Modelling has developed as a research dimension on its own to investigate questions where experiments are impossible. We model optimal design of complex chemical and energy systems, and explore feedbacks and interactions between abiotic and biotic processes.
We also use and develop integrated assessment models where human society is modelled alongside the physics of the earth system, and use modeling to identify optimal innovation and governance policies for transition. Accordingly, modelling allows us to look into the co-development of human and natural systems and to connect the challenges related to energy, water, food, biodiversity and climate change.
The research programme PROBLEMSHIFTING investigates the causes and effects of problem-shifting between international environmental treaty regimes, with a view to improving their overall effectiveness.
The transformation towards a less carbon-intensive society relies not only scientific facts and technological potential, but also on alternative ways to exist in the world and structure our societies. An important part of this reimagination of our lives is finding effective alternatives for imagining, envisioning and narrating post-fossil worlds.
How to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C
Climate researchers from Utrecht University and PBL show that that there are ways to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C instead of 2.0˚C by 2100.
Impact of climate change: DIRT-X, MECCA and SHAPE
Transdisciplinary projects will contribute to a better estimation of the impact and risks of climate change.
Ecosystem resilience to drought and flooding
How depends the robustness of plant ecosystems to drought and flooding on the plasticity of individual plants and heterogeneity of the plant population.
The Green Model
Detlef van Vuuren behind-the-scenes on global climate scenarios. How is scientific research contributing to complex climate policy?
Frank Biermann in Dutch newspaper: “Investigate ‘cooling down’ the Earth”
The Netherlands have to take a stance in the debate on deliberately cooling down the Earth, argues Frank Biermann in 'De Volkskrant'.