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Who we are



We are deeply concerned with global climate change, the higher frequency of extreme weather conditions, the rise of sea level, land losses and floods in coastal regions, the intrusion of saltwater into the freshwater of small islands, the dramatic reduction in biodiversity, heat waves and droughts, hurricane violence and frequency, ubiquitous pollution. However, we are optimist that mitigation is still possible if the world reacts with extreme energy and cohesion.

At COP21, a universal agreement on climate change mitigation, adaptation, loss and damage, technology development and transfer, finance, capacity building has been finally consolidated. Wide-ranging ratification led to record-setting entry into force.

We hail the Paris Agreement and the other crucial COP Decisions. We are analysing it in a specially devoted website:
[Italian; English; French; Spanish; Arabic]

To raise further the ambition of the next wave of Nationally Determined Contribution, to actually achieve their current and future objectives, to support the civil society, the private sector, the cities and other sub-national entities, the investment institution in their own pledges and ctionsm, new approaches and policies are badly needed.

The success in Paris supports the perspective of a MOSAIC approach offering scope for different national commitments but also effective feedback mechanisms to ongoing rise in mitigation ambitions.

It should be built upon experiences from cities and sub-national territories, such as those which are implementing the innovative economic policies the Economics Web Institute has been proposing since COP15, including by direct participation to several COPs. Let's meet in Glasgow COP26 2020!

Towards 1.5C-consistent next Paris NDCs: a comparison between Italian and Swiss transport decarbonization strategy (Oct. 2018)


The Paris Agreement footprint on the IPCC Special Report on 1.5°C of global warming - an input to the scoping meeting and process

For the sake of the scoping meeting in August 2016, this paper provides four broad suggestions on how to best reflect the Paris Agreement into the IPCC report requested by the UNFCCC COP Decision. It provides a list of issues that might be discussed at the scoping meeting in order to produce together a preliminary table of contents of the Special Report on "The impacts of global warming of 1.5 ºC above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways" and key questions each chapter might answer.

The paper is organised as follows: in Part I, it reports the UNFCCC and IPCC decisions on the Special Report, then it shortly highlights why countries in UNFCCC asked for such report and which are the expectations it should fulfil. This leads to a first broad suggestion. Then it alternates a chapter devoted to discussion and a broad suggestion, for three times. Part II contains a long tentative Table of contents covering 11 chapters, very preliminarily outlining key questions for each one, based on the broad suggestions. Finally, limitations of the paper are highlighted in its conclusion.


EWI answer to IPCC questionnaire on the forthcoming Special Report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways


Call for co-authors on 1.5C papers

Paris Agreement: the COP21 texts

Approved version and previous president proposals.

12 pages of Paris Agreement and 15 pages in the COP Decision

Analysing the Paris Agreement

An initiative of the Economics Web Institute in Italian language and in automatic translation to English, French, Spanish and Arabic.

Paris Agreement: the evolution between October and November

The version of Oct 6 2015 of a possible text for the universal UNFCCC agreement, very significantly trimmed into manageable dimensions from this other previous July version, but certainly lacking key elements.


Expanded back in mid-October in Bonn:


Version of 10th November


One file with the full text of all INDC (Intended Nationally Determined Contribution) by UNFCCC countries

ZIP [65 Mb]

Climate change in perspective: the overall Global Universal Sustainable Development Goals



Innovative Economic Policies for Climate Change Mitigation


More than 20 policies to foster the transition towards a low-emission economy in developed and developing countries, with a wide spectrum of measures and solutions targeting firms, sectors, households and governments. They can be used as building blocks for NAMAs (Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions).

Instead of framing "climate change mitigation" as a cost, as the traditional carbon tax and the cap-and-trade system do, we feel it is a huge opportunity for innovation, profits, employment, wages and improvement of real quality of life.

This second edition adds chapters and reports on the first implementation of the policies around the world


Now available by worldwide!

An introduction

A catalogue of the policies from which to choose which ones best suit your country and sector

How to write action plans for mitigation and adaptation - the Athens conference full paper and the presentation by Valentino Piana


100 Best practices in energy for climate change mitigation

The fight against climate change, which has convened the world as a whole in Paris for Cop21, is not just a climate and environmental challenge: it is economic, technological and geopolitical. Italy is well positioned with a vast array of companies and products that, if more successful, could contribute in significant way to the global challenge.


