Headline: Governance

Establishing enabling environments is critical to putting societies on a pathway towards sustainable development. Politicians, citizens, businesses, and civil society organizations all play a role in the negotiations leading to sustainable transformations.

The IASS studies and supports governance processes that aim to deliver broad improvements in the quality of life and to ensure that planetary resources are used sustainably. Researchers at the IASS analyse existing governance frameworks such as the Paris Climate Change Agreement and study the impacts of their implementation across the dimensions of ecological, social and economic sustainability. This research includes analyses of the dynamics at play within the UNFCCC climate regime following the adoption of the Paris Agreement and of the social impacts of processes of large-scale structural change such as the decarbonisation of the energy system.

Research conducted at the IASS also considers the respective roles of various forms of participation – including citizen participation, participative management and protest – in shaping governance frameworks and contributing to the resolution of conflicts. What impact does participation have on decision-making processes? And, vice versa: How do political structures, processes, ideas and efforts to foster societal change affect different forms and areas of participation?

IASS researchers also contribute to transnational policymaking processes pertaining to the Arctic Region and sustainable ocean and soil governance by providing science-based policy advice and analyses developed in dialogue with stakeholders and other actors. These reciprocal learning processes also provide an important space for researchers to reflect on the role of science in transformations towards sustainability.


Futurisation of Politics

The decisions that we make today in relation to issues such as the storage of radioactive waste, climate change, or coal mining can affect people, societies, and ecosystems far into the future.

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Governance and Participation

Can protests and citizen participation drive transformations? The Governance and Participation project investigates diverse forms of political and economic participation within the context of socio-ecological transformations.

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Climate Action in National and International Processes (ClimAct)

The ClimAct project is designed to build a bridge between the scientific expertise of the IASS and climate action within national and international political processes, with particular emphasis on the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) climate negotiations and the activities of the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC).

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Mobilising the Multiple Opportunities of Renewable Energies

The global transition to renewable sources of energy is in full swing. Complementing climate action, the social and economic opportunities presented by this transformation have spurred the growth of renewable energy generation in many countries. Together with many of Germany’s partner countries in the area of energy and climate policy, the project consortium led by the IASS is carrying out country-specific analyses of the social and economic potentials of an ambitious climate protection programme based on renewable energies. To exploit these potentials, policy instruments are being developed with partners from policy institutions, academia, business and civil society.

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IASS Research on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Dossier

An important crossroads: at the end of September the UN member states voted on a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in order to initiate a global transformation towards sustainability. The Sustainable Development Goals are more extensive than their precursor, the eight Millennium Development Goals, which have often been criticised for not giving enough attention to the ecological dimensions of sustainability, or for considering it only in isolation. The primary goal remains the eradication of poverty.


Meeting with State Government

A Future Commission for Brandenburg

The Governor of Brandenburg and members of the state government came to the IASS on 12 December to discuss energy policy and climate protection. Together with the directors of the IASS and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), they explored the idea of a Future Commission to ensure that Brandenburg’s energy transition is socially responsible and economically sustainable.

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