POSTDOCTORAL ASSOCIATE, GUND INSTITUTE, THE UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT

The Gund Institute for Environment at the University of Vermont (UVM) is recruiting Postdoctoral Associates for Fall 2018 to conduct research on major global environmental challenges.  We seek exceptional early-career scholars committed to connecting interdisciplinary research to real-world issues in environment and sustainability.

About the position:

Postdocs are expected to pursue rigorous, original research that spans traditional disciplines and contributes to achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.  Postdocs will be supervised by at least one Fellow of the Gund Institute at UVM as their advisor or co-advisor.  Co-advisors from different departments are encouraged. We expect postdocs to develop additional collaborations with other UVM scholars, and to participate actively in seminars, trainings, gatherings, and other events hosted by the institute.

These are two-year positions, given satisfactory progress in the first year. We offer an annual salary of $49,000 plus benefits, and a discretionary fund of $5,000/year to support research costs and travel. Postdocs will also have opportunities for professional development (e.g., media and communications training). Expected start date is September 1, 2018.

About the Gund Institute:

The Gund Institute is a newly expanded campus-wide center for interdisciplinary research, where more than 100 faculty, global affiliates, post-docs, and graduate students collaborate widely to understand the interactions among natural, social, and economic systems. Consistent with the mission of the Institute, we pursue projects that both advance research frontiers and address concrete environmental issues.

Eligibility and application:

Candidates must have completed their PhD by the expected start date, and no earlier than 5 years before it. Competitive candidates will have a strong record of success in their PhD program, a demonstrated commitment to interdisciplinary work, a keen interest in connecting research to policy and decisions, and high potential to become global leaders in sustainability.

If interested, first contact potential advisors from among the Gund Fellows to discuss your ideas. The best proposals are typically co-developed with potential advisors. Submit an online application by March 15, 2018, including a cover letter, CV, and research proposal.

Applications also require a letter of support from a proposed advisor. These should be emailed directly to Jeannine.Valcour@uvm.edu by the applicant’s proposed advisor by March 15. Applications will be evaluated on scientific merit, potential for real-world impact, excellence of the applicant, fit with Gund Institute research themes, and feasibility.

About the University of Vermont:

The University of Vermont (UVM) is the only comprehensive university in the state and Vermont’s land-grant institution. UVM enrolls 13,000 students, including 1,500 graduate students, and attracts more than $138 million in research awards annually. The campus overlooks Lake Champlain, between the Adirondack and Green mountains, and is surrounded by the small, historical city of Burlington, perennially voted one of America’s best places to live. UVM is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. Applications from women and people from diverse racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds are encouraged.

Read/share this posting online: http://go.uvm.edu/postdocs

SEED (Univ. Waterloo) Faculty Position

The School of Environment, Enterprise and Development (SEED), in the Faculty of Environment, University of Waterloo, invites applications for a tenure-track position at the Assistant Professor level with expertise that combines business and environment. Candidates for Assistant Professor should have a completed Ph.D. by the commencement of employment, and should demonstrate the potential for high-quality research and teaching. The salary range for this position is $85,000 to $115,000 per annum.

Individuals with degrees in business, economics, economic geography, planning, entrepreneurship or public policy are encouraged to apply. Preferred candidates will have research expertise and/or teaching experience in one or more of the following areas: sustainability management, innovation, international business, sustainable operations, and qualitative and quantitative methods. The position will support teaching and research activities in SEED’s environment and business, economic development and innovation, international development, and sustainability management programs.

Applications will be accepted until February 16th, 2018 with interviews commencing in March 2018. The anticipated start date for the position is July 1, 2018. Interested candidates are invited to submit a detailed curriculum vita, a statement explaining how their abilities and interests relate to SEED with regard to research and teaching, as well as the names, addresses, email addresses and telephone numbers of three referees. Please send an application package to: Marion Brown, School of Environment, Enterprise and Development, Faculty of Environment, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, N2L 3G1, or submit electronically to ma4brown@uwaterloo.ca

Located at the heart of Canada’s technology hub, one-hour west of Toronto and serving over 35,000 full- and part-time students, the University of Waterloo (UW) is among Canada’s finest universities. For 26 straight years, UW has been ranked as the most innovative university in the country, and for 18 of those 22 years, educational leaders have ranked it Canada’s best university overall. UW stands out among its peers not only for its strong research profile and innovative approaches to education, but also for its uniquely positive and enterprising relationships with business and the world of practice. Waterloo has been ranked one of the best places in the world for start-ups, which is why start-ups like FleetCarma have chosen to call Waterloo Region home. The Region also boasts of hundreds of technology-driven enterprises, including offices of OpenText, Square, and Google.

