Klimalog: Climate-resilient and nature-compatible sustainable development through socially just transformation (Klimalog III)

Climate change has become a comprehensive threat to sustainable development and the implementation of the 2030 Agenda in all world regions. The research project investigates and advises on how an acceleration of comprehensive and profound transformation processes to mitigate global warming (climate change mitigation) and to respond to the unavoidable consequences of climate change in development policy (climate change adaptation and loss and damage) can become possible and feasible - for a climate-resilient and nature-compatible sustainable development through socially just transformation.

Project Lead:
Mariya Aleksandrova

Project Team:
Aparajita Banerjee
Andrew Deneault
Nicholas Goedeking
Marcelo Inacio da Cunha
Malerba, Daniele
Jean Carlo Rodríguez de Francisco
Dennis Schüpf

Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development

Time frame:
2023 - 2025 / ongoing

Project description

The latest assessment reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) underline the urgency of drastically reducing global greenhouse gas emissions in order to keep 1.5°C paths possible. A reversal of emission trends in developing and emerging countries is crucial for this, as they are by now responsible for two-thirds of annual global emissions. This applies not least to the requirements for sustainable urban development in the dynamically urbanising developing regions of Africa and Asia.

Furthermore, the assessment reports emphasise the central importance of intact ecosystems, which, in addition to their indispensable potential for carbon storage, also make essential contributions to climate adaptation and disaster risk reduction. The protection or restoration of the ecosystems concerned, in turn, poses particular challenges for developing and emerging countries, especially in climate-vulnerable cities and coastal regions where a rapidly growing population, economic assets and central infrastructure are concentrated.

All this requires a high degree of external support, for normative (historical responsibility), political (international credibility) and empirical (practical feasibility) reasons. At the same time, geopolitics and multiple crises (wars, pandemics, etc.) hamper an international cooperation aligned with this, and take up substantial resources and capacities.

This gives rise to four premises of outstanding developmental significance, which are considered and addressed at IDOS from an overarching research perspective of global climate justice and the associated requirements for social just transformation processes ("Just Transition Framework"):

  1. Loss and Damage governance and finance: Climate-related loss and damage are already realities. They require viable development responses, even more so in a world that threatens to miss paths to stabilise global warming at 1.5°C.
    Research questions: How could existing multilevel finance and governance structures enable LDCs and SIDS to address L&D associated with slow onset climate impacts? What institutional changes and interlinkages are needed?
  2. Adaptation governance and finance: Climate change adaptation requires increased attention, capacities and resources. In the spirit of the Global Goal on Adaptation formulated in the Paris Agreement, the question of how the goal can be operationalised and how bilateral and multilateral development cooperation can support its partner countries in adapting to the consequences of climate change in an even more targeted manner is pressing.
    Research questions: To what extent, and under what conditions, do climate funds contribute to improved resilience (capacity to adapt and transform) and capacity to manage residual climate risks in LDCs and SIDS? Under what conditions do existing multilevel institutional arrangements enable and catalyse effective and just local adaptation in urban and coastal regions?
  3. Climate change mitigation following the Paris Agreement additionally requires the reversal of emission trends in developing and emerging countries, while energy demand, land use changes and urbanisation are growing simultaneously. This poses special challenges for development cooperation and for the demand for "just transitions".
    Research questions: How to make climate mitigation policies just, equitable and aligned with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development?  Under what conditions could just energy partnerships be effective and sustainable? What policies and instruments are needed? What is the role of state and non-state actors in facilitating just transitions such as national climate and sustainability institutions, cities, and the private sector?
  4. Environmental protection and ecosystems conservation are integral to enabling sustainable solutions both for the avoidance or storage of greenhouse gas emissions and for adaptation to the consequences of climate change, and thus fundamental to "just transitions".
    Research questions: What are the environmental justice implications of conservation (offsetting) and restoration Nature-based Solutions, with regard to distributional, procedural and recognition-based concerns of marginal groups? How do power and politics shape the values, meanings, processes, objectives and science? What are the opportunities and challenges of applying a rights-based approach for conservation and restoration interventions?

The acceleration of comprehensive and profound transformation processes to mitigate global warming (climate change mitigation) and to respond to the unavoidable consequences of climate change in development policy (climate change adaptation) as well as related residual risks are fundamental prerequisites for sustainable development, the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the safeguarding of development successes already achieved.

Strong institutions at all governance levels, corresponding cooperation processes that involve different groups of actors, and the protection, sustainable use and restoration of natural resources and ecosystems are just as indispensable for this as a forward-looking policy that recognises overarching geopolitical framework conditions and systemic interrelationships, reflects them appropriately in its strategies for action and thus remains capable of responding.

Cross-cutting research questions:  What are the entry points for strengthening EU’s international cooperation in the policy areas of just energy transitions and L&D associated with adverse slow-onset climate impacts? What is the role of social protection in just transitions towards mitigation and resilience?


Health Economics, Development and Climate Change

Innovative Climate Finance

Promoting Climate Action around the World

Climate finance to leverage social protection for climate action

Designing the new UN climate finance goal

Urban Communities in the Face of the Climate Crisis

2023 UN Climate Change Conference: How far has the world come to curb the climate crisis?

Building Science and Societies for Sustainability Transformations

Linking Loss and Damage to Conflict Affected and Fragile Settings

The evolution of connections between Paris Agreement and the 2030 Agenda in the NDCs

Africa’s Right to Development in a Climate-Constrained World

Funding “Loss and Damage”


The European Green Deal and the war in Ukraine

Global Climate Governance in the Face of Obstruction


COP26 Online-Pressebriefing

Working together to achieve the Paris climate goals and sustainable development

Race to Zero

Social Protection in a Changing Climate

It’s the End of the COP as We Know It!

The Conservation Revolution

EU-Konjunkturprogramm, Covid-19, Nachhaltige Entwicklung und Klimawandel


Nature-based solutions and Global Climate Action

The EU’s external cooperation post-2020

Breaking new ground

Climate Engineering: Buying time to contain global warming?

„Vor den Gipfeln“ Journalismus, nachhaltige Entwicklung und Klimawandel

Bonn Climate Change Conference 2019

Approaches to Mobilize Finance for Addressing Climate Induced Loss and Damage

Telling the wood from the trees

Taking Global Climate Action beyond 2020 - Accelerating the Sustainable Future We Want

Global Climate Action: Bridging Theory and Practice

Fit for purpose?

Klimalog @COP24

Development and Climate Days 2018

Climate Change and the Cost of Capital in Climate Vulnerable Developing Countries

Prospects of success for the „Katowice Rulebook“ and the COP24

Latin American Non-State Actors

Scaling up green bonds to finance climate change mitigation and the green transformation

Klimalog Booth

Boosting non-Party climate action through Talanoa

Global ambition, local action: climate resilience for all


Interconnections Zone During Cop23

Climate Action and Human Wellbeing at a Crossroads


Project Coordination

Alexander Knabe


Theme Website Klimalog: www.klimalog.info