The conference is sponsored by DKN Future Earth.

About the organisers

The conference is organised by the MCC (main organisers: Dr. Martin Kowarsch and Dr. Dominic Lenzi).

The Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) is an international scientific think tank located in Berlin and was co-founded in 2012 by Stiftung Mercator and the Potsdam-Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). The MCC explores policy options for using and managing global commons so as to promote sustainable development and human well-being. Scientific policy advice at the MCC is seen as a process of assessment-making. The MCC contributes to assessments in four ways: (1) providing relevant high-level scientific publications that close knowledge gaps; (2) synthesizing the state of research which serves as important contribution to assessment processes; (3) leading or participating in formalized, large-scale assessment processes; and (4) systematically reflecting on the practice of scientific policy advice and integrated assessment.

The MCC working group “<link en research working-groups scientific-assessments-ethics-and-public-policy.html>Scientific Assessments, Ethics, and Public Policy” (SEP) contributes to (4) by doing research about the science-policy interface as well as about normative political philosophy concerning sustailability. It is headed by Dr. Martin Kowarsch. SEP research focuses particularly on normative aspects in integrated, environmental policy assessments with a view towards deliberative democracy and justice.

Contact: event(at)


Selected MCC publications on the conference theme:

Kowarsch, M., Flachsland, C., Garard, J., Jabbour, J., Riousset, P., 2017a. The treatment of divergent viewpoints in global environmental assessments. Environmental Science & Policy.

Kowarsch, M.; Edenhofer, O., 2016. Principles or Pathways? Improving the Contribution of Philosophical Ethics to Climate Policy. In: Climate Justice in a Non-Ideal World. Clare Heyward, and Dominic Roser (eds.). Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 296–318.

Lenzi, Dominic; Lamb, William F.; Hilaire, Jérôme; Kowarsch, Martin; Minx, Jan C. (2018): Don’t deploy negative emissions technologies without ethical analysis. Nature 561, 303–305.

Lenzi, D., 2018. The Ethics of Negative Emissions. Global Sustainability.

Kowarsch, M., Jabbour, J., Flachsland, C., Kok, M.T.J., Watson, R., Haas, P.M., Minx, J.C., Alcamo, J., Garard, J., Riousset, P., Pintér, L., Langford, C., Yamineva, Y., von Stechow, C., O’Reilly, J., Edenhofer, O., 2017b. A road map for global environmental assessments. Nature Clim. Change 7, 379–382.

Kowarsch, M., 2016. A Pragmatist Orientation for the Social Sciences in Climate Policy. How to Make Integrated Economic Assessments Serve Society. Boston Studies in the Philosophy and History of Science 323. Springer Nature

Kowarsch, M., 2017. Beyond general principles: water ethics in a Deweyan perspective. In: Ziegler, Rafael; and Groenfeldt, David (eds.): Global Water Ethics: Towards a Global Ethics Charta. Routledge, pp. 57–74.

Kowarsch, M., Garard, J., Riousset, P., Lenzi, D., Dorsch, M.J., Knopf, B., Harrs, J.-A., Edenhofer, O., 2016. Scientific assessments to facilitate deliberative policy learning. Palgrave Communications 2.