Preparing for the Next, Very Long Crisis: Towards a ‘Cool’ Science and Technology Policy Agenda For a Globally Warming Economy

Paul A. David


This short paper on a very big subject deals with a worry - a worry that the present economic crisis is likely to contribute to the already-existing temptations of governmental and private actors alike to behave in a time-inconsistent fashion when responding to the challenge of climate change. The specific concern here is that science and technology research commitments be launched soon enough on the scale that is likely to be needed, and that timely steps be taken toward the supportive adaptations in long-standing institutional and regulatory readjustments that can render those investments in knowledge more effective. Institutional changes, new incentive mechanisms and a rethinking of national policies with regard to exploitation of the international regime of intellectual property protections - are needed to successfully address the looming crisis of global climate change.

Keywords: GHG emissions, CO2 pricing, Strategic Energy Technologies, EU SET Plan, green technologies, R&D, IRP, global technology transfers.

JEL classification: O13, O31, O32, O33, Q54, Q55

UNU-MERIT Working Papers ISSN 1871-9872