IIASA News

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2021

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23 June 2021
A novel energy storage solution featuring pipes and anchors

What do pipes and anchors have to do with storing energy? More than you might think! A new IIASA-led study explored the potential of a lesser known, but promising sustainable energy storage system called Buoyancy Energy Storage.  More

22 June 2021
What Facebook can tell us about dietary choices

Lifestyle changes for demand-side climate change mitigation is gaining more and more importance and attention. A new IIASA-led study set out to understand the full potential of behavior change and what drives such changes in people’s choices across the world using data from almost two billion Facebook profiles.  More

17 June 2021
Supporting sustainable development in the agricultural sector

IIASA, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), and the Environmental System Research Institute (ESRI) are proud to announce the launch of version 4 of the Global Agro-Ecological Zones platform (GAEZ v4) – a research tool that supports sustainable development in the agricultural sector – on the occasion of the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought.  More

16 June 2021
Finding pathways for sustainable development in Africa

A new project funded under the Belmont Forum’s joint Collaborative Research Action on Pathways to Sustainability will develop novel tools and capacities to understand and manage interlinkages between the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and support sustainable development pathways for African countries, tailored to local capacities and priorities.  More

15 June 2021
Accessing the latest climate impact science just got easier

Do you have a clear picture of what science says about past and future impacts of climate change in your country? Do you know how this knowledge has been generated and how reliable it is? The newly released open climate impacts encyclopedia ISIpedia was designed to provide state-of-the-art climate impact information by translating the latest climate impact science into understandable and informative texts.  More

07 June 2021
Limiting climate risks for finance: Central banks and science publish scenarios

To improve climate related risk management in the financial sector and facilitate a smooth transition toward a sustainable economy, IIASA researchers joined forces with other scientists and a network of over 60 central banks and financial market supervisors to publish an updated set of scenarios. They show early greenhouse gas emissions reductions can minimize both physical and financial risk - in contrast, delayed action or no action would drive up costs.  More

04 June 2021
To achieve the SDGs, we need better data

IIASA researchers have contributed to a new global campaign that illustrates the centrality of data to sustainable development with a project that uses citizen science to monitor marine litter in Ghana for official UN Sustainable Development Goals reporting.  More

02 June 2021
Assessing the feasibility of transformation pathways for achieving the Paris Climate Agreement

What drives the feasibility of climate scenarios commonly reviewed by organizations like the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)? And can they actually be achieved in practice? A new systematic framework can help understand what to improve in the next generation of scenarios and explore how to make ambitious emission reductions possible by strengthening enabling conditions.  More

27 May 2021
New framework to enhance national climate action and achieve global goals

With the COP Climate conference in Glasgow only a few months away, the ambitions of the Paris Agreement and the importance of taking action at the national level to reach global climate goals is returning to the spotlight. IIASA researchers and colleagues have proposed a novel systematic and independent scenario framework that could help policymakers assess and compare climate policies and long-term strategies across countries to support coordinated global climate action.  More

26 May 2021
Mitigating emissions in the livestock production sector

The farming of livestock to feed the global appetite for animal products greatly contributes to global warming. A new study however shows that emission intensity per unit of animal protein produced from the sector has decreased globally over the past two decades due to greater production efficiency, raising questions around the extent to which methane emissions will change in the future and how we can better manage their negative impacts.  More

21 May 2021
Sebastian Poledna receives Complexity in Macroeconomics award

IIASA Acting Research Group Leader Sebastian Poledna has won a paper competition on the subject of complexity and macroeconomics, organized by the Rebuilding Macroeconomics (RM) Network. The network is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) in the UK, and hosted by the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR), which is the oldest independent economic research institute in the UK.  More

20 May 2021
Accounting for finance is key for climate mitigation pathways

A new study published in the journal Science, highlights the opportunity to complement current climate mitigation scenarios with scenarios that capture the interdependence among investors’ perception of future climate risk, the credibility of climate policies, and the allocation of investments across low- and high-carbon assets in the economy.  More

17 May 2021
Keywan Riahi appointed to ten-member group of the UN Secretary General

The United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, has appointed a new group of ten renowned experts including IIASA Energy, Climate, and Environment Program Director, Keywan Riahi, to support the UN Technology Facilitation Mechanism to bring science into the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  More

