Articles & Papers

Articles and papers from GCF-related projects and researchers.


The Myth of  the Rational Man

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by Ulf Dahlsten

All political philosophy including economic theory, and not just our modern thinking, has been more or less deductively leaning on perceptions of what it is to be human and of human behaviour. Philosophers expect people to respond in one way or the other to the different elements of their reasoned, often idealised, systems and the governance that is implied, and the effectiveness of any such system is dependent on the possibility to predict the human responses.  Earlier generations of political scientists and philosophers have, however, by necessity had, explicitly or implicitly, to base their reasoning on an intuitive understanding of the human nature and on simple models; the human brain is very complex and the ability to scientifically study it has been very limited until now.

November 2011



Warum zwei Grad? (German)

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by Carlo Jaeger and Julia Jaeger

Der Klimagipfel von Kopenhagen im Dezember 2009 markiert einen Wendepunkt in der globalen Klimapolitik. Die Hoffnung, zügig zu einem Abkommen zu kommen, das die weltweiten Emissionen von Treibhausgasen in absehbarer Zeit wirksam reduzieren könnte, hat sich zerschlagen. Doch das Elend von Kopenhagen hat auch sein Gutes: Die Erwartungen an die internationale Klimadiplomatie können gesenkt werden, sodass die Vielzahl an kompetenten und engagierten Regierungsvertretern, die es sehr wohl gibt, lösbare Aufgaben anpacken können; gleichzeitig können andere Zugänge zu einer globalen Emissionsreduktion gesucht werden, die weitere Akteure ins Spiel bringen.

August 2010


Full publication:

Aus Politik und Zeitgeschichte: Klimawandel (32-33/2010 / August 9, 2010)



Three Views of Two Degrees

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by Carlo Jaeger and Julia Jaeger

Limiting global warming to 2° Celsius above global mean temperature in pre-industrial times has become a widely debated possible goal for climate policy. It has been supported by many scientists, the European Union, the G8 and a whole series of national governments. However, some claim that it is way too stringent, others that it is not sufficient to avoid major climate risks. We show how the limit emerged out of a marginal remark in an early paper about climate policy and distinguish three possible views of it.

Version of December 10, 2009



Beschäftigung, Innovation und Klimaschutz (German)

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by Carlo Jaeger

Der Klimawandel ist eine der großen globalen Herausforderungen der Gegenwart. In Deutschland wird jedoch eine wirksame Klimapolitik durch die wirtschaftliche Wachstumsschwäche und die damit verbundene Arbeitslosigkeit blockiert. Solange dieses Problem besteht, bleibt der Staat in wesentlichen Bereichen handlungsunfähig. Diese Lähmung verhindert auch weitgehend, dass die EU als Gestaltungsinstrument im globalen Rahmen genutzt werden könnte. Leider ist nicht zu erwarten, dass die gegenwärtige Beschäftigungs- und Klimapolitik zur Lösung des Problems genügen wird.

June 2006



Emissions Pathways to Avoid Dangerous Climate Change:
A Trans-Atlantic View

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by Carlo Jaeger and Michael Oppenheimer

The objective of this paper is to examine the feasibility of emissions pathways that would eventually stabilize atmospheric concentrations so as to avoid dangerous interference with the climate system. This stabilization goal is defined by the UN framework convention on climate change (UNFCCC), a piece of international law that has been ratified by most nations, including the US and the nations making up the EU. We discuss the specific options open to the US and the EU in working towards global emissions pathways to avoid dangerous climate change. On the basis of global assumptions about long term global concentration and temperature goals, therefore, we take a bilateral perspective: What are reasonable objectives for the US and the EU in view of this global problem?

June 2005



ECF Position Paper

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The European Climate Forum (ECF) is a mechanism to bring together representatives of different parties concerned with the climate problem: the coal, oil and gas industries, companies engaged in renewable energy technologies or the manufacture of energy-efficient products, major energy users (including transportation), insurance and finance sectors, environmental NGOs, and scientific experts investigating climate change and options for sustainable development.




What is Dangerous Climate Change?

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Initial Results of a Symposium on Key Vulnerable Regions, Climate Change and Article II of the UNFCCC, Buenos Aires.

December 2004



Climate Change: Combining Mitigation and Adaptation

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by Carlo Jaeger

in: David Michel (ed.) Climate Policy for the 21st Century. Meeting the long-term Challenge of Global Warming. Johns Hopkins University, Washington D.C.




Climate Change and Paths to Sustainability:
The Role of Science-Based Stakeholder Dialogues

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by M. Welp, K. Hasselmann and C. C. Jaeger

The prospect of a major change in the earth's climate as a consequence of greenhouse gas emissions and other human actions presents one of the most demanding challenges facing humankind in the decades to come. How to cope with this problem, which will affect all regions of the world, remains an unsolved problem. It is clear that significant reductions of greenhouse gas emissions will be needed. This will require the concerted action of many players in society in order to bring about the necessary changes in technological infrastructure, human behaviour and lifestyles which will be crucial for successful mitigation and adaptation strategies.

February 2003



Second Conference on Financial Networks and Sustainability

This three-day conference (January 17-19, 2018), organized by FINEXUS (Center for Financial...


GCF @ COP23 in Bonn: discussing green growth and how to turn climate risks into opportunities (copy 1)

The Global Climate Forum e.V., the University of Zurich and IIASA, together with partners from...

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An Open Invitation to Participate in the GREEN-WIN Survey

A guiding element of the GREEN WIN Project is the Global Dialogue, which aims to produce shared...


GCF and the DOLFINS Consortium replied to the EU consultation on Sustainable Finance

The EU High-level expert group (HLEG) on Sustainable Finance has invited all citizens to provide...

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