Founded in 2009, SEED, located in the biggest Faculty of Environment in Canada, has quickly established itself as a recognized leader in integrated approaches for sustainable solutions to the world’s most pressing environmental, social and development challenges. SEED offers comprehensive and highly inter-disciplinary professional programs, at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, in sustainable business and development, with degrees in environment and business, sustainability management, international development, and local economic development. SEED offers two undergraduate programs (Environment & Business, International Development) and four graduate programs (Environment & Business, Sustainability Management, Economic Development and Innovation, and Development Practice). SEED has a current enrolment of approximately 1,000 undergraduate and graduate students, and is experiencing further growth. The School is adding faculty members, developing new programs and growing research capacities. SEED is located in a 57,000 sq. ft. LEED© Platinum building with classrooms, student space and offices. For details about the school and its programs please visit: http://seed.uwaterloo.ca.

The University of Waterloo respects, appreciates and encourages diversity and is committed to accessibility for persons with disabilities. We welcome applications from all qualified individuals including women, members of visible minorities, Aboriginal peoples and persons with disabilities. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadian citizens and permanent residents will be given priority in the recruitment process.

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­“Three reasons to apply: http://uwaterloo.ca/fauw/why.”

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS EAERE-FEEM-VIU European Summer School in Resource and Environmental Economics

Climate Change Assessment: Economic Models and Evaluation Criteria
30 June – 6 July 2018 – Venice, Italy

www.feem.it/ess18/

Deadline for applications: February 15th, 2018

The European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists (EAERE), Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM) and Venice International University (VIU) are pleased to announce their annual European Summer School in Resource and Environmental Economics for postgraduate students.

The 2018 Summer School will take place from the 30th June to the 6th of July at the VIU campus on the Island of San Servolo, in Venice, located just in front of St. Mark’s Square. The topic covered by the 2018 Summer School is the Climate Change Assessment: Economic Models and Evaluation Criteria.

The objective of the 2018 School is to provide students with a broad understanding of the theory and practice of welfare assessment of economic climate change models, and more generally in the evaluation of long-term environmental economic problems. We focus on two different perspectives: (i) how to construct analytical and numerical climate change models; and (ii) how to design appealing welfare criteria for climate change assessment.

Different economic models and evaluation criteria can lead to vastly different policy recommendations, partially undermining their influence. Some models and criteria can imply pathologic or socially unacceptable implications; for example, when evaluating risk, uncertainty, inequalities, and endogenous population. These issues are addressed in a synthesis of the modelling and evaluative perspectives, following the recent advances in climate change economics.

The 2018 School aims at Ph.D. students and Postdocs working on related topics; Ph.D. students are expected to be in the process of writing a thesis chapter on positive or normative aspects of welfare assessment of climate change (or related long-run integrated policy assessment problems). Attendants will present their research and will receive valuable feedback from the other participants as well as from the School lecturers. An assigned tutor will provide individual feedback during consultation time.

FACULTY

Matthew ADLER
Richard A. Horvitz Professor of Law and Professor of Economics, Philosophy and Public Policy, Duke University

Geir ASHEIM (School Co-Coordinator)
Professor of Economics, University of Oslo

Marc FLEURBAEY
Robert E. Kuenne Professor in Economics and Humanities Studies, Princeton University

Reyer GERLAGH
Professor of Environmental Economics, Tilburg University

Paolo PIACQUADIO (School Co-Coordinator)
Associate Professor of Economics, University of Oslo

Christian TRAEGER
Professor of Economics, University of Oslo

ADMISSION AND SCHOLARSHIPS

The Summer School is aimed at Ph.D. students who are writing a thesis on the dynamic macro-economics of environmental and resource problems or climate change and Postdocs who want to engage into a highly interactive exchange with experts in the field. Students will be asked to present an advanced version of their research work and will receive valuable feedback from fellow students and from the School professors.