17 May 2021
Climate policies, transition risk, and financial stability

The way in which banks react to climate risks and uncertainty could impact financial stability as well as the world’s transition to a low-carbon economy. A new study by researchers from IIASA and the Vienna University of Economics and Business explored the role that banks’ expectations about climate-related risks will play in fostering or hindering an orderly low-carbon transition.  More

06 May 2021
Bringing the impact of nutrient imbalance to global attention

Through combining their expertise, four European Research Council (ERC) grantees have awoken the scientific community to what nutrient imbalances could mean for our planet, and for our species. Their findings could lead the world towards more accurate climate modeling, more equitable policymaking, and more sustainable food production.  More

04 May 2021
The economic benefits of air quality improvements in the Arctic

A new report released by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) assessed the biophysical and economic benefits of air pollution policies in Arctic Council countries. The analysis relied on a suite of modeling tools, including the IIASA GAINS model, to project the impacts of increasingly ambitious policy action up to 2050.  More

03 May 2021
Empowering citizens for successful energy transitions

The terms “co-creation” and “co-production”, which denote the possibility for laypeople to participate in decision-making processes that affect their lives, have been gaining popularity. A new IIASA-led study explored options for empowering citizens as a driver for moving from awareness about the need to transform energy systems to action and participation.  More

26 April 2021
IIASA researchers on the Reuters Hot List of climate scientists

No less than nine IIASA researchers have made it onto the Reuters Hot List – the media giant’s ranking of the world’s most influential climate scientists – with IIASA Energy, Climate, and Environment Program Director, Keywan Riahi, claiming the top spot.  More

05 April 2021
Conceptualizing “safe and just” for the future of the planet and its people

The Earth Commission laid out its approach to defining a “safe and just corridor for people and planet” in a paper published today in Earth’s Future.  More

30 March 2021
New oil palm map to inform policy and landscape-level planning

IIASA researchers have used Sentinel 1 satellite imagery from the European Space Agency to produce a map of the extent and year of detection of oil palm plantations in Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand that will help policymakers and other stakeholders understand trends in oil palm expansion to inform landscape-level planning.  More

22 March 2021
The value of cooperation for sustainable development in transboundary river basins

Can cooperation across sectors and countries help to achieve sustainable development? How do stakeholders in the Indus and Zambezi basins envision the future and how can they make that future a reality? IIASA researchers looked into these questions as part of a large-scale initiative with international partners.  More

19 March 2021
Is it worth investing in solar PV with batteries at home?

Solar energy is a clean, renewable source of electricity that could potentially play a significant part in fulfilling the world’s energy requirements, but there are still some challenges to fully capitalizing on this potential. Researchers looked into some of the issues that hamper the uptake of solar energy and proposed different policies to encourage the use of this technology.  More

19 March 2021
Strengthening water resources planning in East Africa

IIASA researchers worked with local stakeholders from the East African Community to explore and co-develop regional water scenarios that can enhance understanding of the up- and downstream water sector interactions in the extended Lake Victoria Basin to facilitate rational water resource planning.  More

16 March 2021
A new way to measure human wellbeing towards sustainability

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a blueprint to achieve a better life for all and to ensure that no one is left behind. The partly overlapping and contradictory objectives of the SDGs can however make it difficult to assess overall progress. A group of researchers have proposed a new, tailor-made metric that measures development based on long-term human wellbeing.  More

08 March 2021
Sustainable water management key to scaling up bioenergy production

To avoid a substantial increase in water scarcity, biomass plantations for energy production need sustainable water management, a new study shows.  More

24 February 2021
Ending the war on the world

We must urgently transform our relationship with nature, according to a major new UN report.  More

18 February 2021
IIASA joins the Groundwater Solutions Initiative for Policy and Practice (GRIPP)

We are proud to announce that IIASA has joined GRIPP, a global partnership for sustainable groundwater management led by the International Water Management Institute to strengthen, expand, and connect current groundwater research and initiatives.  More

11 February 2021
Raising climate ambitions could save millions of lives

Adopting policies that are consistent with achieving the Paris Agreement and prioritize health, could annually save 6.4 million lives due to healthier diets, 1.6 million lives due to cleaner air, and 2.1 million lives due to increased physical activity, according to new research.  More