Resistance and lobbying from fossil fuel vested interests: an empirical analysis [20 Nov 2015]

The full book on 'Incumbents and institutions in sustainability transitions'. It applies the institutional work and institutional logics perspectives to research the role of incumbents in sustainability transitions. Case studies covers the behavior of incumbents towards biomethane, biofuels, LED lighting, and the bottle deposit system.


A specific issue shedding light on worrying trends: Marine litter and microplastic pollution in the marine environment: An initial assessment of the case of the United Kingdom


Outcomes from Lima UNFCCC COP20

A long draft text for the possible universal agreement in Paris 2015, full of options and embedded in a intense procedural path. The mobilization of more than 10 billion dollars for climate through the Green Climate Fund, follower years-long debate to which also EWI participated. An update of the institutional mechanism to cope with losses and damage, the innovation and technology, gender-sensitive policies.

Why the world should begin immediately to reduce CO2 emissions through innovative policies

The latest 2013 paper by James Hansen et al. stating that "A world summit on climate change will be held at United Nations Headquarters in September 2014 as a preliminary to negotiation of a new climate treaty in Paris in late 2015. If this treaty is analogous to the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, based on national targets for emission reductions and cap-and-trade-with-offsets emissions trading mechanisms, climate deterioration and gross intergenerational injustice will be practically guaranteed.

We suggest that a pathway is still conceivable that could restore planetary energy balance on the century time scale. That path requires policies that spur technology development and provide economic incentives for consumers and businesses such that social tipping points are reached where consumers move rapidly to energy conservation and low carbon energies.

it is not obvious to us that there are physical or economic limitations that prohibit fossil fuel emission targets far lower than 1000 GtC, even targets closer to 500 GtC. Indeed, we suggest that rapid transition off fossil fuels would have numerous near-term and long-term social benefits, including improved human health and outstanding potential for job creation".



Living Planet Report 2014

An update of the state of the world.

Green economy world index (October 2014)


Coping with "losses and damages" from climate change

An EWI article for Climalteranti [Italian language], covering, among others, the issue of insuring people which will likely bear the burden of climate change (with polluters paying for it). This is more relevant than ever after the establishment of the Warsaw International Mechanism for loss and damage related to climate change impacts .


Small islands' approach to climate change mitigation and adaptation - The cases of Mauritius and Singapore (2010)


Governance Panarchy in the New Transformation

The sustainability lock in combined with transformative social innovation will lead to abrupt shifts. Unavoidably, it will be through instabilities, conflicts and tensions. The challenge therefore is how to move to a world within planetary, economic and social boundaries in the least disruptive way. In the paper this is called‘sustability’: taking the inability out of sustainability moving to a sustainable new stability. The idea is that these tensions might be anticipated as possible transition points, bringing together transformative social innovation, novel top-down forms of governance and phase-out strategies. With this idea of ‘governance panarchy’ the author hopes to contribute to accelerating sustainability transitions.

400 ppm of CO2 concentration in the athmosphere: the deadly news we tried hard to avoid


The world is quickly going into the climate catastrophe. We need innovation in policies and coalitions to avoid the worst.

Climate Change and Adaptation: The Italian Case

Innovative Schemes for Financing Adaptation and Enhancing Technology Tranfer

Adaptation strategies to minimize climate risk in companies

Lessons from Fukushima for the adaptation to climate change [Italian language]

How to write local plans for adaptation to climate change [ResearchGate account necessary to access the file]

Loss and damage

The first introduction of the concept in the Italian debate


Copenhagen Green Climate Fund - A Comment by Valentino Piana (Dec. 2009-Feb. 2010)

The conclusions of the High Level Panel on Climate Change Finance (November 2010) - with further background papers here

On the faces and phases of eco-innovation - on the dynamics of the greening of the economy by Maj Munch Andersen

Our COP15 side-event

The Economics Web Institute, IESP and the Club of Rome - EU Chapters organised this side-event to the Climate Conference in Copnehange (December 2009)


COP17 Durban on Climate Change: the full text of the outcome on mitigation, adaptation, climate finance, technology transfer and already painful losses and damages

In Durban, the international community has chosen to recognise the current shortcomings in the fight to climate change and launch a process aimed at increasing the GHG emission reductions, including with the operationalisation of the Green Climate Fund (whose origins date back to the Copenhagen Green Climate Fund) and improved cooperation in technology innovation and diffusion.


