AICC Initiative


General scope of AICC

The AICC (Action, Inaction facing Climate Change) initiative was established in September 2022. This think tank aims to take a critical look at the knowledge about climate change, and to elaborate solutions for moving from inaction to action. These solutions are intended to be discussed with policy makers, firms, citizens and other stakeholders.

The interdisciplinary consortium gathers 25 founding partners, mainly researchers, working in 15 universities and research centres in France, Belgium, Switzerland, Canada, and the United States.

The official kick-off is planned September 29, 2023. The website http://aicc.science will be publicly available by June 2023. It will contain all the contributions prepared by AICC, as described below.

Issues related to technology, user demand (consumption, mobility, energy, heating/air conditioning), price, regulation, and legislation are at the heart of our initiative.

Our consortium takes an interdisciplinary approach by bringing together specialists in economics, finance, social choice, engineering, political economy, physics, and environmental science. We believe that approaches from different disciplines are needed to address the current situation, which could too often be described as inaction.

Topics

Different topics related to Climate Change have been identified and grouped into five areas, as follows:

  1. Energy: fossil versus sustainable energy, nuclear energy, energy transition, digital footprint, electric vehicles, climate engineering,
  2. Focus on firms/markets: Industrial energy issues, planned obsolescence, waste,
  3. Spatial dimension: urban mobility, sustainable forms of urbanization, global and local pollution, role of forests, international trade,
  4. Financial dimension: green finance, green washing, natural disaster insurance, financial compensations,
  5. Transversal topics: measure of well-being, standard of living and ecological transition, individual demand, adaptive behaviour, change of lifestyle, behavioural economics, price, regulation and incentives, attitude towards risk and uncertainty.

Each topic is addressed by one or more partners with relevant expertise.

Each topic will be treated in lecture(s) or in session(s), or both.

Communication strategy proposed by AICC

The strategy of communications will rely on various types of contributions, structured along a common format, as detailed below. Most of the contributions will be posted online. Each AICC partner will be responsible for dissemination of his/her topic. S/he will use either video lectures or recorded sessions (with panel of experts), as detailed below. Each topic will proceed at its own pace. However, a sufficient number of contributions should be available before the kick-off.

Format

Each contribution will be structured along the following 4-step format:

  1. State of the art: What do we know about the topic: basic statistics, technology, market and government role, environmental impact, climate responsibility?
  2. Solutions envisaged: Which solutions are being considered currently, technological, legal, policy-oriented, either already implemented or under consideration?
  3. Barriers / constraints: What are currently the technological, individual, political and commercial barriers to implement the solutions envisaged? Uncertainties and lack of trust should also be identified.
  4. Recommendations: What does AICC recommend as far as behavioural changes to be encouraged, and policies to be adopted? Specific recommendations will be provided to different stakeholders: citizens, organizations, State, firms.

Recorded lectures

Two types of lectures are envisaged.

The first one is typically divided into 5-to-15 minutes independent videos. In this case, several videos will be offered on the same topic, and organized as chapters of a lecture.

The second one is a standard lecture covering one topic in a single video, typically 30 to 45 minutes. This second type of lectures is suited for contributors experienced enough to attract the attention of the online audience for a long period.

Lectures will be posted on the dedicated AICC website area on FUN MOOC and later on, on other platforms.

Lectures are aimed at an audience of students and researchers, but also at citizens interested in Climate Change.

Sessions

For a session, an AICC partner will invite 2 to 4 external experts to debate on his/her topic. Questions will be asked by the session organizer or by a moderator (who may animate one or several sessions).

Sessions are typically less technical than lectures, and aimed at a wider audience. A session, which may be organized as a round table, will confront the views of several experts, typically from different disciplines, on the same topic.

A session may either be recorded independently, or be part of a conference or a workshop.

Conferences

AICC will organize conferences for an audience mixing academics, ministerial staff (e.g. environment, transportation, energy, finance, trade), consultants, and stakeholders. We will encourage media coverage of these events to reach a new and wider audience and, if possible, stakeholders.

Workshops

AICC members will gather in workshops lasting a few days to review a limited number of topics and produce white papers, mainly for dissemination to policymakers and stakeholders (in addition to dissemination to the academic world). A limited number of specialists may be invited depending on the topics. These workshops may provide an opportunity to enlarge the group of AICC members.

Lectures, sessions, and some elements of conferences and workshops will be publicly available on the website http://aicc.science.

Concluding comments

The AICC initiative relies on two pillars. The first pillar is information dissemination. A majority of stakeholders, out of ignorance, lack of interest, or fatalism, still feel that climate change is not their responsibility. However, basic knowledge is essential, not only for researchers and for students, but also for citizens and consumers, not to mention firms and public authorities.

The second pillar is the development of motivating and feasible solutions that pass the economic, acceptability, technological, and environmental screens. Thoughts on climate change are often either too optimistic (in 2050 or 2060, everything will be better) or too pessimistic (it is too late to act). In the meantime, few solutions, or often dogmatic or counterproductive solutions, are proposed, without an exhaustive analysis being carried out. There is a need for global analyses, which moreover go beyond the borders of the countries implementing solutions to climate change. Transfers of technology, knowledge, and financial means must be implemented in practice and on a large scale. The complexity of these issues can be best addressed through an interdisciplinary approach.