09 February 2021
Quality education essential to closing the growing global skills gap

With rapid educational expansion in many developing countries, much progress has been made in terms of access to education. According to a new IIASA-led study, being in school is however not the same as learning and this expansion in quantity may come at the expense of quality, with the possible negative implications of the current COVID-19 pandemic on schooling possibly exacerbating the situation.  More

05 February 2021
Advancing scientific cooperation on pandemic research

IIASA and the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (RFBR) are proud to announce the winners of their joint call for research proposals around the COVID-19 pandemic.  More

03 February 2021
Awards for outstanding young scientists

Four exceptional young scientists from the 2020 Young Scientists Summer Program (YSSP) have been recognized as YSSP awards finalists. Two will receive funding to continue their research projects at IIASA.  More

01 February 2021
How is the digitalization of daily life impacting climate change?

IIASA researcher Charlie Wilson has been awarded a European Research Council (ERC) grant to study how the digitalization of our everyday lives impacts climate change and to explore how it can be steered to help, rather than hinder climate action.  More

25 January 2021
Transformations within reach: Pathways to a sustainable and resilient world

It is clear that COVID-19 has drastically changed our world, but how can we use the lessons learnt to build a more resilient and sustainable future? The International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) and the International Science Council (ISC) have drawn on the combined strengths and expertise of the two organizations to help find a way forward.  More

12 January 2021
Advancing the science of citizen science

Citizen science is increasingly incorporated in research projects, as it has proved extremely effective in many aspects of research from collecting data to verifying information from remote sensing data in the field. A new book on citizen science offers practical support for implementing projects and addresses emerging topics around citizen science and artificial intelligence.  More

07 January 2021
Harnessing the power of crowd-driven artificial intelligence

The European Research Council (ERC) will fund the development of an innovative platform incorporating the IIASA crowdsourcing game Picture Pile. IIASA Strategic Initiatives Program Director Steffen Fritz will lead the project.  More

05 January 2021
Uncovering how grasslands changed our climate

Grasslands are managed worldwide to support livestock production, while remaining natural or semi-natural ones provide critical services that contribute to the wellbeing of both people and the planet. Human activities are however causing grasslands to become a source of greenhouse gas emissions rather than a carbon sink. A new study uncovered how grasslands used by humans have changed our climate over the last centuries.  More

2020

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15 December 2020
Empowering women could help address climate change

Current and future damages of climate change depend greatly on the ability of affected populations to adapt to changing conditions. According to an international group of researchers, building capacity to adapt to such changes will require eradicating inequalities of many sorts, including gender.  More

14 December 2020
Working towards carbon neutrality in China

IIASA researchers contributed to a new report that argues for an integrated economy-wide decarbonization, in which China not only meets its carbon neutrality target, but also achieves a broader vision for growth and development.  More

14 December 2020
Cooperation across boundaries and sectors could boost sustainable development in South Asia

A new analysis of food, energy, water, and climate change in the Indus Basin shows how a cross-boundary and multi-sectoral perspective could lead to economic benefits and lower costs for all countries involved.  More

09 December 2020
Assessing the impacts of global climate change on population trends

The European Research Council (ERC) will fund groundbreaking research led by IIASA World Population Program Deputy Director Raya Muttarak, which will comprehensively address the impacts of climate change on population dynamics.  More

07 December 2020
Are people healthy enough to retire later?

While many people are now enjoying longer, healthier lives, current retirement ages are posing challenges for both policymakers and retirees. A new study looked into whether there is potential to increase the retirement age based on the relationship between working life expectancy and health aspects important for work ability for women and men in Europe.  More

03 December 2020
Pathways to sustainable land use and food systems

The findings of a new report by the Food, Agriculture, Biodiversity, Land-Use, and Energy (FABLE) Consortium, suggest that integrated strategies across food production, biodiversity, climate, and diets can meet the objectives of the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  More

26 November 2020
Monitoring biodiversity and ecosystems in Europe

IIASA is collaborating with 14 partner institutions from Belgium, Bulgaria, Estonia, Germany, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain on a new research project aimed at developing a transnational system for monitoring biodiversity and ecosystems in Europe.  More

