Towards resilient low-carbon economies

Climate risks and policies

22 - 23 Mar 2021

Follow the conference on Twitter: #PEGNet2021@PEGNetKiel

Like the Covid-19 pandemic, climate change is a risk multiplier - it increases fragility, inequalities and the vulnerability of economies, in particular in developing countries. Responding to the challenges of climate change requires thus a comprehensive approach to transition towards resilient low-carbon economies. Achieving this transition requires an understanding how climate change will impact economies in low-income countries. The conference will consist of several sessions on carbon pricing, the possibilities of a just transition and the impacts of climate change on pro-poor growth, health and migration in low-income countries.
We are looking forward to the presentations of our three excellent keynote speakers:

  • Vikram Widge (Climate Policy Initiative)
  • Ottmar Edenhofer (PIK, MCC)
  • Meera Mahadevan (University of California)

The online event was jointly organised by the German Institute for Global and Area Studies (GIGA), the Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC), the Deutsche Gesellschaft für International Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, and the Poverty Reduction, Equity and Growth Network (PEGNet).

Please find the detailed programme below.

2.45-3.00 pm | Opening

  • Rainer Thiele (PEGNet)

  • Lucia De Carlo (Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development - BMZ) 

3.00-4.00 pm | Keynotes

  • Vikram Widge(Climate Policy Initiative) - An inclusive sustainable recovery as a model for financing the transition to a low-carbon world

  • Ottmar Edenhofer (PIK) - Mitigation & carbon pricing in developing countries (working title)

Moderator: Jann Lay (GIGA)

The keynotes was followed by a Q&A.

4.00-4.15 pm - Break

4.15-5.15 pm | Session 1: Mitigation policies in developing countries – Recent evidence and policy implications


  • Mitigation efforts and development: Effectiveness, trade-offs, and distributional impacts.
  • Regional and country specificities, for example scope for redistribution, use of biomass, heterogeneity of energy systems.
  • Governance and political economy of mitigation policies.


5.15-5.30 pm | Break

5.30-6.30 pm | Session 2: Putting just transition towards low-carbon development into practice

  • Luis Calderón (CEOSolarvatio, Mexico)
  • Tasneem Essop (Founding Director of the Energy Democracy Initiative, RSA)
  • Phillip Gass (International Institute for Sustainable Development, IISD, Switzerland)
  • Moustapha Kamal Gueye (ILO)

Moderator: Götz von Stumpfeldt (GIZ)


  • The role of innovation and technology competitiveness of renewables, green jobs
  • Structural change, industrialization and green economy, employment and labour market, phasing out of coal, oil and gas.
  • Policies for a just and inclusive transition, decent work, poverty reduction and the role of the private sector.

2.45-3.00 pm | Opening Day 2

  • Rainer Thiele (PEGNet)

  • Jürgen Keinhorst (Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU))

3.00-3.45 pm | Junior Keynote

Meera Mahadevan (University of California) - Political Incentives in Environmental and Energy Access

Moderator: Christine Merk (IfW Kiel)


3.45-4.00 pm | Break

4.00-5.00 pm | Evidence on climate change impacts – Parallel sessions

Session 3a: Migration, Climate & Conflict

Moderator: Claas Schneiderheinze (IfW Kiel)


  • Climate and environmental changes have both a direct impact on migration decisions and an indirect impact through their influence on conflicts.
  • Especially in less developed regions, they can cause and exacerbate conflicts and thus lead to hunger, terror and flight and potentially destabilize entire regions.
  • Negative consequences then also affect countries away from climate change hotspots (e.g. in Africa). There are very different estimates of the actual extent of these effects. The session is intended to provide some clarity here.

Session 3b: Climate Change and Health

Moderator:Milena Baumert (PEGNet)


  • The WHO estimates at least 250.000 additional deaths/yr between 2030 and 2050 directly attributable to altered health conditions due to climate change.
  • The change of global weather and in particular extreme weather events affect human health directly (e.g. clean air, safe drinking water, crop production and secure shelter).
  • Areas fragile to the effects of global weather conditions paired with weak health infrastructure and low economic power, mainly developing countries, will likely be the most effected and the least able to respond.

5.00-5.15 pm | Break

5.15-6.15 pm | Session 4: Policies for strengthening resilience and managing risk

Moderator: Sebastian Homm (GIZ)


Climate change will severely affect the economies of developing countries and will constrain the achievements of the Sustainable Development Goals that have been made so far. There is hence a growing need for economic analyses and policy instruments to respond appropriately to the impacts of climate change on sustainable development objectives. Extensive research programmes already exist on this topic, but in developing countries there are particular challenges. The session aims to present current methods and approaches to understand the risks climate change poses for economies in developing countries and how development planning can integrate these results. Contributions to the session should provide new insights on how to strengthen resilience and risk management of developing countries in the context of climate change.


6.15-6.30 pm | Close of conference


The conference is co-organised by the German Institute for Global and Area Studies (GIGA), the Deutsche Gesellschaft für International Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, the Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC), and the Poverty Reduction, Equity and Growth Network (PEGNet) on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and supported by the KfW Development Bank.