Application is restricted to 2018 EAERE members, both European and non European citizens.

The application form, information on participation fee and scholarships, and the Summer School regulations are available in the Summer School website.

Summer School Secretariat
Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei
ess@feem.it
www.feem.it/ess18

2018 Conference of the International Society for Ecological Economics

From http://www.isecoeco.org/isee2018/:

25-27 June 2018, Mexico City

Ecological Economics and Socio-ecological Movements:
Science, policy, and challenges to global processes in a troubled world

Over the past quarter-century since the ISEE was founded the international community has developed a substantial corpus of law and agreements that recognize our collective responsibility to attend to these serious problems while recognizing the extraordinary diversity of societies in our midst. Our colleagues are engaged in significant efforts to identify and understand the underlying obstacles to implementing effective policies that address the limitations of existing institutions while also searching for new approaches to overcome these problems.

In this vein, we have identified a number of important international issues that Ecological Economists are examining as part of our collective effort. Five problems of particular importance identified by our colleagues are:

  • International capital movements to control natural endowments (land, water, and energy grabbing; biopiracy; ecologically unequal trade) and control social groups
  • International migration in response extreme differences among regions and peoples.
  • Continuing excessive emissions of greenhouse gases at world level in spite of international efforts to reverse the historical trend, combined with remarkable changes in the energy matrix of some countries.
  • Concentration of wealth, income and appropriation of environmental endowments that give rise to conflicts over distribution and provoke “resistance” movements.
  • Threats to biodiversity and the ability of the planet to sustain its natural processes.

While not exhaustive, a considerable number of members of the ISEE are engaged in research on these matters. The lack of flexibility of existing institutions in most countries and the capture of many international organizations by entrenched interests (selling uncritical notions of ecological modernization, “sustainable development”, the “circular economy”) are generating complex obstacles for people searching for solutions to clearly identified problems; social and political conflict is intensifying around the world. At the same time, we are discovering that people around the world are adopting alternative ways to organize themselves, forging new models of “good living”, oftentimes choosing to live at the margins of their societies rather than open themselves to outside environmental and economic exploitation, and to internal and external colonialism. Ecological economists are discovering that these people have much to teach us about possible alternative paths to addressing the challenges. In the terminology of Karl Polanyi, they refuse to be incorporated into the “generalized market system”. Mexico is one of the countries of the world where such social experiments are influential and widespread.

The 2018 ISEE conference invites colleagues examining the problems facing the international community to explore solutions with others engaged in strengthening the myriad of socio-ecological grassroots organizations. By focusing on such interactions among these different communities, we hope to contribute to our goals advancing our understanding of today’s pressing problems while exploring solutions offered by people outside of the traditional circles of influence. In academic terms, we search at the same time for a cross-fertilization between ecological economics and political ecology, ethnoecology, agroecology, energy systems.

Within this frame of reference, we invite participants to consider organizing their contributions to the discussion within the following general themes:

  1. Ecological Economies: How does transdisciplinarity respond to diverse socio-ecological contexts?
  2. Applications of concepts built from the bottom-up: ecological debt and others
  3. Ecosystem services, biodiversity conservation, biophysical measurements, metabolisms
  4. Valuation languages and tools of measurement: legal and social processes; incentive instruments; multi-criteria evaluation.
  5. Energy transitions
  6. Social and environmental conflicts; environmental justice
  7. The economy of care and eco-feminist economics
  8. Imaging future societies: What does “Good living” mean?
  9. Ecological macro-economics: prosperity without growth; degrowth; and other ideas
  10. Feeding 9 billion humans: Food security or food sovereignty?; rural-urban transitions.
  11. Measuring and acting in view of globally diverse inequities: gender, indigenous rights, environmental space appropriation, etc.
  12. Ecological Economics as a paradigm to support grassroots alternatives: agroecology, solidarity economies and markets, alternative currencies, workers’ control.