25 November 2020
Informing policy for more resilient food systems in West Africa

Even before COVID-19, the threat of climate change was affecting the ability of West African food systems to deliver healthy, sustainable, and nutritious foods. In a recent paper published in Nature Food, an international team of researchers provide evidence-based policy recommendations to support West African governments in reforming food systems to make them more resilient.  More

24 November 2020
Strengthening the climate change scenario framework

Over the past decade, the climate change research community developed a scenario framework that combines alternative futures of climate and society to facilitate integrated research and consistent assessment to inform policy. An international team of researchers assessed how well this framework is working and what challenges it faces.  More

18 November 2020
Nebojsa Nakicenovic appointed to the Group of Chief Scientific Advisors to the European Commission

The European Commission’s Group of Chief Scientific Advisors contribute to the quality of EU legislation through the provision of independent scientific advice to the Commission.  More

18 November 2020
List of Highly Cited Researchers 2020 announced

We are proud to announce that several IIASA researchers have been named on the annual Highly Cited Researchers list from Clarivate.  More

18 November 2020
Tackling the growing challenge of urban air pollution

How can fast growing cities keep air pollution in check? A recent World Bank report highlighting IIASA research explores this tricky question, looking at the kinds of policies and actions cities have taken to tackle poor local air quality, thus providing lessons for other cities.  More

11 November 2020
Yoshihide Wada to receive prestigious Earth and space science award

IIASA Acting Water Program Director Yoshihide Wada has been awarded the American Geophysical Union’s James B. Macelwane Medal 2020, widely considered as the highest honor for early career scientists in the fields of Earth and space science.  More

06 November 2020
Carbon pricing could prompt greener, smarter post-COVID recovery

Countries across the globe have been struggling to deal with the impact of COVID-19 and the accompanying economic slowdown. As economies “build back better”, it may be an opportune time to introduce carbon pricing to tackle climate change while generating socioeconomic benefits, according to new interdisciplinary policy research by philosophers and economists.  More

05 November 2020
Combatting climate change – how to best use new technologies?

A new grant from the European Research Council (ERC) will fund an international research project on negative emissions technologies. IIASA Energy Program Director Keywan Riahi is one of the project leaders.  More

29 October 2020
Air pollution implications of re-shaping future energy pathways

Amid deep disruption and uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, a surge in well-designed energy policies is essential in forging a resilient energy system equipped to meet global climate goals as well as air quality standards.  More

22 October 2020
Hotspots Explorer makes climate risk research accessible

IIASA, the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, and the Global Environment Facility have launched an interactive online mapping tool that allows the public and policymakers to easily explore overlapping and interconnected climate risks around the world.  More

22 October 2020
Informing the next generation of biodiversity goals

According to an international team of researchers, a ‘safety net’ made up of multiple, interlinked and ambitious goals is needed to tackle nature’s alarming decline.  More

19 October 2020
A renewable solution to keep cool in a warming world

Month-on-month, year-on-year, the world continues to experience record high temperatures. In response to this and exacerbated by a growing global population, it is expected that air-conditioning demand will continue to rise. A new IIASA-led study explored the pros and cons of seawater air-conditioning as an alternative cooling solution.  More

15 October 2020
Fraction of COVID-19 recovery funds could boost climate efforts

Global stimulus plans for economic recovery after the pandemic could easily cover climate-friendly policies, suggests new study.  More

14 October 2020
Pinpointing high impact areas for ecosystem restoration

As the world focuses on the dual crises of climate change and biodiversity loss, a new landmark study pinpoints the ecosystems that should be restored for the biggest climate and biodiversity benefits at the lowest cost. According to the authors, restoration can potentially be 13 times more cost-effective when it takes place in the highest priority locations.  More

07 October 2020
Investment in conservation efforts needs to be stepped up

National governments have fallen well short of their conservation commitments under the global nature conservation treaty, the Convention on Biological Diversity. An international consortium of scientists has conducted a global review of area-based conservation efforts, including both protected areas and other effective area-based conservation measures.  More

07 October 2020
Global food production poses an increasing climate threat

According to the authors of a new study published in Nature, rising nitrous oxide emissions are putting reaching climate goals and the objectives of the Paris Agreement in jeopardy.  More

06 October 2020
Climate-friendly cooling to help ease global warming

A new IIASA-led study shows that coordinated international action on energy-efficient, climate-friendly cooling could avoid as much as 600 billion tonnes CO2 equivalent of greenhouse gas emissions in this century.  More

