Politics and policy

Policy and politics are fundamental to understanding and responding to the climate crisis. At the international level, climate policy and politics have evolved through structures like the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement. Policy and politics have also shaped dynamics at the domestic level, spanning not only national and sub-national government action but also civil society and non-government organisations.

Climate change policy involves responses to mitigation and adaptation challenges and opportunities. On the greenhouse gas emissions reduction side, policy mechanisms include carbon pricing, emissions trading schemes, nature-based solutions or renewable energy technologies. On the adaptation side, policies range across systems including the built environment, education and training, health and human services, natural environment, primary production, transport and the water cycle systems.

While climate policies respond to the climate crisis, climate change politics shape, enable and constrain the possibilities available. Politics are influenced by different social, economic and political forces that will ultimately determine whether we can secure a safer climate future.

Program Lead

Professor Robyn Eckersley, Redmond Barry Distinguished Professor in the Discipline of Political Science, School of Social and Political Sciences

Early career researcher co-lead

Dr Erin Fitz-Henry, Senior Lecturer in Social & Cultural Anthropology, School of Social and Political Sciences

Grants and Resources