Futures Initiatives

Established in 2014, the IIASA futures initiatives are cross-sectoral projects designed to explore plausible futures for a number of the world’s rapidly transitioning regions or resources. Current futures initiatives cover a spectrum of issues encompassing the Arctic, tropical regions, economic integration in Eurasia, and water management around the world.

© Rfischia | Dreamstime

© Rfischia | Dreamstime

The Arctic Futures Initiative works collaboratively to bring together affiliated stakeholders to support an integrated, “end to end” science to decision-making framework. This will provide an integrative assessment of plausible futures for the Arctic.

The Challenges and Opportunities of Economic Integration within a Wider European and Eurasian Space Futures initiative deals with the complex issues of economic cooperation on the Eurasian continent. Increasing integration creates opportunities for better economic development in the countries involved, but it also poses many challenges for sharing the associated costs and benefits.

The Tropical Futures Initiative aims to provide scientific analysis to policymakers in the tropical region to understand the dynamics of transitions and their main driving forces, enabling factors, barriers, as well as their consequences for human wellbeing and sustainability. The initiative will also create a bridge between science and policy through capacity-building activities.

Water Futures and Solutions is a collaborative initiative which helps to identify water-related policies that are consistent across scales and sectors. A stakeholder informed, scenario-based assessment of water resources and demand will test the feasibility and sustainability of policy options.

Finally, the Global Energy Assessment—involving specialists from a range of disciplines, industry groups, and policy areas— defined a new global energy policy agenda aimed at facilitating equitable and sustainable energy services for all.

Challenges and Opportunities of Economic Integration within a Wider European and Eurasian Space

The international research project “Challenges and Opportunities of Economic Integration within a Wider European and Eurasian Space” focuses on plausible futures of economic cooperation in the Greater Eurasian space and interplay between different integration processes in the region. A particular specific aim of the project is to discuss, analyze, and critically evaluate diverse issues related to economic cooperation between countries and blocks within the Eurasian continent covering the European Union, the Eurasian Economic Union, Eastern Partnership, Central Asia, and their neighbors. More

Tropical Futures Initiative

IIASA’s Tropical Futures Initiative represents a novel approach to tackling tropical deforestation through policy assessment and capacity building. More

Global Energy Assessment

The Global Energy Assessment (GEA), launched in 2012, defines a new global energy policy agenda –  one that transforms the way society thinks about, uses, and delivers energy.  Involving specialists from a range of disciplines, industry groups, and policy areas, GEA research aims to facilitate equitable and sustainable energy services for all, in particular the two billion people who currently lack access to clean, modern energy. More

Print this page

Last edited: 20 February 2017


Nebojsa Nakicenovic

Emeritus Research Scholar

Integrated Assessment and Climate Change Research Group

Energy, Climate, and Environment Program

Emeritus Research Scholar

Transformative Institutional and Social Solutions Research Group

T +43(0) 2236 807 411


Chen, S., Fang, K., Dhakal, S., Kharrazi, A. , Tong, K., & Ramaswami, A. (2021). Reshaping urban infrastructure for a carbon-neutral and sustainable future. Resources, Conservation and Recycling 174, e105765. 10.1016/j.resconrec.2021.105765.

Iakubovskii, D., Krupenev, D., Komendantova, N. , & Boyarkin, D. (2021). A model for power shortage minimization in electric power systems given constraints on controlled sections. Energy Reports 7, 4577-4586. 10.1016/j.egyr.2021.07.022.

Chen, S., Prettner, K., Kuhn, M., & Bloom, D.E. (2021). The economic burden of COVID-19 in the United States: Estimates and projections under an infection-based herd immunity approach. The Journal of the Economics of Ageing 20, e100328. 10.1016/j.jeoa.2021.100328.

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