After more than 40 years of collaboration, the University of Wisconsin-Madison and IIASA have established a formal partnership on a variety of policy-relevant projects related to energy, climate, air quality, and more.

The IIASA/UW-Madison Partnership is a collaborative program that formalizes the long-term relationship between these two premier research institutions in the areas of energy, climate, and environment, with the goal to enhance education, research, and the role of science in diplomacy and international understanding.

At IIASA, the partnership will be led by Transformative Institutional and Social Solutions Research Group leader, Shonali Pachauri, under the umbrella of the IIASA Energy, Climate, and Environment Program.

“We are delighted and energized by this new chapter of a longstanding relationship between IIASA and UW,” she says. “It provides new impetus and opportunities for scientific exchange and capacity enhancement on themes in the energy, climate, and environment realm that are of mutual interest and policy relevant.”

From UW Madison’s side, the partnership will be hosted within the Nelson Institute Energy Analysis and Policy (EAP) Program. The funding of the partnership is made possible thanks to a generous donation from EAP co-founder, Wes Foell, and allows for organizing joint seminars or webinars, jointly working on research proposals and publications, and some scientific exchanges in the form of short visits both ways. In fact, the first official IIASA and UW-Madison partnership event took place on 23 November 2021, when IIASA and EAP hosted a webinar to discuss the outcomes of COP26 and their implications for climate action around the world. This followed a more informal flash talk webinar that was held on 21 July 2021 to highlight some key research focus areas common to both partners.

Nelson Institute affiliate and La Follette School of Public Affairs professor, Greg Nemet, leads the partnership on behalf of EAP.

“The IIASA/UW EAP Initiative is exciting. I have been working with IIASA continuously since 2004 when I joined as a summer graduate student,” he says in an article on the UW website. “I am currently working with IIASA on an EU-funded project on negative emissions and a Japanese-funded project on energy efficiency. There are terrific scientists at IIASA with whom I enjoy working and I am excited about bringing others, especially EAP students, into the collaboration.”

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