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News - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Jennifer Spence Named Senior Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School’s Arctic Initiative

| July 01, 2022

Jennifer Spence, Executive Secretary of the Arctic Council's Sustainable Development Working Group, will join Harvard Kennedy School's Arctic Initiative as a resident Senior Fellow this coming academic year. Spence will substantially enhance the Initiative's capacity to address the future of Arctic governance—an increasingly critical issue in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Flags of the Arctic states at the 11th Ministerial Meeting of the Arctic Council in Rovaniemi, Finland

Mandel Ngan/Pool via AP

Analysis & Opinions - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

The Arctic Won’t Wait: Novel Structures for Advancing Arctic Goals During Geopolitical Crisis

| June 28, 2022

Russia's invasion of Ukraine has slammed the brakes on the collaborative operations of the Arctic Council. An interim Indigenous Arctic Council could ensure that critical research keeps pace with the rapid rate of climate change in the region, among other benefits, argues Joel Clement.

Solar field and biogas plant next to highway in Germany

AP Photo/Michael Sohn, file

Journal Article - Research Policy

Beyond Innovation and Deployment: Modeling the Impact of Technology-Push and Demand-Pull Policies in Germany's Solar Policy Mix

| June 16, 2022

A narrow focus on technology innovation and deployment outcomes by academic researchers can lead to recommendations for the design of policy mixes that compromise key dimensions of sociotechnical change, such as job creation, find Alejandro Nuñez-Jimenez, Christof Knoeri, Joern Hoppmann, and Volker Hoffmann.

Methane bubbles frozen in lake surface

Miriam Jones/United States Geological Survey

Analysis & Opinions - Physics Today

Permafrost Is an Undefined Variable in the Climate Equation

  • David Kramer
| June 14, 2022

Permafrost Pathways, a newly announced research project led by Woodwell Climate Research Center, Harvard Kennedy School's Arctic Initiative, and the Alaska Institute for Justice, aims to pin down estimates of permafrost thaw and its impact on the affected populations. But the war in Ukraine threatens monitoring and data collection in Russia, which is home to most of the world’s permafrost.

Mexico City Metrobus on the street

Mariana Gil/EMBARQ Brasil

Book Chapter - Routledge

Partnerships Under Pressure: Lessons on Adaptation and Overcoming Challenges

| May 31, 2022

This chapter investigates the durability of partnership arrangements and their adaptability as a key condition for partnership effectiveness and long-term sustainability. Using a 16-year database consisting of partnership initiatives selected as finalists for the Roy Family Award for Environmental Partnership, as well as case studies of the Noel Kempff Climate Action Project, Mexico City Metrobús, and Alianza Shire, Amanda Sardonis and Henry Lee show that partnership adaptability is a determinant of partnership effectiveness and is intrinsically linked to partnership structuring.

Solar panels on the rooftops of German houses

AP Photo/Martin Meissner

Book Chapter - Palgrave Macmillan

Solar Energy Communities in the Urban Environment

| May 28, 2022

This chapter in The Palgrave Encyclopedia of Urban and Regional Futures presents a taxonomy of photovoltaic installations based on who owns them and uses their electricity, making it easier to identify solar energy communities in urban environments and map their economic, environmental and social benefits. 

Students pose for a group photo at Woodwell Climate Research Center

Brittany Janis

- Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Students Build StoryMaps, Camaraderie at 2022 Arctic Data Stories Workshop

In late March, 19 students from Harvard and the greater Boston area boarded a bus to Woodwell Climate Research Center in Falmouth, Massachusetts, for the final session of the second annual Arctic Data Stories Workshop. 

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- Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Testimony on China’s Cyber, Energy Plans

| Spring 2022

In February and March, Belfer Center Student Fellow Winnona DeSombre and Environment and Natural Resources Program Director Henry Lee testified before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission in Washington, D.C. During separate hearings on China’s capabilities and plans related to cyber and to energy, DeSombre and Lee recommended actions Congress should take for the U.S. to remain competitive with China.

An aerial view of the village of Kivalina, Alaska


Journal Article - The Yearbook of Polar Law

The Role of Governance in Promoting the Resilience of Arctic Communities

| Apr. 19, 2022

The article examines the concept of resilience and the role which governance can play in promoting the resilience of Arctic communities, and therefore their ability not only to survive but also to thrive. The article develops a theory of resilience, dividing types of resilience into in-situ and ex-situ resilience to allow the comparison of seemingly disparate examples. Through the use of a systematic comparative case analysis technique, the article explores the lessons which can be learned about the role of good governance in ensuring the promotion of resilience in Arctic communities in the future.

Thick layer of permafrost exposed by coastal erosion

US Geological Survey/Brandt Meixell

Newspaper Article - ArcticToday

A New Program Aims to Monitor, Mitigate and Adapt to Arctic-Wide Thaw

  • Yereth Rosen
| Apr. 18, 2022

The Woodwell Climate Research Center and the Harvard Kennedy School’s Arctic Initiative this week unveiled their multi-year Permafrost Pathways program. The $41 million program, with funding from the collaborative Audacious Project, will combine global permafrost-thaw monitoring with regional and local initiatives to adapt to the onset of usteq and related challenges.