We are planning to organize an intensive retreat for training in and discussion of basic principles in Ecological Economics and related themes in a nearby rural community during the weekend before the conference.

The formal call for proposals and papers will be distributed in September 2017; the website for proposals for sessions, panels and papers will be opened in January 2018 with a closing date in March 2018.  For enquires and support in the organization of the event, please write us at ISEE2018@correo.xoc.uam.mx.

6th International Symposium on Environment and Energy Finance Issues (ISEFI-2018)

The 6th International Symposium on Environment and Energy Finance Issues (ISEFI-2018), jointly organized by the IPAG Center for Energy Economics and Environment (IPAG Business School) and the Centre of Geopolitics of Energy and Raw Materials (Paris Dauphine University) with the support of the International Association for Energy Economics (IAEE), will take place on 24-26 May 2018 in Paris, France. It aims to provide academics, policymakers, and practitioners with a valuable forum for discussion and critical analysis of the major issues and challenges that interrelate energy, environment, macroeconomics and financial markets.

TOPICS

The conference organizers would like to invite the submission of both theoretical and empirical papers (in PDF files) relating to all aspects of environment, and energy markets as well as their interactions with financial markets such as climate negotiations and scenarios for a +2° world, corporate finance analysis for energy companies, econometrics of energy markets, energy and climate models, energy and environment, energy policies for low carbon transportation, energy risks: assessment and modeling, financial regulation of energy and environmental markets, intergenerational choices under global environmental change, and natural resources, risk, welfare and social preferences. See the conference website for more details: http://isefi.sciencesconf.org/.

KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

  • Professor Robert Pindyck, MIT Sloan School of Management, United States
  • Professor Rick van der Ploeg, University of Oxford & Research Director of the Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, United KingdomORGANIZERS
    • Anna Creti (co-chair), University of Paris Dauphine
    • Khaled Guesmi (co-chair), IPAG Business School
    • Lutz Kilian (co-chair), University of Michigan
    • Duc Khuong Nguyen, IPAG Business School
    • Ingmar Schumacher, IPAG Business School
  • Eric Strobl, University of Bern
  • Cees Withagen, IPAG Business School & VU University

PAPER SUBMISSION PROCEDURE

Interested authors can submit their research papers (in PDF files), no later than March 4, 2018 via the Symposium website: https://isefi.sciencesconf.org/submission/submit

SPECIAL ISSUE

A selection of high-quality papers submitted to the ISEFI-2018 Symposium will be published in Special Issues of Associated Journals (to be announced as soon as possible).

IMPORTANT DATES

  • March 4, 2018: Submission deadline (full papers, PDF files)
  • March 25, 2018: Notification of acceptance/rejection
  • April 22, 2018: Registration deadline
  • May 24-26, 2018: Symposium event

Andrew J. Senti Endowed Assistant Professorship of Ecosystem Services

Utah State University
Quinney College of Natural Resources
Department of Environment and Society

POSITION ANNOUNCEMENT

Andrew J. Senti Endowed Assistant Professorship of Ecosystem Services

The Department of Environment and Society (ENVS) at Utah State University (USU) invites applications for an endowed, tenure-track faculty position in Ecosystem Services at the rank of Assistant Professor. This is a permanent, full-time (nine-month) appointment based at the USU main campus in Logan.  The position is weighted as 50% research, 40% teaching/advising, and 10% service.  The start date is August 1, 2018. The title of the position will change to the Andrew J. Senti Endowed Chair of Ecosystem Services when promotion and tenure to Associate Professor is achieved.