The final outcome of LCA in Cancún on climate change mitigation, adaptation, finance, technology and capacity-building


2011 Compilation of NAMAs (Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions) by non-Annex I countries


Policy options for mainstreaming forest-based mitigation measures in EU rural development

EWI director explores alternatives. Presentation at RomaForest2011, a major meeting of the forest sector in EU.


DG Clima statement


Creation of climate-conscious attitude and lifestyle

Nagoya Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) decisions (30 October 2010)

Biodiversity and climate change: the COP 10 decision

The full final text of the Nagoya protocol on access to genetic resources and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from their utilization to the convention on biological diversity

Integration of biodiversity into poverty eradication and development: the COP 10 decision

CBD Strategic plan for the period 2011-2020 "Living in harmony with nature" - and he list of targets


Just transition to a low-carbon economy

Climate change and social justice: recommendations to policymakers

The King Baudouin Foundation has invited our EWI director, among many other stakeholders and experts, in laying down recommendations to EU, national and sub-national policymakers to order to strike the right balance and synergies between social policies and climate change mitigation.

The process has been very transparent and inclusive, with final results being a far-sighted, clear, articulated and fairly detailed document fruit of real interaction. In particular, we are pleased that the need for transformational policies aimed at a fair and universal switch towards a low-carbon economy has been underlined, as our book has systematically suggested.

While not necessarily agreeing on each line of the text, the Economics Web Institute supports the widest diffusion of the recommendations, as it will be doing soon in public events in Russia and in Italy.

A decarbonisation path for Germany 2050

PDF [English]

PDF [German]

The Germany official position to reach 100% renewable energy in 2050


Merchants of doubts

A great book on how a cadre of influential scientists have clouded public understanding of scientific facts to advance a regressive political and economic agenda in favour of climate polluters, taking pages from tobacco industry playbook.

Homepage of the book

Migrations, bio-diversity and climate change

"Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions is vital if we are to avoid unmanageable levels of climate change." This is the final and key message of a June 2010 UNEP report on migratory species and their devastating vulnerability to climate change.

The state of the debate on climate change

The authors use an extensive dataset of 1,372 climate researchers and their publication and citation data to show that (i) 97–98% of the climate researchers most actively publishing in the field support the tenets of ACC outlined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and (ii) the relative climate expertise and scientific prominence of the researchers unconvinced of ACC are substantially below that of the convinced researchers


Climate change as a major obstacle to development: the Human Development Report 2010

Clean energy technology (CETs)- a map of patents

Patenting rates in the CETs have increased at roughly 20 per cent per annum since 1997. In that period, patenting in CETs has outpaced the traditional energy sources of fossil fuels and nuclear energy. The surge of patenting activity in CETs coincided with the adoption of the Kyoto Protocol in 1997, which provides a strong signal that political decisions setting adequate frameworks are important for stimulating the development of CETs. The fields experiencing the most intensive growth include solar PV, wind, carbon capture, hydro/marine and biofuels.

Report - Presented on 30th November 2010 at Cancun COP16


Key data

EU funds for fast start climate financing

PDF (2010)

PDF (2013)

A global overview with country data (2013)



CO2 emissions in 2009

Global data 2009 for 65+ countries - data released in August 2010

CO2 and other GHG emissions

Climate change is influenced by human activities emitting greenhouse gases. This dataset presents the international distribution of emissions for 41 countries (1990-2005) that are included in Annex I of the Kyoto Protocol.

MS Excel

GHG Emissions by country and sector (1980-2006)

A large dataset allowing for sectoral and international comparison of emission trajectories.

MS Excel


CO2 Emissions (1990-2008)

This dataset includes not only the Annex I countries but also China and other countries in the world that are included in Annex II of the Kyoto Protocol.

