towards better protection of the High Seas

Press Release (PDF)