Call for papers for a fully funded research workshop:

Climate governance innovation trends in the run-up to Paris 2015: analysing mitigation and adaptation policies

15 – 17 May 2017, International Academic Forum Heidelberg (IWH)

The 2009 Conference of the Parties (COP) in Copenhagen was widely seen as a failure. Six years later, the Paris COP led to a diplomatic success, even if, by itself, the outcome is not necessarily sufficient to ensure effective climate change mitigation and adaptation. Crucially, the Paris COP was more bottom-up in structure, with each state submitting a Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC). This transition – from a top-down governance model in 2009, to a more bottom-up approach in 2015 – and the new possibilities it opens up, represents a fascinating and underexplored topic of climate governance research.

In order to explore the topic in more detail, INOGOV will host a fully-funded international workshop for Early Career Scholars, supported by leading figures in the field, in Heidelberg, Germany, from 15th-17th May, 2017. An Early Career Scholar is any researcher who is within eight years of completing their Ph.D. (with very strong MA students and Ph.D. researchers especially welcome).

Topical themes:

i) How have key actors – and coalitions – influenced the transition, both as leaders and as laggards?

  1. The European Union as a climate leader, or falling star;
  2. States as facilitators of, and obstacles to, ambition;
  3. The tole of the local level and Non-State Actors.

ii) What empirical examples of new governance innovations can be identified, and how do these fit into broader trends?

  1. Climate Change Acts as burgeoning legislation;
  2. The dual challenges of mitigation and adaptation;
  3. The role of Nationally Determined Contributions.

iii) What theoretical tools can we use to explain these new trends in climate change mitigation and adaptation?

  1. Distinctions between leaders, pioneers, and laggards;
  2. The role of polycentricity, both normatively and analytically;
  3. Pathway models for individual action.

The following keynote speakers will give talks at the workshop and provide feedback:

Moreover, experts from the Heidelberg Centre for the Environment (HCE) and the Institute for Political Science at Heidelberg University will attend the workshop.


The workshop will be hosted in the beautiful medieval city of Heidelberg, which is home to Germany’s oldest university. All workshop participants will receive full funding (including travel, accommodation and subsistence) by INOGOV in line with the COST reimbursement rules. This workshop is open to any Early Career Researcher (from Masters Level up to eight years after the completion of a viva), particularly from INOGOV ‘inclusiveness’ countries. Please send a letter of motivation (maximum 400 words) and an abstract of a paper (maximum 300 words) to the workshop organiser Nicole Schmidt (, by Wednesday February 1st, 2017. Authors will be notified of acceptance/rejection by Friday February 24th, 2017. The letter of motivation should explain how attending the workshop could benefit the attendees’ own research and next career steps, and fit with INOGOV’s core aims and objectives. The abstract should describe the objective, background, theory and methods, expected insights, and fit with INOGOV. Please list the title, the name and e-mail address of the par­ticipant. Papers should be 4,000-6,000 words. Papers must be submitted to by Monday May 1st, 2017.

Participants are expected to give a 10 minute presentation of their paper using at most 3-4 PPT slides (or no sides), and they will then receive feedback from the other participants and senior scholars. Following the workshop, we aim to create at least one joint journal publication, a blog post for the INOGOV website, and an INOGOV Policy Brief.

Download full details of call for papers here


Photo credit:Flickr/Dominik Dome

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