11 March 2019 - 13 March 2019
Denver, Colorado, USA

Scenarios for climate and societal futures

IIASA scientists will present research and policy analyses related to climate change and sustainability at the Scenarios Forum 2019 at the University of Denver.

© Photoquest | Dreamstime

© Photoquest | Dreamstime

The goal of the Scenarios Forum is to bring together a diverse set of communities who are using or developing scenarios for use in climate change and sustainability analysis to exchange experiences, ideas, and lessons learned; to identify opportunities for synergies and collaboration; and to identify knowledge gaps for future research.

By taking stock of progress and facilitating further scenario-related research, this meeting will inform the use of scenarios in the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). It will also help ensure a research base sufficient to inform future national and international assessments as well as policy initiatives, including the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

IIASA has a longstanding history in developing and using scenarios for climate change and sustainability. The institute played a central role in the development of the Scenarios Framework and co-coordinated the quantification of the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs). IIASA hosts the community databases for the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs) and Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) in collaboration with the Integrated Assessment Modelling Consortium.

About 20 IIASA researchers, 16 IIASA alumni (including 11 participants of the Young Scientists Summer Program), and IIASA National Member Organization Secretary for Germany, Hermann Lotze-Campen will contribute to the forum by organizing sessions and presenting recent studies. 

IIASA participation: 

Sunday 10 March 2019:

14:30 - 16:00 Pre-conference tutorial on the scenario framework:

Using the SSPs for research, assessment, and decision-making

Monday  11 March 2019 

Parallel Sessions 1:

Improving the SSPs to assess the Sustainable Development Goals - Part 1

Co-organized by Keywan Riahi, ENE

Deconstructing demographic futures: population dynamics in the Shared-Socioeconomic Pathways

New nitrogen scenarios using the SSPs

Co-organized by Wilfried Winiwarter, IIASA Air Quality and Greenhouse Gases Program (AIR)

  • 13:45 Joy Burns Center 231, Developing Nitrogen scenarios: integrating stakeholder views: Presentation by Wilfried Winiwarter

Scientific assessment of scenario-based research

Parallel Sessions 2:

Improving the SSPs to assess the Sustainable Development Goals - Part 2

Co-organized by Keywan Riahi,

Overshoot scenarios for Paris Agreement temperature targets: an interdisciplinary perspective 

Co-organized by and Michael Obersteiner, ESM and Johannes Bednar, ESM 

Use of scenarios for assessing climate-related financial risk and opportunity 

Tuesday 12 March 2019 

Parallel Sessions 3:

Extending the SSPs across space and time: Multi-scale scenario development practices 

Scenarios for climate extremes and their socio-economic impact

Co-organized by Reinhard Mechler, IIASA Risk and Resilience Program (RISK)

Urban futures under the new scenario framework 

Parallel Sessions 4:

Cost of climate change impact and the use of scenarios

Use of scenarios in IPCC’s 6th assessment cycle (AR6) 

  • 14:30-14:42 Joy Burns Center 229, Role of scenarios for main findings in the Special Report on 1.5 C: Presentation by Joeri Rogelj, ENE

Inequality and poverty, projections and distributional consequences for climate

Parallel Sessions 5:

Use of the SSP-RCP scenario framework in climate impact analysis, including avoided impacts 

Sub-national scenarios for integrated modeling and analyses 

Scenarios for tracking progress in international climate policy

Organized by Joeri Rogelj 

Parallel Sessions 6:

Wednesday 13 March 2019.

Scenarios for assessing human vulnerability to extreme events and climate change at the local and regional level 

  • 10:05-10:18 Sie Complex Room 1020, Forecasting societies’ adaptive capacities through a demographic metabolism model: Presentation by Raya Muttarak, POP 

The role of short-lived climate forcers in future scenarios 

Extending the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways for Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability research 

Forum on Scenarios for Climate and Societal Futures

The Forum on Scenarios for Climate and Societal Futures fills the critical need for researchers from various communities to come together to share their experiences, progress, and plans. The Forum provides a key means of promoting integration across the climate modeling, integrated assessment, and impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability communities, as well as with additional research communities in the social, natural, and sustainability sciences. The Forum also aims to improve linkages among the research, assessment, and policy communities.

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Last edited: 11 March 2019


Bas van Ruijven

Research Group Leader

Sustainable Service Systems Research Group|Energy


and Environment Program

T +43(0) 2236 807 288


Raya Muttarak

Program Director:Acting Research Group Leader

Population and Just Societies Program|Migration and Sustainable Development Research Group

T +43(0) 2236 807 329

Forum on Scenarios for Climate and Societal Futures

International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
Schlossplatz 1, A-2361 Laxenburg, Austria
Phone: (+43 2236) 807 0 Fax:(+43 2236) 71 313