About this blog

The MCC Common Economics Blog is an online platform that facilitates our aim of strengthening the dialogue between science, policymakers and the public. As "cartographers of knowledge" at the science policy interface, we map the state of science at the MCC: up-to-date content on the topics assessments, coal, carbon pricing, urbanization, development and negative emissions. We want to convey crucial information in an easy-to-digest way and communicate our scientific findings to major stakeholders and the public. 

The MCC Common Economics Blog reflects on a new challenge for the future of our economic system: The prosperity of the 21st century will be determined by the sustainable management of the global commons such as the atmosphere, oceans and forests. In its function as a sink for CO2 and other greenhouse gases, the atmosphere is a global common-pool resource. Essentially, the mitigation of climate change is a global public good, posing policy challenges both at the national level (within countries) as well as at the international level (between countries). We seek to understand the impact of climate change and climate change mitigation on long-term welfare and growth. 

Currently however, the commons are treated as “no man’s land” that is available to everyone free of charge. Although everybody benefits from their sustainable usage, there are incentives for free-riding. With every nation thinking this way, individual shrewdness turns into collective stupidity. Some form of cooperation will be a survival condition for humanity. It is the mission of the MCC Common Economics Blog to develop, foster and communicate critical and policy-relevant knowledge in the economics of climate change and sustainability.

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Contributors

Prof. Dr. Ottmar Edenhofer

Prof. Dr. Ottmar Edenhofer is Director of the Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) and designated Co-Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). He also served as Co-Chair of Working Group III of the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report.

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Dr. Brigitte Knopf

Dr. Brigitte Knopf is Secretary General of the MCC, responsible for the management and strategy of the institute. Her recent work focusses on the implementation of the Paris Agreement. She develops strategies on how carbon pricing can support climate change mitigation and finance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the UN.

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Prof. Dr. Felix Creutzig

Prof. Dr. Felix Creutzig is head of the MCC working group Land Use, Infrastructures and Transport and Professor of Sustainability Economics at Technische Universität Berlin. He is Coordinating Lead Author of the upcoming Sixth Assessment Report (AR6) of the IPCC and was Lead Author of AR5.

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Prof. Dr. Christian Flachsland

Prof. Dr. Christian Flachsland is head of the MCC working group Governance and Assistant Professor of Climate and Energy Governance at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin. Prior to joining the MCC, he worked in the Policy Instruments working group at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK).

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Prof. Dr. Sabine Fuss

Dr. Sabine Fuss leads the MCC working group Sustainable Resource Management and Global Change. She is a Lead Author of the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C and a member of the Scientific Steering Committee of the Global Carbon Project (GCP), where she leads a research initiative on Negative Emissions.

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Dr. Michael Jakob

Dr. Michael Jakob coordinates the MCC Task Force Public Economics, which aims to identify government policies that provide efficient and fair access to the global commons while being practically feasible. He holds a PhD in economics from TU Berlin and has obtained degrees in physics, economics, and international relations.

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Prof. Dr. Matthias Kalkuhl

Prof. Dr. Matthias Kalkuhl is head of the MCC working group Economic Growth and Human Development and Professor of Climate Change, Development and Economic Growth at the University of Potsdam. He advised the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development and contributed to the IPCC’s Special Report on Renewable Energy Sources.

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Dr. Martin Kowarsch

Dr. Martin Kowarsch is head of the MCC working group Scientific Assessments, Ethics, and Public Policy (SEP). With Ottmar Edenhofer, he developed a refined science-policy model called the “Pragmatic-Enlightened Model” (PEM), which influenced the assessment strategy of IPCC Working Group III during the Fifth Assessment cycle.

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Prof. Jan Minx, PhD

Prof. Jan Christoph Minx, PhD, is head of the MCC working group Applied Sustainability Science and Professor for Climate Change and Public Policy at the University of Leeds. He was Head of the Technical Support Unit of Working Group III of the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) and is a Lead Author of the upcoming AR6.

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Dr. Jan Steckel

Dr. Jan Steckel is head of the working group Climate and Development. He is also affiliated with the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) and teaches at TU Berlin. He was an author of the IPCC’s Special Report on Renewables as well as of its Fifth Assessment Report and led a chapter on phasing out coal for the UNEP emissions gap report 2017.

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