The linkages between climate change, human responses, and sustainable governance represent a core research area at the Department of Economic History and International Relations. We believe that questions about the relationships between climate change, human responses, and sustainable development can be best answered by focusing on long-term change and by combining theory across the social sciences as well as the social and natural sciences. 

We understand global sustainability as ecological, social, and economic developments safeguarding human needs on a transplanetary scale. Thus, a central research interest in our group is climate change - one of the most fundamental challenges for contemporary society and the international community. Given the complex and trans-boundary character of climate effects on people and society, global governance institutions such as the African Union, European Union, Marine Stewardship Council, and United Nations (UN), are increasingly dealing with climate change. It is thus important to understand how climate change develops in the long run, how its impact affects humans, society, and governance responses across local, regional and global levels of governance and across policy sectors. We focus on social, political, and ecological change over time and the linkages between these trends in areas such as agriculture, climate security, disaster risks, food governance, human security, and social change. Our work is relevant to the agenda for the UN sustainable development goals that integrate diverse issues such as addressing hunger, gender equality and clean water intended to guide policies in all UN member states until 2030.


Ongoing Research Projects