05 October 2020
Decent living for all does not have to cost the Earth

Global energy consumption in 2050 could be reduced to the levels of the 1960s and still provide a decent standard of living for a population three times larger, according to a new study.  More

29 September 2020
Achieving clean air for all is possible

Air pollution is currently the largest environmental risk factor for human health globally and can be linked to several million cases of premature deaths every year. A new study however shows that it is possible to achieve clean air worldwide with fundamental transformations of today’s practices in many sectors, supported by strong political will.  More

28 September 2020
Science and Art: Supporting transformations to sustainability

A unique IIASA report on science and art shows how partnerships between artists and scientists can support transformations to a more sustainable future.  More

21 September 2020
Advancing the accurate tracking of energy poverty

IIASA researchers have developed a novel measurement framework to track energy poverty that better aligns with the services people lack rather than capturing the mere absence of physical connections to a source of electricity. This alternative framework can aid better tracking of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7 by virtue of its simplicity and sensitivity to the diversity in service conditions among the poor.  More

17 September 2020
COVID-19 could cause declines in life expectancy in 2020 in severely affected areas

A new analysis of period life expectancy around the world shows that the COVID-19 pandemic could cause a short-term decline in life expectancy in many regions of the world.  More

14 September 2020
Climate change triggers migration

Environmental hazards affect populations worldwide and can drive migration under specific conditions, especially in middle-income and agricultural countries. According to a new study, changes in temperature levels, increased rainfall variability, and rapid-onset disasters such as tropical storms play an important role in this regard.  More

10 September 2020
Bending the curve of biodiversity loss

Plant and animal species across the world are steadily disappearing due to human activity. A major new IIASA-led study suggests that without ambitious, integrated action combining conservation and restoration efforts with a transformation of the food system, turning the tide of biodiversity loss by 2050 or earlier will not be possible.  More

04 September 2020
Research Group Leadership

As part of the implementation of the new strategy IIASA has made some further research leadership appointments. The research group leaders in each Program will provide research oversight and management of their respective groups and facilitate the functioning of program directors.  More

05 August 2020
New leadership appointments to support strategic research objectives

In 2021, IIASA will embark on a new strategy, which will develop and apply systems science to support transformations to sustainability. Michael Kuhn and Steffen Fritz will join the scientific leadership team that will address the institute’s research priorities to ensure that program objectives are aligned with the new IIASA strategy and institute values.  More

03 August 2020
Evaluating the effectiveness of travel bans

With the reopening of flights during the summer holiday season in Europe, many countries have started to see an increase in COVID-19 infections. A new IIASA-led study sheds light on how COVID-19 spreads regionally and between countries, as well as on how effective governmental measures to curb the spread of the pandemic have been to date.  More

21 July 2020
Making comprehensive water resources modeling more accessible

A new large-scale, open source hydrological and water resources model developed at IIASA will support and enable different stakeholder groups and scientific communities to engage with a hydrological model and support their investigations.  More

20 July 2020
Free trade can prevent hunger caused by future shifts in climate patterns

An international team of researchers investigated the effects of trade on hunger in the world as a result of climate induced crop yield changes. The conclusion is encouraging: international trade can compensate for regional reductions in agricultural production and reduce hunger when protectionist measures and other barriers to trade are eliminated.  More

15 July 2020
Limiting CO2 emissions is not enough, methane must also be reduced

An international team of researchers working under the auspices of the Global Carbon Project has found that global methane emissions increased by 9% (or approximately 50 million tonnes) between 2000-2006 and 2017, and that manmade emissions are responsible for the majority of this increase.  More

09 July 2020
Jordan joins IIASA as a prospective member

The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan has joined IIASA as a prospective member through the Royal Scientific Society of Jordan.  More

08 July 2020
When is someone old?

Populations around the world are living longer lives than was the norm just a few decades ago, presenting governments with significant challenges in terms of caring for their growing elderly populations. According to a new study published in PLOS ONE, understanding how to assess who is elderly is a crucial first step for our understanding of population aging.  More

06 July 2020
Innovations for sustainability in a post-pandemic future

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrust the world into turmoil and disrupted the status quo, but it is also providing opportunities for innovation in the way we live and work. According to the latest report released by The World in 2050 (TWI2050) initiative, the crisis can provide an opportunity to create sustainable societies with higher levels of wellbeing for all.  More

