Jan Minx professor for Science Policy and Sustainable Development

MCC’s cooperation on “Governance of the Global Commons” with the Hertie School of Governance has started.


Jan Christoph Minx, head of the new working group “Applied Sustainability Science” at the Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC), now also is professor for Science Policy and Sustainable Development at the Hertie School of Governance. His professorship constitutes the backbone of the cooperation “Governance of the Global Commons” of the two institutes and will allow to link research at the MCC with the teaching at the Hertie School.

“Both the MCC and the Hertie School support political consulting with reliable and applicable scientific information,” says MCC Director Ottmar Edenhofer. “For the MCC, this joint professorship marks the beginning of a new expansion phase in which the Institute will, through its involvement in teaching, contribute even more to excellence in the education and training of future decision-makers.”

“With the appointment of Jan Minx, we are strengthening our expertise in the fields of climate and energy policy and sustainability issues. Our students get firsthand experience in how science and policy processes are interrelated, for example at international climate negotiations,” says Helmut K. Anheier, president of the Hertie School.

Minx previously worked at the IPCC, where he coordinated the contribution of the Working Group “Mitigation” for the Fifth IPCC Assessment Report. Key questions of his research are: How and to what extent do humans contribute to the sharp rise in CO2 emissions? How might we change our use of energy and land resources in order to avoid the most dangerous impacts of climate change? What role can infrastructures and increasing urbanization play in reducing climate change? To address these questions, Minx focuses on the development and application of methods for making scientific information available and relevant for political decision-making processes.

“We are currently witnessing a veritable explosion of knowledge. And, because of that, the synthesis of this knowledge is becoming a critical new field of research. Today’s policy decision-makers need knowledge maps to be able to make informed decisions in an increasingly complex world,” says Minx.  

Minx will hold a presentation at the Hertie School of Governance on May 6, 2015: He will discuss with IPCC Chairman Rajendra Pachauri and Jochen Flasbarth, State Secretary of the Federal Ministry for the Environment, how scientific policy advice can contribute to a success of the climate conference in Paris at the end of this year.