Headline: Forums: Science, Policy, Society

"Forums: Science, Policy, Society" is a cross-sectional research area with a particular focus on supporting the IASS' mission by facilitating dialogue between science, policy-makers, and civil society actors. This research area addresses topics of strategic importance, such as the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement, as well as providing other research areas at the IASS with forums to build connectivity across science, policymaking and society. The dialogues fostered through these instruments are integral to the mission of the IASS. All of the research groups associated with this area perform research of a transformative nature, with their findings contributing to research across the Institute and flowing from the IASS into processes of transformation towards sustainability. Their findings are based on research focussed squarely on transformations, complementing research conducted across the other five areas in line with the Institute's mission. Forums: Science, Policy, Society works closely with IASS Fellows and this cooperation contributes to the area's strategic goals. The research area touches explicitly on the various levels at which transformations towards sustainability occur: global, national, local. The research area has ties to all of the major actors contributing to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in Germany and abroad. It is also building a strategic network of relevant partners within science and the political sphere that are working on climate issues at the intersection of climate and air quality. "Forums: Science, Policy, Society" is an instrument for strategic cooperation, both within science and with actors in politics and society. Currently comprising the research groups "Science Platform Sustainability 2030", "International Dialogues for Pathways to Sustainable Futures" as well as "Climate Action in National and International Processes" and "Sustainability Platform Brandenburg", this area integrates key actors from the fields of sustainability and climate research and practice into the Institute's activities.

Dossiers

IASS Research on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Dossier

By endorsing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the international community signalled its continued commitment to dealing with global challenges as a collective. The Agenda provides a blueprint for reconciling economic growth with social justice and environmental sustainability.

Science Platform

Making the German Sustainability Strategy a Compass for Sustainable Development

How effective is Germany's sustainability policy and how could the Sustainable Development Strategy better support it? The Science Platform Sustainability 2030 (SPS2030) has grappled with these questions since it was established in 2017. At its first annual conference in Berlin (5–6 December, Umweltforum), the platform presented its initial response in a wide-ranging reflection paper.

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Invitation for registration

Platform for Sustainability in Brandenburg launches Website

The Platform for Sustainability in Brandenburg provides a forum for discussion and networking opportunities for sustainable development initiatives from across the state. Following the launch of its new website – https://plattform-bb.de/ – regional initiatives, organisations and institutions are invited to register with the platform and explore opportunities to collaborate for a more sustainable Brandenburg.

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IASS Policy Brief

Climate Protection and Clean Air: An Integrated Approach

From 23 – 25 September 2019, heads of government from around the world will convene at the United Nations’ General Assembly to discuss efforts to advance climate action and global sustainable development. The summit aims to boost national ambitions to achieve the objectives of the Paris Agreement and will review the implementation of measures relating to the Sustainable Development Goals. The relationship between air pollution and climate change plays an important role in this context, and is the subject of a new IASS Policy Brief titled “A Practical Approach to Integrating Climate and Air Quality Policy”.

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Potsdam Summer School 2019

Connecting Science and Society

How can scientific insights be integrated more effectively into society? This year’s Potsdam Summer School (PSS) will explore the role of science communication from 20 to 29 August. In what ways and via which channels can topics related to sustainability and global change be effectively communicated?

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IASS Discussion Paper

How Science Has Become a Driving Force for Sustainability

Science has already given us a much better understanding of what we must do in order to leave our world intact for future generations. However, that understanding has had little impact on our collective behaviour. At the first Global Sustainability Strategy Forum in March 2019, 17 prominent scientists looked at how science can help bring about the changes we need to see. They have now published their findings in an IASS Discussion Paper.

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Interview with EU expert

“The SDGs have become ‘Chefsache’ in many European countries”

The European Union (EU) is currently finding its bearings after the recent elections, and the jostling for top positions is in full swing. Regardless of the outcome, sustainability is likely to play a stronger role in future EU policy. Now for the first time, the EU will report to the UN High-Level Political Forum on progress in implementing the SDGs. Senior Fellow Ingeborg Niestroy has closely monitored the EU’s sustainability policy over the last twenty years and just presented the IASS Science Platform Sustainability 2030 at this 'HLPF'. In the following interview, she talks about a study she led on the sustainability strategies of the EU member states.

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Call for Researchers

Scientific Online Consultation on the German Sustainability Strategy

From 31 May 2019, researchers of all disciplines are invited to contribute to the further development of Germany’s Sustainable Development Strategy – the overarching framework for sustainability policy in Germany. For this purpose, the Science Platform Sustainability 2030 is organising the online consultation “A Question of Science: Putting Germany’s Sustainability Strategy to the Test”.

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“Make sustainability a key principle of the European Union’s new strategic agenda!”

“Sustainability must become a key principle of the European Union’s new strategic agenda,” argues Patrizia Nanz, co-chair of the Science Platform Sustainability 2030, in the run-up to the meeting of the European Council in Romania on 9 May 2019. The meeting will bring together the heads of state and government of the EU Member States to discuss the Union’s future political direction and priorities.

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Governing in Times of Digitalisation and the Crisis of Democracy: Policy Brief Points the Way to Innovative Governance

Digitalisation is changing not only how we live and work, but also how governments operate and make laws. Synthetic biology and new genetic engineering methods allow for targeted interventions in our bodies, quality of life and private sphere, while also transforming the way we think about society and politics. The erstwhile peace project Europe is mired in crisis, and people are losing faith in democracy and the state. There is an urgent need for innovations to open up new avenues for politics and administration. A new IASS Policy Brief makes a number of recommendations for governing in the twenty-first century.

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Science Platform

“Greater cooperation is needed across science, civil society, and policymaking to advance sustainability”

Greater cooperation is needed to advance sustainability, urges Patrizia Nanz, co-chair of the Science Platform Sustainability 2030. Her statement supports a central finding of the “2018 Peer Review on the German Sustainability Strategy”, which was launched in Berlin at the 18th Annual Conference of the Council for Sustainable Development on 4 June.

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Blog Posts

SDGs

Implementing the Sustainable Development Goals in Africa: A Long Way to Go

As 2019 comes to an end and the world prepares for COP 25, one can wonder about the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in different continents, and especially in Africa. Based in Kigali, Rwanda, the SDGs Center for Africa organized its major SDG conference in June 2019, where it launched its landmark “SDG Index and Dashboard Report” 3.5 years after the UN adopted its 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The report paints a mixed picture of progress towards achieving the SDGs across the African continent.

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K3 Kongress

Outrage vs. Empathy – a Culture Clash in Climate Communication?

“We need to start by telling people they are awesome.” This was one of the central messages from climate communications expert George Marshall in his opening keynote at K3: Kongress zu Klimawandel Kommunikation und Gesellschaft, the German-language congress on climate communication that took place this September in Karlsruhe. As in: we have to accept people for who they are, listen to them, and frame climate action in terms that align with their values.

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