03 July 2020
Closing the gap: Citizen science to monitor sustainable development

Citizen science could help track progress towards all 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). An IIASA-led study, for the first time, comprehensively analyzed the current and potential contribution of citizen science data to monitor the SDGs at the indicator level.  More

26 June 2020
Planning for a growing elderly population

The fact that people are living longer lives represents one of the crowning achievements of the last century, but also requires careful planning on the part of governments. A new IIASA study investigated the prevalence of activity limitations among older adults in 23 low- and middle-income countries, to help policymakers prepare for the challenges associated with the world’s aging population.  More

24 June 2020
New scenarios to help global finance go green

A key role of central banks is to strive for financial stability. To assess climate destabilization risks, major central banks and supervisors plan to utilize a new set of climate scenarios developed by an international team of researchers.  More

22 June 2020
Earth Challenge 2020: Calling on citizens to help support global food supply

IIASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) in partnership with the Wilson Center, the Earth Day Network and the US State Department are providing citizens with an opportunity to get involved in one of the world’s most challenging problems: how to provide enough, high quality, nutritious food to the ever expanding global population.  More

19 June 2020
Matching-commitment agreements to incentivize climate action

Many countries are failing to comply with the non-binding commitments of the Paris Agreement, making it increasingly clear that we have to reconsider how to ensure collective action to limit global warming to less than 2°C above preindustrial levels. A new IIASA-led study supports a different approach to designing an international climate agreement that would incentivize countries to cooperate.  More

19 June 2020
Coronavirus: a wake-up call to strengthen the global food system

A new commentary in the journal One Earth highlights not only climate-related risks to the global food system, such as drought and floods, but also exposes the coronavirus pandemic as a shock to the system that has led to food crises in many parts of the world. To address the challenges of a globally interconnected food system, a systems approach is required.  More

16 June 2020
Homo sapiens literata - the brainpower for sustainable development

Universal education - particularly of women - has been a fundamental driver of human development and progress. The changes that education brings could also determine the future path of humanity, argues IIASA World Population Program Director Wolfgang Lutz in a new publication with the Pontifical Academy of Sciences.  More

03 June 2020
Making sense of climate scenarios: New toolkit available for decision makers

To make climate scenarios work for decision makers, an international team of researchers have developed a comprehensive interactive online platform.  More

27 May 2020
Building pathways to sustainability in a post-COVID world

IIASA and the International Science Council (ISC) have established a partnership combining the strengths and expertise of the two organizations to define and design sustainability pathways, through a multi-stakeholder dialogue, that will enable a more equitable post-COVID world.  More

27 May 2020
Research leadership appointments

In light of the new strategic plan that will become operational in 2021, IIASA has appointed four program directors to lead new research programs. Raya Muttarak, Keywan Riahi, Elena Rovenskaya, and Yoshihide Wada will form part of the scientific leadership that will address the institute’s research priorities to ensure that program objectives are aligned with the new IIASA strategy and institute values.  More

25 May 2020
Why are we still failing to stop deforestation?

While national and international efforts to reverse the trend of deforestation have multiplied in recent years, there is still no clear evidence to suggest that these initiatives are actually working. A new paper published in One Earth, calls for a radically different approach that focuses on our understanding of how individuals make their choices about forests and livelihoods.  More

19 May 2020
Game-changing technologies to transform food systems

According to new research, a pipeline of disruptive technologies could transform our food systems, ecosystems, and human health, but attention to the enabling environment is needed to realize their potential.  More

11 May 2020
Exploring the impacts of climate change on hydropower production

A new study by researchers from IIASA and China investigated the impacts of different levels of global warming on hydropower potential and found that this type of electricity generation benefits more from a 1.5°C than a 2°C climate scenario.  More

11 May 2020
Towards a new generation of vegetation models

Plants and vegetation play a critical role in supporting life on Earth, but there is still a lot of uncertainty in our understanding of how exactly they affect the global carbon cycle and ecosystem services. A new IIASA-led study explored the most important organizing principles that control vegetation behavior and how they can be used to improve vegetation models.  More

