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Home > Research > Research areas > Climate change and development strategies

Climate change and development strategies

by Arancha Sánchez - published on , updated on

Climate change mitigation

Research in CIRED on mitigation of climate change aims to analyze ex-post existing mitigation policies (European market of emission allowances, support policies for renewable energy, for energy demand management, for capture and geological storage of carbon dioxide...), or to assess ex-ante the announced or planned policies (international climate architecture, "green" tax reforms...). The objective is to study the effectiveness of these policies, their costs, their articulation with other development objectives (growth, employment, equity ...) as well as social issues and controversies they raise.

This research focuses on different scales from the city scale, to the global scale, through the national or regional level. Some studies focus on specific sectors, particularly the energy sector, the residential sector and the agricultural sector, other instead analyze the interactions between sectors and macroeconomic issues. The methods used cover microeconomic analysis, future-looking modeling, and institutionalists and sociological qualitative approaches.

This research contributes in particular to the reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). For example, 3 researchers from Cired were in the authors’ team of the Working Group III on mitigation contribution to the fifth IPCC assessment report.

Researchers: Ruben Bibas, Thierry Brunelle, Christophe Cassen, Béatrice Cointe, Emmanuel Combet, Patrice Dumas, Eoin O’Broin, Dominique Finon, Frédéric Ghersi, Louis-Gaëtan Giraudet, Céline Guivarch, Minh Ha-Duong, Meriem Hamdi-Cherif, Jean-Charles Hourcade, Aurélie Mejean, Alain Nadaï, Philippe Quirion et Vincent Viguié

PhD Students: Audrey Berry, William Dang, Simona De Lauretis, Laurent Faucheux, Gaëlle Le Treut, Florian Leblanc, Julien Lefèvre, Elsa Mosseri, Hoang Anh Nguyen-Trinh, Quentin Perrier, Rémi Prudhomme, Aurélien Saussay, Jules Schers, Manon Solignac et Juan Fernando Vera

Adaptation to climate change

The gravity of climate change impacts will strongly depend on whether people anticipate them, and adapt to them, or not. To limit the negative consequences of climate change on societies, we need to both reduce greenhouse gas emissions ("mitigation"), or adapt to the effects of climate changes ("adaptation"). However, these two options have not been given equal consideration, and adaptation has long
been neglected in the climate change debate. This imbalance is indicative of the real
difficulties inherent in adaptation, like the treatment of uncertainty on the future impacts of climate change.

Research carried out in CIRED explore on one side general ideas and methodologies about how our society can adapt to climate change, and on the other side target issues in different fields:

  • General considerations about climate change adaptation
  • Adaptation and international negociations
  • Rainfed agriculture adaptation in West Africa (see here)
  • Cities adaptation to heat waves, and green infrastructures (see here)
  • Adaptation to a changing flood risk (see here and here)
  • Forestry adaptation (see here and here)
  • Water management and dam dimensioning under climate change (see here)

Researchers: Patrice Dumas, Philippe Quirion, Franck Lecocq et Vincent Viguié

Climate negotiations and institutional issues

Climate negotiations are addressed through empirical and theoretical works, that include political economy, institutional and historic analysis, sociology of scientific practices, modeling and games theory approaches. These works cover four research axes:

  • Analyzing conditions of reciprocity within international environmental agreements from a game theory perspective. It aims to determine the conditions that encourage countries to prioritize a reciprocal behavior instead of expressing their own interest. It compares the implications of three main behavioral logics: Berge, Nash and a logic based on social preferences.
  • Studying the interactions between uncertainty and international environmental agreement around the no-action risk of parties to the negotiation. This issue was addressed both from a theoretical and empirical point of view. The RESPONSE model is in particular used to determine “opinions clubs” in the climate negotiations.
  • Building upon long lasting CIRED experience in climate negotiations, the objective is to explore the path dependencies of the climate negotiations since the Rio conference and the implementation of climate finance mechanisms in the wake of the Paris Agreement.
  • Analyzing the conditions and practices of using models as tools of negotiations. This new research focus studies the structuring of the E3 (Energy/Environment/Economy) models communities, the building of models and scenarios and how together with the agenda of climate negotiation they impact the research agenda of the community.

Researchers: Jean-Charles Hourcade, Tarik Tazdait, Aurélie Mejean, Alain Nadaï et Christophe Cassen