Position Summary:  We seek an innovative, inter-disciplinary scholar with a strong background in human-environment interactions who has interest in policy-relevant work concerning ecosystem services in both managed and natural settings.  Important research applications could include public land management, water systems management, agroecosystem assessments, or sustainable urban development.  A focus on dynamic natural-resource issues relevant to Utah and the Intermountain West is a priority.  Cultural ecosystem services could also be a vital aspect of research given the diverse attributes of outdoor recreation in public spaces.  Other relevant fields for intellectual integration include political ecology and ecological economics.  Analytical tools such as geospatial analysis and systems modeling would be very useful for the types of broad-scaled inquiry that are envisioned.  Successful research program development will also involve recruiting, supporting, and training graduate students.  Teaching will include up to three courses per academic year with  undergraduate and graduate instructional assignments.  Topics may include environmental and natural resource policy, land use, or other offerings within the faculty member’s area of expertise.  Courses may be delivered face-to-face, via distance learning, or in blended formats.  The service component includes participation in professional endeavors on and off campus.  This includes involvement in university governance or supervisory committee assignments and providing assistance to scholarly societies or natural-resource management and policy entities.

Minimum Qualifications:  Candidates must have an earned doctorate at the date-of-hire in a field relevant to ecosystem services.  They should have a publication record consistent with their career stage, and be able to show the potential to build and maintain a productive research program, including the ability to secure competitive external funding.  Because large-scale research involves interdisciplinary teams, candidates must have the ability and willingness to collaborate effectively, and sometimes lead, on projects involving a diverse array of scholars.  In addition, applied research requires collaboration with governmental and non-governmental groups off campus.  Excellent skills in communication, mentoring, teamwork, problem-solving, and collaborative leadership are required for success.

Preferred Qualifications: The following attributes are not required but are advantageous: postdoctoral research experience; experience conducting relevant work in arid or semi-arid environments; experience working with interdisciplinary research teams; genuine interest in natural-resource management challenges of the Intermountain West; prior teaching experience; and the ability and willingness to offer instruction via distance-education methods.
Utah State University Highlights: USU is a public Land- and Space-grant research, teaching, and Extension institution founded in 1888 (https://www.usu.edu/). The Department of Environment and Society in the Quinney College of Natural Resources conducts research and offers degrees in fields that include ecology, environmental studies, geography, sustainable systems, and recreation resources management (https://qcnr.usu.edu/envs/). Many  opportunities exist for collaboration within the Department, College, and University.

USU has an enrollment of 28,000 that includes 3,280 graduate students.  About 17,900 students are at the main campus in Logan.  Logan offers the amenities of a college town within the Cache Valley metropolitan zone; the local population is around 115,000 ( http://www.loganutah.org/).  Logan is a 90-minute drive north of Salt Lake City.  Positioned within the scenic mountain landscapes of northern Utah, the region offers many outdoor activities (e.g., biking, hiking, camping, fishing, snow sports) within a few minutes of campus.  Cache Valley is also within a day’s drive of eight national parks, numerous national monuments and state parks, and vast expanses of publicly owned rangeland and forest. USU is classified as a Carnegie research university having high research activity.  Sponsored research awards for USU during 2016 exceeded $240 million with an upward trend, placing it at or near the top of comparisons with peer institutions.  USU has heavily invested in programs to mentor and support junior faculty in grantsmanship and teaching arenas (http://rgs.usu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Faculty-Senate-Report-2016.pdf).

USU is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity (AA/EO) employer, dedicated to recruiting stellar candidates from a diverse pool including women, minorities, veterans, and persons with disabilities.  USU is sensitive to the needs of dual-career applicants and offers competitive salaries with outstanding medical, retirement, and professional benefits.

Candidates should apply at: https://usu.hiretouch.com/job-details?jobid=2712.

12-month Postdoc Great Lakes Restoration Initiative

The Department of Geography and Environmental Studies at Central Michigan University is looking to fill a 12-month postdoctoral position (to be extended to 18 month based on contingent funding). The successful applicant will be dedicated to mixed-methods analysis, publishing, and outreach related to an interdisciplinary research project investigating and modelling the socioecological and economic benefits of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI), the flagship restoration federal program for the U.S. Great Lakes. The project is supported by the C.S. Mott Foundation, and pursued in collaboration with partners at the University of Michigan, and the Great Lakes Commission. In addition to this main role, the post offers the opportunity to work on the applicant’s research, developing her/his own research agenda in the transdisciplinary, and active research environment of both the Department of Geography & Environmental Studies and the Institute for Great Lakes Research, the premiere research Institute for research on the U.S. Great Lakes.