08 May 2020
Defining a safe and just space for people and planet

A new working group of the Earth Commission, comprising renowned scientists from institutions around the world including IIASA, will investigate future pathways of how humanity might develop sustainably to ensure a safe and just world for all.  More

07 May 2020
Can we estimate the time until the next recession?

As the world economy is falling into one of the biggest contractions of the last decades, a new study of economic recession patterns finds that the likelihood of a downturn was high even before the onset of the Coronavirus crisis.  More

30 April 2020
Five years after the Paris Agreement: The gap between promises and implementation

The results of a new study show that achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement will require a deep reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions, ideally by around 40% to 50% by 2030.  More

30 April 2020
A new approach to measuring inequalities in development

A new study by researchers from IIASA and Hong Kong University of Science and Technology for the first time systematically explored and compared the use of the Human Life Indicator as a viable alternative to the conventional Human Development Index as a means of measuring progress in development.  More

28 April 2020
New ERC grant to explore making pension policies more fair

The IIASA World Population Program has received a new grant from the European Research Council to explore how to make pension policies more equitable by identifying fair normal pension ages and ensuring new measures of population ageing are up-to-date.  More

21 April 2020
Economic recovery after shutdown could take up to three years

The coronavirus pandemic poses an enormous challenge for the domestic and global economy. Despite the measures taken by the Austrian government, the consequences of the lockdown and partial suspension of global trade flows will be felt for a long time.  More

21 April 2020
SAS and IIASA call for crowd-driven artificial intelligence to help track deforestation

On the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, SAS and IIASA join forces to transform crowdsourced knowledge into actionable intelligence to help protect the planet.  More

17 April 2020
Can sub-Saharan Africa achieve sustainable access to energy for all by 2030?

In 2019, the global population without access to electricity dipped below 1 billion for the first time. This progress has however been uneven, both across and within different regions. A new IIASA study shows that to ensure universal access to affordable, reliable, and modern electricity services by 2030 in sub-Saharan Africa, the pace of electrification must more than triple.  More

16 April 2020
Returning land to nature with high-yield farming

The expansion of farmlands to meet the growing food demand of the world’s ever expanding population places a heavy burden on natural ecosystems. A new IIASA study however shows that about half the land currently needed to grow food crops could be spared if attainable crop yields were achieved globally and crops were grown where they are most productive.  More

15 April 2020
IIASA-NERC collaborative research fellowships awarded

IIASA and the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) have awarded three fellowships to support talented early career researchers in delivering challenging research and supporting collaboration between the two organizations.  More

14 April 2020
Reducing the risk to children’s health in flood-prone areas of India

Monsoon rainfall has become more unpredictable in India. Floods and droughts have become more common and pose multiple risks to human health and wellbeing, with children under five being particularly vulnerable. New research finds that more assistance needs to be provided to communities in flood-prone areas to protect children under five from undernutrition.  More

13 April 2020
Exploring the link between education and climate change

What are the most effective ways to achieve desired sustainable development outcomes across all aspects of wellbeing, and how might the pursuit of some of these goals affect progress toward others? A new study by an international team of researchers aims to address these questions to help understand possible synergies and tradeoffs among these goals.  More

03 April 2020
Smaller scale solutions needed for rapid progress towards emissions targets

Low-carbon technologies that are smaller scale, more affordable, and can be mass deployed are more likely to enable a faster transition to net-zero emissions, according to a new study by an international team of researchers.  More

01 April 2020
Slovak Republic re-establishes ties with IIASA

The Slovak Republic has rejoined IIASA as a national member with its membership supported through the Ministry of Education, Science, Research, and Sport, and the Slovak Committee for Cooperation with IIASA.  More

31 March 2020
COVID-19: Visualizing regional indicators for better decision making

As the COVID-19 pandemic sweeps across the globe, it is fast becoming clear that no one is exempt from its disruptive effects. IIASA researchers are working to visualize key demographic and socioeconomic information to help inform decisions by health professionals, governments, and policymakers to address the crisis.  More

24 March 2020
Planning for future water security in China

China’s fast economic growth and accompanying rise in food demand is driving an increase in water use for agriculture and industry, thus threatening the country’s water security. The findings of a new study underscore the value and potential of technological adoptions to help design targets and incentives for water scarcity mitigation measures.  More

