We are addressing the grand challenges of climate change and of governing the global commons. Our research is rooted primarily in economics and other social sciences. We provide scientific policy advice and aim to identify policy-relevant solutions.
Global economic growth has led to the overuse of natural resources like the atmosphere, land and forests. These special assets are called global commons, because they need worldwide cooperation for their sustainable use. To achieve that, a farsighted and international view is needed, which governments and other stakeholders often lack. MCC aims to fill this gap and provides policy advice as well as research on long-term, global issues such as climate change: In this area we explore solutions, foster public debates, and support a broad societal exploration of development alternatives.
MCC was founded in 2012 by Stiftung Mercator and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). At the end of its inception phase, which ran from 2012 to 2015, MCC supported 28 full-time-equivalent positions, distributed across 47 total staff members. Our research is carried out in seven working groups and one special task force.
We envision a world of deliberative democracies that discuss openly and take well-informed decisions for the sustainable management of global commons. This ensures that current and future generations are provided with equitable access to the global commons.
MCC’s mission is to provide solution-oriented policy pathways for governing the global commons to enhance sustainable development and human well-being. Our approach is based on high-quality research to inform policy making in an iterative societal learning process. We call this assessment-making.
- Long-term and global: Based on high-level research, MCC develops and discusses solutions that address the long-term governance of global commons. The aim is to enhance sustainable development and to mitigate climate change. Although our research is driven by real-world problems, day-to-day politics are not our primary focus. Our research focuses on the conceptual design of policies with a long-term perspective.
- National and worldwide: MCC’s non-prescriptive approach to policy advice and assessment processes is addressed towards a broad spectrum of decision-makers at national, European and global levels, as well as international organizations and stakeholders from business or non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
- Transdisciplinary and thematically broad: We follow a transdisciplinary and thematically broad approach to assemble the required expertise in different complex and interrelated systems. Although our research is mainly rooted in economics, we also draw on disciplinary knowledge from philosophy, political science and other social sciences. We apply a broad range of methods, including empirical and theoretical analyses.
- Independent and relevant: While listening carefully to the existing demand for policy assessments, we are independent in our choice of topics and provide expertise for highly relevant societal problems without being constrained by sectional interests or predetermined outcomes.