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Advancing Climate Policy

Dots form an arc, first blue then turning orange at the apex and then turning blue towards the decline

The Interdisciplinary Working Group on Advancing Climate Policy convenes Concordia University researchers, students, and members of the Montreal community to develop a better shared understanding of the opportunities and constraints on climate action.

Global climate change is fundamentally interdisciplinary. It combines natural scientific expertise about the impacts of a changing climate, ethical considerations about responsibility and equity, political questions about winners and losers from different courses of action, and ultimately practical questions about designing effective policy responses.

Our Working Group aims to reflect the IPCC's three main pillars, and focuses on understanding the unequal impacts of climate change, efforts to adapt, and pathways for decarbonization.

We are interested in understanding how decarbonization successes across jurisdictions can inform climate policy in Canada, Montreal, and at Concordia. Decarbonization confronts powerful vested interests that have blocked reforms in the past. We will explore how groups have organized creatively to circumvent obstructionism and build support for climate action. We are particularly interested in inclusive policy responses that do not perpetuate inequality and marginalization.

Different (excellent!) groups at Concordia already advocate for a climate emergency, support for the Sustainable Development Goals, and divestment, among other climate-related actions. Our group establishes a complementary space for academic conversations on climate change. We are open to members from all units at the University, as well as from the broader Montreal community, who are interested in academic discussions about climate policy.


  • Alexandra Lesnikowski; Geography, Planning and Environment
  • Sam Rowan; Political Science


  • Owen Miller, Masters of Public Policy and Public Administration, Department of Political Science

Key questions:

  • What can we learn from successful decarbonization initiatives around the world
  • How should we balance efforts to mitigate and adapt to climate impacts?
  • How can climate policy be implemented equitably?

Group members:

  • Alexandra Lesnikowski; Geography, Planning and Environment
  • Sam Rowan; Political Science
  • Effrosyni Diamantoudi; Economics
  • Shannon Lloyd; Management
  • Damon Matthews; Geography, Planning and Environment
  • Amy Poteete; Political Science
  • Seth Wynes; Geography, Planning and Environment
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