For a detailed description of the post, please see: https://www.jobs.cmich.edu/postings/26618

Blog Post: Can We Stop the Advance of Climate Change While Growing the Global Economy?

Originally posted at https://elgar.blog/2017/08/22/can-we-stop-the-advance-of-climate-change-while-growing-the-global-economy/

Brett Dolter and Peter Victor discuss growing the global economy and combatting climate change.

Climate change is a “super wicked problem” (Levin et al., 2012). Stopping the rise of global temperatures requires complete decarbonization of our energy system. This shift will upend existing power structures, and disrupt habits and behavioural norms. To add to the challenge, climate change action requires co-operation amongst countries with competing interests, and demands social support for actions that impose costs on citizens today, but will provide benefits primarily to generations not yet born.

In Paris, we saw an emerging commitment to global co-operation as nations around the world pledged to reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (UNFCCC, 2015). Nearly two years later, however, researchers have confirmed that “No major advanced industrialized country is on track to meet its (Paris) pledges to control the greenhouse-gas emissions that cause climate change” (Victor et al. 2017).

One characteristic of the “super wicked problem” that is climate change is that “those seeking to end the problem are also causing it” (Levin et al., 2012: 127). We know that every economic transaction requires materials and energy. In a world where our energy system is powered predominantly by fossil fuels, that means every economic transaction creates GHG emissions directly, or indirectly in its supply chain (Dolter & Victor, 2016). Even purchases from the service sector – for example, visiting a masseuse or a barber – generate embodied or shadow GHG emissions (Dolter & Victor, 2016).

In this context, several researchers in the new Handbook on Growth and Sustainability (Victor & Dolter, 2017) have asked, can we address climate change while growing our economy?

The tension between economic growth and reducing GHG emissions can be expressed using the Kaya Identity, which decomposes changes to GHG emissions in terms of its component parts: changes to population, changes to economic activity per capita (GDP/capita), changes to the energy intensity of economic activity (Energy/GDP), and changes to the GHG intensity of energy (GHG/Energy),

Kaya Identity

Globally, GDP/capita and population have been increasing, while the energy intensity of the economy (Energy/GDP) and the GHG intensity of energy (GHG/energy) have been declining. A complete decarbonization of global energy systems would zero out the first term on the right-hand-side of the Kaya Identity (GHG/Energy = 0), reducing GHG emissions to zero, and helping to stabilize concentrations of GHGs in the atmosphere.[1] But, decarbonization of our energy system will not happen overnight. In the meantime, if global GHG emissions are to be reduced, GHG/Energy and Energy/GDP must decline faster than GDP/capita and population grow.

In western liberal democracies, we generally do not look to population control as a solution to climate change, and, in any case, the rate of population growth in rich nations has been declining for decades.[2] This means the race is between GDP growth (GDP/capita), and efforts to decarbonize the energy system (GHG/Energy) and achieve more energy efficiency economic production (Energy/GDP).

Paul Ekins (2017) argues that we can help steer our economy towards low-carbon technologies by implementing a steadily increasing carbon price. In his Handbook chapter, he points to economic modelling studies that show that GDP can continue to grow, while GHG emissions fall and atmospheric GHG concentrations stabilize. Achieving GHG emissions reductions will mean shifting economic activity away from consumption and towards investment. It may be politically difficult to convince voters to support deferred consumption, but, “because economic growth is so attractive to so many people” Ekins argues that promising green growth will make climate action more appetizing to the electorate (Ekins, 2017: P.134).