MS Excel

Per capita CO2 Emissions from fossil fuels (1980-2006)

MS Excel

CO2 Emissions from fossil fuels per thousands dollars of GDP (1980-2006)

MS Excel

CO2 Emissions for Transport - data for 50 countries (1990-2005)



World public opinion polls on climate change (July 2009)



Environmental taxes in 15 countries (1980-1999)

MS Excel


Oil world prices (1861-1999)

MS Excel [7 KB]


Environmental taxes in 15 countries (1980-1999)

MS Excel

Biodiversity in EU - awareness and attitudes

A survey in 27 countries about the importance of natural species survival and the wider biodiversity issues, as the relevance of climate change and other stressors.




The vision of the Mediterranean Climate Change Initiative
(October 2010) and the Final Joint declaration of the summit, signed by Albania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Egypt, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, France, Hellenic Republic, Israel, Italy, Malta, Mauritania, Montenegro, Palestinian National Authority, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Turkey



Key concepts



Substitute goods


Product differentiation




















Official texts

Warsaw COP19 final outcome

Durban COP17 final outcome

The final outcome of LCA in Cancún

The draft of the decisions (produced at Tianjin - October 2010 and updated in Cancún - 4 December 2010)

The LCA negotiating text - 13th August 2010

LCA text 17 May 2010 - an attempt to integrate the Copenhagen Accord and the larger previous LCA Text.

and its updated version of 10th June 2010

Copenhagen Accord - Full Text (19th Dec)

Leaked US vs. China positions (8th and 10th Dec)

The text that has not been signed - submitted by AWG-LCA

Other proposals on the table that were not signed (from USA, Tuvalu, AOSIS , African Group, etc.)

Secretariat internal assessment of reduction pledges and their effects on total emissions and temperature rise (15/12/2009)


The 2009 negotiating texts towards COP15

Consolidated text of AWG-LCA (15 September 2009)

June 2009 Text in preparation of August talks (all working groups)

It's a major update of the following texts:

The long-term shared vision, goal, and provisions for mitigation, adaptation, technology, finance and capacity-building (19 May 2009)


National positions

Towards a comprehensive climate change agreement in Copenhagen: the EU position on 28.1.2009

Proposed amendments to Kyoto Protocol


Declaration on climate change issued by world leaders at the Major Economies Forum on July, 9th, 2009


Other proposals

A Proposal for a Copenhagen Agreement by Members of the Environmental NGO Community

A comprehensive outcome with clear and ambitious goals, funding, mechanism. Legal text

The proposal by the Wuppertal Institute for the post-2012 regime

The carbon budget proposal by the German Advisory Council on Global Change (WBGU) (July 2009)

The full text of Tony Blair - backed report of Climate Initiative demonstrating that “ambitious” greenhouse-gas reductions would spur economic growth and create as many as 10 million jobs by 2020, based on the model by the Cambridge Centre for Climate Change Mitigation and Cambridge Econometrics (20th September 2009)

Towards COP15: UN note about climate change tools and their consequences (16 March 2009)

Hyogo Framework for Action: International Strategy
for Disaster Reduction

World Bank: World Development Report 2010: Development and Climate Change [27 MB] - Full Text

UNCTAD - Climate change mitigation and development - Trade and Development Report 2009 - Full Text

Strategy for Australia: a safe transition plan

A zero carbon plan for Australia

The full text of the IMF Green Fund proposal

The International Monetary Funds is exploring how to raise large funds for green purposes.


Papers and essays in evolutionary economics on climate change

Policies for Climate Change in the long Run: Wiring up the Innovation System for Eco-innovation

Environmental innovation and industrial dynamics: the contributions of evolutionary economics

Adoption paid by non-adopters: an innovative techno-economic policy to spread clean technologies

Peak Oil - Coming Soon but When?

