Research Activities

The goal of the Energy Program is to provide scientific and strategic analysis to better understand the dynamics of future energy transitions, their main driving forces, enabling factors, barriers, as well as their consequences for the social, economic and environmental dimensions of human well being.

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The Program aims to support policy making by studying mechanisms and levers that would permit the transformation of the present energy system to a cleaner and more sustainable one. The research strategy combines basic and applied research with a focus on integrated assessment, energy policy modeling, and the development of decision-analytical frameworks for policy integration. Science-based policy advice is achieved through an integrated assessment and modeling of how to simultaneously address the major energy policy challenges in the areas of environment (climate change and air pollution), energy poverty (or access to affordable and clean energy for the poor), energy security and reliability. The Program’s niche builds upon the systematic and holistic analysis of energy policy objectives and their interactions in order to identify possible synergies and trade-offs. This includes the identification of salient co-benefits from meeting a range of energy-development objectives that at the same time are robust against the multiple uncertainties that the future entails.

The Energy Programs main areas of research comprise:

Integrated Assessment

The Energy Program develops tools to address complex interrelated sustainability issues that involve energy systems and their interactions with other major economic sectors, including land, forest, and agriculture. More

Energy System Transformations

Providing universal energy access, improving energy security, reducing of health impacts of energy systems as well as limiting the magnitude of climate change to below 2°C are all vital objectives in today’s world. More

Energy and Environment

The Energy Program plays a major role in contributing to research on a global scale focused on better understanding the link between global energy systems and the environment. More

Analyzing the Energy Dimensions of Poverty

The ENE Program is analyzing how improving access to modern energy carriers and technologies in developing countries can potentially improve human health and well-being. More

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Last edited: 20 August 2020


Keywan Riahi

Program Director


T +43(0) 2236 807 491

Volker Krey

Deputy Program Director


T +43(0) 2236 807 415

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Gibson M, Rao N , Slade RB, Pereira JP, & Rogelj J (2020). The role of energy in mitigating grain storage losses in India and the impact for nutrition. Resources, Conservation and Recycling 163: e105100. DOI:10.1016/j.resconrec.2020.105100.

Ghadaksaz H & Saboohi Y (2020). Energy supply transformation pathways in Iran to reduce GHG emissions in line with the Paris Agreement. Energy Strategy Reviews 32: e100541. DOI:10.1016/j.esr.2020.100541.

Andrade Furtado GCd, Amarante Mesquita AL, Morabito A, Hendrick P, & Hunt J (2020). Using hydropower waterway locks for energy storage and renewable energies integration. Applied Energy 275: e115361. DOI:10.1016/j.apenergy.2020.115361.

Jiang X, Wang T, Jiang M, Xu M, Yu Y, Guo B, Chen D, Hu S, et al. (2020). Assessment of Plastic Stocks and Flows in China: 1978-2017. Resources, Conservation and Recycling 161: e104969. DOI:10.1016/j.resconrec.2020.104969.

Kuzemko C, Bradshaw M, Bridge G, Goldthau A, Jewell J , Overland I, Scholten D, Van de Graaf T, et al. (2020). Covid-19 and the politics of sustainable energy transitions. Energy Research & Social Science 68: e101685. DOI:10.1016/j.erss.2020.101685.

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