Anders Hayden (2017) is less convinced of the potential to square the growth and sustainability circle. Hayden (2017) outlines several issues with the kinds of economic modelling studies cited by Ekins (2017): they assume perfect market conditions, ignore technological lock-in, ignore rebound effects from achieving energy efficiency, and often rely on untested carbon dioxide removal (CDR) technologies that allow us to overshoot our GHG emissions targets, only to reach them later by removing CO2 from the atmosphere. Rather than continuing to promote economic growth (even if green), Hayden argues we should be promoting an “ethic of sufficiency” so that “the ecological imperative of addressing climate change and other environmental challenges is no longer held back by the perceived imperative of endless economic growth” (2017: pp. 139, 154)

The Handbook on Growth and Sustainability provides additional perspectives on whether we can stop the advance of climate change while growing the global economy. Daly (2017) argues for a steady-state, non-growing economy. Sekulova et al. (2017) suggest that rich nations should now focus on degrowth. van den Bergh (2017) proposes an agrowth view that we should be agnostic about economic growth, and instead measure social progress with a broader swath of indicators. The Handbook then goes beyond this debate to explore what our economy and society could look like if we opted to dethrone economic growth from its place as the primary goal of social policy.

The release of the Handbook is timely. Raftery et al. (2017) recently concluded that we have only a 5% chance of limiting global warming to 2°C by 2100. Using the Kaya Identity framework and statistical analysis of past and likely future trends, they conclude that the carbon intensity of economic activity (will likely decline by 1.9%/yr, but these improvements will largely be cancelled out by likely economic growth of 1.8%/yr (Raftery et al., 2017: 3).

This finding suggests that, in the most likely scenarios, we will not halt climate change while growing the economy. While challenging the primacy of economic growth may create new wicked problems, failing to solve the super wicked problem that is climate change will be catastrophic. It is our hope that the 23 chapters in the Handbook on Growth and Sustainability help to clarify whether we can stop the advance of climate change while growing the global economy, and, if not, how we might achieve well-being without growth.


[1] To completely stabilize atmospheric concentrations of GHGs, emissions in non-energy sectors like agriculture must also be reduced to zero or near-zero (allowing for some carbon sequestration in forests and oceans).

[2] Population growth is also not believed to be a major impediment to reducing GHG emissions globally (Raftery et al., 2017). This assumes, however, that areas with high population growth such as Sub-Saharan Africa, continue to stay poor. It also assumes that those living in poverty don’t exacerbate climate change by, for example, harvesting fuelwood from forests and contributing to deforestation. One reason for questioning economic growth in rich nations is to free up ecological space and resources to allow for poverty alleviation in poor nations.


References

Daly, Herman (2017) “A New Economics for Our Full World.” In (Eds.) Victor, Peter and Brett Dolter The Handbook on Growth and Sustainability. Edward Elgar: Cheltenham, MA.

Dolter, Brett and Peter A. Victor (2016) “Casting a long shadow: Demand-based accounting of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions responsibility.” Ecological Economics. 127, pp. 156-164. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2016.04.013.

Ekins, Paul (2017) “Ecological Modernisation and Green Growth: Prospects and Potential.” In (Eds.) Victor, Peter and Brett Dolter The Handbook on Growth and Sustainability. Edward Elgar: Cheltenham, MA.

Hayden, Anders (2017) “Climate Change, Growth, and Sustainability.” In (Eds.) Victor, Peter and Brett Dolter The Handbook on Growth and Sustainability. Edward Elgar: Cheltenham, MA.

Levin, Kelly, Benjamin Cashore, Steven Bernstein, and Graeme Auld (2012) “Overcoming the tragedy of super wicked problems: constraining our future selves to ameliorate global climate change.” Policy Sciences. 45, pp. 123-152. DOI: 10.1007/s11077-012-9151-0.

UNFCCC (2015) Paris Agreement. Available on-line at: http://unfccc.int/files/essential_background/convention/application/pdf/english_paris_agreement.pdf. Last accessed August 4, 2017.

Raftery, Adrian E., Alec Zimmer, Dargan M.W. Frierson, Richard Startz, and Peiran Liu (2017) “Less than 2°C warming by 2100 unlikely.” Nature Climate Change. DOI: 10.1038/NCLIMATE3352.

van den Bergh, Jeroen C.J.M. (2017) “Green Agrowth: Removing the GDP-Growth Constraint on Human Progress.” In (Eds.) Victor, Peter and Brett Dolter The Handbook on Growth and Sustainability. Edward Elgar: Cheltenham, MA.

