Climate policies and climate governance both at a national and international level have been formalized thanks partly due to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and due to peer pressure posed by the countries keen to implement climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies. Indeed, climate policies are seen as the basic elements of any action on climate change at the national level, since they are the tools via which global conventions and agreements -such as the Paris Agreement- may be implemented. Governance systems are, in turn needed, since they translate shared concerns about the global environment at the national level, and offer a sound basis upon which collaborative efforts to respond to the emerging challenges of global environmental change and can be implemented. Indeed, governance systems great facilitate the measurement, reporting and verification procedures, which have been central to much of the debates at the COPs.
Bearing in mind that there is a significant gap between the emissions reduction pledges made at the 2015 Paris Summit, and what is required to ensure that global warming does not exceed the global 2 degrees centigrade target, sound climate policies and solid climate governance are essential in order to overcome the difficulties of implementing the current binding agreements.
Operationally, climate change policy as a whole and climate governance in particular, act as enablers to the actual implementation of climate change mitigation and adaptation measures, a process which entails a wide range of issues such legal frameworks, financing, monitoring and technology transfer. Combined, they help to facilitate the implementation of an international climate regime. Together, they prevent a more fragmented approach to global climate action, integrate the works of the various institutions concerned with various aspects of climate policy, and help to develop the institutional means via which the spirit and principles of climate negotiations may be put into practice.
The key importance of climate policy and climate governance illustrates the need for a better understanding of how both may be duly implemented, and for the identification of processes, methods and tools which may help the countries and regions to take fully advantage of the many opportunities climate change policies and governance offer to them.
There is also a perceived need to showcase successful examples of how climate policy and climate governance has assisted countries to handle the social, economic and political challenges posed by climate change.
It is against this background that the “World Symposium on Climate Change Policies and Governance” is being organized by Manchester Metropolitan University, the Research and Transfer Centre “Applications of Life Sciences” of the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences (Germany), and the International Climate Change Information Programme (ICCIP). The Symposium will be a truly interdisciplinary event, mobilizing scholars, social movements and members of governmental agencies, involved in the preparation and/or implementation of climate change policies, undertaking research and/or executing projects on climate change policy and governance, round the world.
The “World Symposium on Climate Change Policies and Governance” will focus on “ensuring progress in mitigation and adaptation performance”, meaning that it will serve the purpose of showcasing experiences from policy-making, research, field projects and best practice to foster climate change adaptation policy and governance, which may be useful or implemented elsewhere.