Dr. Brigitte Knopf

Secretary General

Dr. Brigitte Knopf

Dr. Brigitte Knopf is Secretary General of MCC. She is responsible for 

  • Management and Strategy of MCC
  • Cooperation with Universities and Stakeholders from government, business and civil society
  • German and European energy and climate policy (Energiewende)

Her recent work focusses on the implementation of the Paris Agreement at the German and international level. Currently she is member of the UN Climate Science Advisory Group to guide the preparations for the 2019 Climate Action Summit. She is lead author of the chapter on fiscal policies for the low-carbon transition of the UNEP Emissions Gap Report 2018. In the context of the G20 process, she develops strategies how carbon pricing could support not only climate change mitigation, but also finance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In the German context, she develops a concept for introducing carbon pricing.

Before joining MCC in 2015, she was deputy head of the research domain Sustainable Solutions at the Potsdam-Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) and head of the group Energy Strategies Europe and Germany. She holds a PhD in physics. In 2014, she coordinated the Euro-CASE assessment of the EU emissions trading scheme. As an expert for the German Energiewende and European climate and energy policy, from 2013-2014 she led an international model comparison on the effects of technology choices on EU climate policy that explores EU's 2030 climate target and that is closely linked to the Energy Roadmap. From 2007-2010 she coordinated one of the first global model comparisons of the technical feasibility of the 2°C target.

Brigitte Knopf is also interested in scientific policy advice and the design of the science-policy interface. From 2009 to 2011 she was Senior Advisor of the Technical Support Unit of the IPCC Working Group III for preparing the IPCC Special Report on Renewables. She is also contributing author in IPCC's Fifths Assessment Report of Working Group III on the Mitigation of Climate Change.

Brigitte Knopf is author of several publications in scientific journals and involves actively in the public debate in Germany and at the EU level with presentations and media interviews. 


Curriculum vitae

Detailed CV with list of publications



Journal Articles (peer reviewed)

see below ("Current Publications")


Opinion pieces and newspaper articles

Brigitte Knopf, Matthias Kalkuhl (2019): CO2 besteuern und das Geld an die Bürger zurückzahlen. Zeit Online, 07.02.2019.

Knopf, Brigitte (2017): A step to the side: the G20’s climate danceT20 Germany Blog, 14.07.2017

Knopf, Brigitte (2017): Three policy options for Germany to lead the G20 towards carbon pricing. T20 Germany Blog, 26.01.2017

Knopf, Brigitte (2015): G20 can do what Paris climate summit can't: tax carbonHuffington Post, 8.12.2015

Knopf, Brigitte (2015): Nach der Klimakonferenz sind die G20 mit der Umsetzung dranDer Tagesspiegel, 27.11.2015.

Knopf, Brigitte (2015): Sportliches Klimaprogramm für IndienFrankfurter Rundschau, 08.10.2015.

Knopf, Brigitte (2015): Die Katholische Kirche und das Klima: Welches Geheimnis sich in der Enzyklika des Papstes verbirgt. Der Tagesspiegel, 24.6.2015. Link

Knopf, Brigitte (2015): Heaven belongs to us all – the new papal encyclical. energypost, 19.6.2015.   Link

Knopf, Brigitte (2015): Der Himmel gehört uns allen – die neue Enzyklika des Papstes. SciLogs KlimaLounge, 19.6.2015. Link 

Knopf, Brigitte (2015): Heaven belongs to us all – the new papal encyclical. RealClimate, 18.6.2015.   Link


Latest Publications

Edenhofer, O., Flachsland, C., Kalkuhl, M., Knopf, B., Pahle, M., 2019

Optionen für eine CO2-Preisreform

Edenhofer, O., Flachsland, C., Arlinghaus, J., Haywood, L., Kalkuhl, M., Knopf, B., Koch, N., Kornek, U., Pahle, M., Pietzcker, R., Steckel, J., Ward, H., 2018

Eckpunkte einer CO2-Preisreform für Deutschland

MCC Working Paper No. 1
Kalkuhl, M., Knopf, B., Van Dender, K., et al., 2018

Bridging the gap: Fiscal reforms for the low-carbon transition

United Nations Environment Programme (Ed.), Emissions Gap Report 2018. pp. 43–51
Jakob, M., Soria, R., Trinidad, C., Edenhofer, O., Bak, C., Bouile, D., Buira, D., Carlino, H., Gutman, V., Hübner, C., Knopf, B., Lucena, A., Santos, L., Scott, A., Steckel, J.C., Tanaka, K., Vogt-Schilb, A., Yamada, K., 2018

Green Fiscal Reform for a Just Energy Transition in Latin America

T20 Policy Brief
Knopf, B., Burghaus, K., Flachsland, C., Jakob, M., Koch, N., Edenhofer, O., 2018

Shifting Paradigms in Carbon Pricing

Peer Review

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