February 12, 2018
How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition
The Kopernikus projects present their research findings on the German Energiewende at the world’s largest academic conference in Austin
Germany’s Energiewende seeks to transform the country’s largely fossil-based energy system into one based on renewable energy sources and ap-proaching carbon neutrality. Researchers from the Kopernikus projects “Energy Transition Navigation System | ENavi” and “Synchronized and energy adaptive production technology for flexible alignment of industrial processes towards a fluctuating energy supply | SynErgie” will describe how such a broad societal transformation of the energy system can succeed at the world’s largest academic conference, the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Austin, Texas.
December 1, 2017
Crisis and Futures of Democracy
A discussion with Charles Taylor and Patrizia Nanz on 11 December
Modern Western democracy is undergoing a significant crisis. Public spheres and political communities are highly fractured. Right-wing populism is on the rise. Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor and German political scientist Patrizia Nanz will discuss the past, present, and future of the democratic subject, the 'Homo Politicus', and the shivering normative foundations of modern democracies. What institutional and social scenarios can be envisioned for the future?
November 29, 2017
In his latest book, risk expert Ortwin Renn examines what drives people to populism
How powerful is fear and what effect does it have on our society? These questions are at the heart of a recently published book by the environmental and technical sociologist Ortwin Renn. In "Zeit der Verunsicherung" (Anxious Times), the Scientific Director at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) probes the causes and effects, as well as the perception and handling of fears in our society.
November 8, 2017
IASS Website Relaunch
The new institute website boasts a modern, user-friendly design
The Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) in Potsdam has completely overhauled and relaunched its website. Thanks to its new user-friendly and responsive design, the website is now optimised for mobile use. It makes greater use of images than the former website and is targeted not only at researchers but also at policymakers, the media, the business community, and civil society as well as interested members of the general public.
November 3, 2017
The IASS at the World Climate Conference in Bonn
Experts from the institute to provide information about climate protection, marine conservation, and the energy transition
From 6 to 17 November, delegates at the 23rd United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP23) will be working on the rulebook for the implementation of the Paris climate goals. A team of experts from the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) is at the conference to encourage discussion on the following central questions: What role does ocean conservation play on the way to achieving the Paris goals? How do climate protection and sustainable development go hand in hand? What risks and potential benefits would climate engineering bring? And can a broad societal dialogue advance the energy transition?
October 27, 2017
The Coal Rush and Beyond
A Workshop on Coal Contestation and Advocacy for Energy Transition
At a two-day workshop at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) in Potsdam, international experts will explore issues relating to the energy transition on November 13-14. Researchers from Sydney, Australia, will present “The Coal Rush and Beyond”, an international research project focusing on opposition to the expansion of coal mining in India, Germany, and Australia. The research makes connections between local struggles against coal mining on the Liverpool Plains (Australia), in the central Indian state of Chhattisgarh, and the Lausitz (Germany) and the global politics of climate change. Talks on the second day will examine the prospects for a decisive shift in energy policy, away from reliance on coal to various forms of renewable energy, and the social and political dynamics surrounding such a shift.
October 10, 2017
Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin
The CEC17 provides a forum for debate on the study, risks, and governance of targeted interventions in the climate system
On Monday evening the Climate Engineering Conference (CEC17) was opened in Berlin by Mark Lawrence, Scientific Director at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS). The international conference explores the potentials and risks of possible measures to intervene in the climate system. Over four days, experts from academia, political institutions, and civil society are engaging in intensive debates about the study, risks, and governance of geoengineering.
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.
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 (su-re.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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
April 14, 2016
Media invitation to the conference: Jump-starting the SDGs in Germany
March 31, 2016
Patrizia Nanz Joins IASS as Scientific Director – New Leadership Team Takes the Helm
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
September 14, 2015
"Facing Natural Hazards" - the Second International Potsdam Summer School Will Start on 14 September 2015
July 15, 2015
Climate Engineering not an Option for Near-term Climate Policy
April 23, 2015
We Need Fertile Soils for Sustainable Development and the Mitigation of Climate Change
April 20, 2015
How Can We Avoid the Risk of Unsustainable Sustainable Development Goals?
April 15, 2015
Are the Sustainable Development Goals Sustainable?
March 12, 2015
Third Global Soil Week 2015: Soil. The Substance of Transformation
January 8, 2015
The Soil Atlas 2015, with facts and figures on agriculture, land and soils has been published
March 11, 2014
Long-distance transport of green power: First successful testing of a 20 kA superconducting cable
March 22, 2013
Towards better protection of the High Seas