23 March 2020
How can migration, workforce participation, and education balance the cost of aging in Europe?

New IIASA research shows that higher levels of education and increasing workforce participation in both migrant and local populations are needed to compensate for the negative economic impacts of aging populations in EU countries.  More

19 March 2020
India rejoins IIASA

Recognizing the mutual benefits of scientific collaboration in a broad field of activities of global concern and interest, India has rejoined IIASA as a full member through the Technology Information, Forecasting, and Assessment Council (TIFAC).  More

19 March 2020
Shedding light on how much carbon tropical forests can absorb

Tropical forest ecosystems are an important part of the global carbon cycle as they take up and store large amounts of CO2. It is however uncertain how much these forests’ ability to take up and store carbon differ between forests with high versus low species richness. New IIASA research sheds light on this question aiming to enhance our ability to predict tropical ecosystems’ strength as global carbon sinks.  More

17 March 2020
Rethinking mortality and how we plan for old age

Many people dream of comfortably living out their golden years. A new IIASA study however shows that older Europeans, and especially women, frequently underestimate how many years they have left, which could lead to costly decisions related to planning for their remaining life course.  More

16 March 2020
IIASA operational while taking coronavirus protective measures

In accordance with the Austrian government’s measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, COVID-19, IIASA premises in Laxenburg are closed. However, the institute remains operational via remote working.  More

09 March 2020
From climate change awareness to action

Awareness of climate change and its impacts is not enough to move people to action. New research on how people’s worldviews affect their perceptions and actions could help policymakers and activists reframe the discussion around climate change mitigation.  More

03 March 2020
Study identifies regional malnutrition clusters across India

Childhood malnutrition in India remains a major problem. A new study shows that the problem is concentrated in specific geographic areas, which could help policymakers working to address the issue.  More

28 February 2020
Containing methane and its contribution to global warming

Methane is a gas that deserves more attention in the climate debate as it contributes to almost half of human-made global warming in the short-term. A new IIASA study shows that it is possible to significantly contribute to reduced global warming through the implementation of available technology that limits methane release to the atmosphere.  More

27 February 2020
New systemic approach needed to tackle global challenges

Putting systemic thinking at the centre of policymaking will be essential to address global issues in an era of rapid and disruptive change, according to a new joint report by IIASA and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).  More

19 February 2020
Could water solve the renewable energy storage challenge?

Seasonally pumped hydropower storage could provide an affordable way to store renewable energy over the long-term, filling a much needed gap to support the transition to renewable energy, according to a new study from IIASA scientists.  More

17 February 2020
Systems analysis for a new Arctic

A major new IIASA report highlights new and emerging policy trends in the Arctic, a region on the front lines of climate change, geopolitics, and global governance.  More

27 January 2020
Sea level rise to cause major economic impact in the absence of further climate action

Rising sea levels, a direct impact of the Earth’s warming climate, is intensifying coastal flooding. The findings of a new study show that the projected negative economy-wide effects of coastal flooding are already significant until 2050, but are then predicted to increase substantially towards the end of the century if no further climate action on mitigation and adaptation is taken.  More

27 January 2020
Fabian Wagner to lead capacity development activities at IIASA

Fabian Wagner has been appointed as the new Capacity Development and Academic Training (CDAT) Dean from 1 February 2020.  More

24 January 2020
Increasing opportunities for sustainable behavior

To mitigate climate change and safeguard ecosystems, we need to make drastic changes in our consumption and transport behaviors. A new IIASA study shows how even minor changes to available infrastructure can trigger tipping points in the collective adoption of sustainable behaviors.  More

14 January 2020
Christiane Pohn-Hufnagl appointed IIASA Chief Operations Officer

Christiane Pohn-Hufnagl will join the executive team of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) as Chief Operations Officer (COO) on 1 July 2020.  More

13 January 2020
Exceptional young scientists awarded

IIASA has recognized four outstanding young scientists from the 2019 Young Scientists Summer Program (YSSP) as YSSP awardees. Two candidates will receive funding to continue their research projects at IIASA and two have been given an Honorable Mention for exceptional effort.  More

10 January 2020
Effective institutions to support sustainable development

IIASA provided scientific input to the World Public Sector Report 2019, prepared by the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations (UNDESA). The report focuses on the Sustainable Development Goal 16 on public institutions.  More



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Last edited: 05 January 2021

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