The Harvard Project releases a collection of expert briefs on the elaboration of the Paris Agreement.
October 1, 2016
"Can the Green Economy Deliver It All? Experiences of Renewable Energy Policies with Socio-economic Objectives"
Applied Energy, volume 179
The Green Economy (GE) paradigm aims to reconcile environmental and socio-economic objectives. Policies to deploy renewable energy (RE) are widely perceived as a way to tap the potential synergies of these objectives. It is, however, still largely unclear whether the potential of simultaneously achieving both environmental and socio-economic objectives can be fully realized, and whether and how multiple objectives influence policy design, implementation, and evaluation. The authors aim to contribute to this aspect of GE research by looking at selected country experiences of renewable energy deployment with respect to the socio-economic goals of job creation or energy access.
Survival, issue 5, volume 58
By Ben Buchanan, Postdoctoral Fellow, Cyber Security Project
Encryption's new normal is changing the way in which states assert their sovereignty at home and abroad. Cryptography has gone mainstream. Now more than ever, encryption is used by ordinary citizens, often without their knowledge, and is a subject of national debate.
Nature Energy, volume 1
By Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Gabe Chan, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2012–2015, Amitai Bin-Nun, Former Associate, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, 2014–2016 and Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program
Accelerating the development and deployment of energy technologies is a pressing challenge. Doing so will require policy reform that improves the efficacy of public research organizations and strengthens the links between public and private innovators. With their US$14 billion annual budget and unique mandates, the US National Laboratories have the potential to critically advance energy innovation, yet reviews of their performance find several areas of weak organizational design. This article discusses the challenges the National Laboratories face in engaging the private sector, increasing their contributions to transformative research, and developing culture and management practices to better support innovation. The authors also offer recommendations for how policymakers can address these challenges.
September 8, 2016
"Lessons learned from dismantlement of South Africa's biological, chemical, and nuclear weapons programs"
By Olli Heinonen, Senior Associate, Managing the Atom Project
South Africa had active nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons programs during the 1970s and 1980s. South Africa dismantled its nuclear weapon program prior to its 1991 accession to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). Similarly, it terminated its chemical weapons program prior to its 1995 ratification of the Chemical Weapons Convention. Only the dismantlement of Pretoria's nuclear weapons program was subjected to international verification—albeit ex post facto—following a 1993 decision of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) General Conference to verify the correctness and completeness of South Africa's declarations under its NPT safeguards agreement. During the 1980s, South Africa also developed and purportedly used biological weapons, violating its obligations under the 1972 Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on their Destruction, which it had ratified in 1975. This article draws lessons from the verification of the dismantlement of these programs and makes recommendations for future verification work to confirm the elimination of weapons of mass destruction capabilities.
By Calestous Juma, Professor of the Practice of International Development; Director, Science, Technology, and Globalization Project; Principal Investigator, Agricultural Innovation in Africa and Ismail Serageldin
As the African Union develops its long-term agenda 2063 for the continent, science, technology and innovation will play a bigger part in development goal setting, especially in the context of social and economic growth.
The authors examine the pledge and review system of the Paris Agreement, which gives states much more freedom in setting goals for reducing emissions. This is quite different than the Kyoto Protocol, which set specific targets and timetables.
"Early Summer Response of the East Asian Summer Monsoon to Atmospheric CO2 Forcing and Subsequent Sea Surface Warming"
Journal of Climate, issue 15, volume 29
In this article, the authors investigate the response of the EASM to CO2 forcing at different time scales, and untangle various dynamic and thermodynamic processes that can mediate the precipitation response to changes in boundary forcing (such as land–sea contrast, topography, and SSTs) through radiation–circulation interactions.
By Pinar Akcayoz De Neve, Project Manager, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Jinqiang (JC) Chen, Former Giorgio Ruffolo Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Sustainability Science, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2015–2016, Gianfranco Gianfrate, Giorgio Ruffolo Research Fellow in Sustainability Science , Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Karoline Steinbacher, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program and Henry Lee, Director, Environment and Natural Resources Program
Building on the momentum of the agreement reached at the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21) to the UNFCCC and Italy's intent to put forward a national program flowing from such agreements, the Environment and Natural Resources Program at the Harvard Kennedy School, Aspen Institute Italia and the Italian Ministry for the Environment, Land and Sea convened a workshop in Florence, Italy on July 1, 2016 to discuss the Post-COP21 climate strategies and efforts to realize sustainable economies in Europe. The objective of the workshop was to provide a safe environment where policy makers, academics and industry leaders could come together and discuss how Europe could achieve a lower carbon energy transition. The workshop consisted of three main sessions: (1) How to achieve the EU2030 and 2050 goals; (2) how energy technology innovation can be spurred to create more options; and finally (3) what financial advances are necessary to fund these efforts. This not-for-attribution post-workshop report summarizes the highlights of the discussions, without attributing any views or comments to specific individuals.
August 12, 2016
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
By Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Gabe Chan, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2012–2015, Alicia Harley, Kira Matus, Suerie Moon, Sharmila L. Murthy and William C. Clark, Harvey Brooks Professor of International Science, Public Policy, and Human Development; Co-director, Sustainability Science Program; Faculty Chair, ENRP
This article sets forth the authors' perspective on how technological innovation can better advance the goals of sustainable development. The authors seek to help bridge the gap between scholarship and practice by drawing from conceptual research, empirical cases, and real-world experience to highlight practical guidelines for use by practicing scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, and policy advocates.