UNEPRISOE Economics of Greenhouse Gas Limitations

Technological transitions as evolutionary reconfiguration processes: A multi-level perspective and a case-study

Green Economy Guidebook

Renewable Energy Scenarios for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Climate change and radical energy innovation: the policy issues

The Economics of Avoiding Dangerous Climate Change

Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions through Behavioral Change

Changing household behaviours: learning for urban sustainability

Changing behaviour: the power of feelings, emotional persuasion, framing, and radicality

Stimulating diffusion of green products - Co-evolution between firms and consumers

Evolutionary Theorising on Technological Change and Sustainable Development

What evolutionary economics has to say about climate

Inducing Socio-Technological Revolution in Energy Network
Investment to address Climate Change: An Evolutionary
Institutional Economics Model of Agent Behaviour

Green Innovation and Policy: a Co-Evolutionary Approach

Policy Instruments for Evolution of Bounded Rationality:
Application to Climate-Energy Problems

Models in evolutionary economics and environmental policy: Towards an evolutionary environmental economics

Behavioral Economics and Climate Change Policy

Competing Recombinant Technologies for Environmental Innovation

Consumer sovereignty and the paradigm of sustainability – a behavioural economics perspective

The Forgotten Benefits of Climate Change Mitigation: Innovation, Technological Leapfrogging, Employment, and Sustainable Development

The Fallacy of Pure Efficiency Gain Measures to Control Future Climate Change

The Fallacies of Energy Efficiency: The Rebound Effect?

Consumption, Happiness, and Climate Change

Fiddling while carbon burns: why climate policy needs pervasive emission pricing as well as technology promotion

Demand-pull energy technology policies, diffusion, and improvements in California wind power

The economics of abrupt climate change

The economics of catastrophic climate change

Better Decision Making Under Climate Uncertainty: Lessons from Psychology

The Behavioural Economics of Climate Change

Equity and Distributional Issues in the Design of Environmental Tax Reform

Asian development pathways and sustainable socio-technical regimes

Energy Efficiency and the Possible Rebound Effect: An Agent-Based Simulation

Policy Instruments for Evolution of Bounded Rationality: Application to Climate-Energy Problems

The psychology of global warming - Sampling, framing, conceptual understanding, consensus building (August 2010)

Proximity in product space and diversification strategies
Oil-exporting countries now faces a problem of diversification, while requiring an international forum where to discuss the national implications of global action for mitigation of climate change.

For a look at how difficult is to diversify, see this paper based on a new methodology proposed in a paper by Hidalgo, Klinger, Barabasi, and Haussman. Ten steps of intentional diversification strategies are outlined.



Further papers

Green recovery - an international comparison (2009)

Climate change report from Australia's Garnaut [15 MB]

A Taxonomy of Instruments to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions and their Interactions

A Preliminary Set of Innovative Options for Post-2012 Climate Politics (ADAM Project)

Strategies for Reducing Emissions from Transport

Policy Options for Internalising the External Costs of Transport in the EU

The Economics of Climate Change in Southeast Asia: A Regional Review (April 2009)

Southeast Asia produced 12% of the world’s greenhouse gases at the turn of the century and, with the region’s expanding population and economies, its global share of GHG emissions is likely to increase under “business-as-usual”.

Yet, Southeast Asia is among the regions of the world with the greatest potential for mitigating carbon dioxide by reducing deforestation and improving land management practices.

It also has vast, untapped opportunities for energy efficiency improvements and for increasing the use of renewable energy sources, including biomass, solar, wind, hydro and geothermal—all leading to GHG emission reductions.

This study urges Southeast Asian countries to play their part in a global solution to climate change by introducing sustainable development policies that incorporate mitigation and adaptation activities.

The economics of Climate Change Mitigation: How to Build the Necessary Global Action in a Cost-Effective Manner (OECD - 5 June 2009)

Further data and discussions

Climalteranti [in Italian language]

Earth Policy Institute



Background papers

Bali Action Plan

Kyoto Protocol

UNFCCC Convention


IPCC, 2007: Summary for Policymakers. In: Climate Change 2007: Mitigation. Contribution of Working Group III to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

IPCC - Full report on Mitigation [20 MB]

Confronting Climate Change: Avoiding the Unmanageable and Managing the Unavoidable - Scientific Expert Group Report on Climate Change and Sustainable Development [15 MB]

Time for Plan B - Cutting Carbon Emissions 80 Percent by 2020 [3 MB] Brochure [0.7 MB]

Stern Review - Full text [12 MB]

Key Elements of a Global Deal on Climate Change

The Shanghai Declaration 2010


The denials' strategy

Talking points against climate change - the strategy of deniers



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