Victor, David G., Keigo Akimoto, Yoichi Kaya, Mitsutsune Yamaguchi, Danny Cullenward & Cameron Hepburn (2017) “Prove Paris was more than paper promises.” Nature, August 1, 2017. Available on-line at: http://www.nature.com/news/prove-paris-was-more-than-paper-promises-1.22378.

Victor, Peter and Brett Dolter (Eds.) (2017) The Handbook on Growth and Sustainability. Edward Elgar: Cheltenham, MA.


Peter A. Victor, Professor, York University and Brett Dolter, Post-doctoral Research Fellow, University of Ottawa, Canada

W3-Professorship ‘Biodiversity Economics’

Integrated in iDiv, the Leipzig University, Germany, offers the following position at the Faculty of Economics and Management Science:
W3-Professorship ‘Biodiversity Economics’
Application deadline: 15 October 2017

Integrative biodiversity research is interdisciplinary at heart, bridging different disciplines like biology, ecology, forestry, agriculture, economics, and social sciences. In contrast to classical ecology, it recognizes ecosystems as complex socio-ecological systems where humans impact on as well as manage and obtain benefits from biodiversity. This requires a transdisciplinary program linking scientists to practitioners and decision-makers. The importance of engaging different disciplines in biodiversity assessments is increasingly recognized, and thus, it is also reflected in the work of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). In particular, economics has been providing important contributions in fields such as ecological-economic modeling, valuation of biodiversity, financial mechanisms to conserve biodiversity, policy instruments and governance of biodiversity management, among others. At the same time, evolutionary economists have started to adopt and develop theory on fundamental ecological and evolutionary concepts that are common to both economic and biological systems, such as diversity, stability, and facilitation. Further integration of economics and biology to understand the common underpinning of social and ecology systems is emerging as major research frontier, to address not only questions at the interface of both fields, but also to promote cross-fertilization of economics and ecological theory. The German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) provides a unique environment to address this research frontier. Therefore, we are opening a professorship in Biodiversity Economics hosted by iDiv and affiliated with the Faculty of Economics and Management Science at Leipzig University.

iDiv is a world-leading institute for integrative biodiversity research. Its central mission is to promote theory-driven synthesis and data-driven theory in integrative biodiversity research. The concept of iDiv encompasses the detection of biodiversity, understanding its emergence, exploring its consequences for ecosystem functions and services, and developing strategies to safeguard biodiversity under global change (www.idiv.de).

https://www.idiv.de/fileadmin/content/Vacancies_PDF/Vacancies_2017/170810_iDiv_Ausschreibung_W3_Biodiversitaetsoekonomik.pdf

UCS at ESA

Several members of the Union of Concerned Scientists Food & Environment team will be going to the Ecological Society of America (ESA) Annual Meeting in Portland, and we’d love to meet you! Here’s where you’ll be able to find us:

  • UCS Networking Happy Hour: Join us on Wednesday, August 9 from 5:30 – 7:30pm for a happy hour at Spirit of 77 Bar, 500 NE Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. Appetizers and a complimentary drink will be provided, and Ricardo Salvador, Director of the Food & Environment Program, will offer brief remarks. Please RSVP here.
  • Visit our booth: Stop by booth #503 to speak with UCS staff and scientists, pick up copies of our latest reports, preview the recently released Special Issue of Agroecology and Food Systems, and find out about how you can join our efforts to put rigorous, independent science to work to solve our planet’s most pressing problems.
  • Attend our panel: On Tuesday, August 8 at 10:10am, Marcia DeLonge, Senior Scientist in the Food & Environment Program, will present her talk, “Ecological and societal impacts of transitioning to more sustainable agroecosystem management: The case of beef production systems.” Find us in room B112 to hear about the ways that conventional cropping systems that support beef production could be redesigned based on agroecological principles.
  • Join us for coffee: Want to hear more about what the Food & Environment team is up to? Email Leslie Morrison (lmorrison@ucsusa.org) to set up a time to grab coffee and learn about how we’re fighting for a more sustainable food and farming system under this administration.

You can see a full list of UCS events at ESA at this link.

Transforming the Economy for a Just and Sustainable World