We have a commitment to addressing the world’s pressing issues on climate change and decarbonization. Our campaigns focus on specific topics transforming research into tangible solutions that can help in transforming our systems to a deeply decarbonized world.

Climate Governance

Climate governance is a crucial process in policy making and impacts climate actions taken by every country.

International climate governance

The Paris Agreement has put structures in place for climate targets and actions to be decided by each country, but international processes inside and outside the UNFCCC still critically impact policy making and decisions taken by every country.  

The DDP’s International climate governance work engages with these international processes to make them effectively support the objectives of the Paris Climate Agreement. We seek to contribute to the ratcheting-up of collective ambition emerging from combined national targets. We also work on the enhancement of international cooperation to better facilitate the effective implementation of ambitious national actions. 

Our work promotes the idea that international cooperation must build on country needs and that only a bottom-up process would enable systemic transformations that are compatible with enhanced climate ambitions of every country. We do so by relying on the in-depth work conducted by the DDP at the country level which informs how international processes can be oriented to best address the needs of the countries for their national transformations.  

The DDP’s International climate governance work operates through two complementary channels. 

On the one hand, we directly engage with the UNFCCC as the main policy space where international climate issues are discussed. The specific focus will evolve every year according to our assessments on where DDP insights can be most useful. A part of our work is in elaborating technical insights emerging from the DDP analysis and an ad-hoc engagement with key players of the UNFCCC discussions (policymakers, negotiators or key influencers of the international climate community) to ensure visibility and ownership of these insights. This stream of activity also seeks to favor ownership of the UNFCCC processes inside countries, notably in the Global South, as a way to support their engagement in international policymaking processes. 

On the other hand, the DDP’s International climate governance also seeks to establish bridges between global climate governance as it develops in the UNFCCC and other international fora or processes.  Examples of this include political momentum like G7/G20, cross-cutting agendas like the SDGs, and regional political processes on development and sustainable development or sectoral processes like the international negotiations on maritime transport under the IMO or aviation under ICAO.       

This bridging effort aligns these processes and the convergences of their decisions so that their combined impact can effectively support national transitions and global decarbonization. This workstream is supported by a systemic approach and a holistic methodology adopted by the DDP, informing the complementary work between discussions which otherwise may remain disconnected. 

Sectoral transformations

Our work contributes to decarbonizing hard-to-decarbonize sectors, which  produce the majority of greenhouse gas emissions. Sectoral transformations of these sectors are therefore necessary to reach the Paris Agreement Goal of 1.5°C. Our work focuses on three sub-sectors: freight, shipping and green iron. 


While freight emissions account for about 40% of all transport GHG emissions, most transport-related international discussions and national strategies developed in NDCs and LTSs are focused on passenger mobility. When freight is addressed, strategies are mostly focused on the required technological shift of vehicles and fuels. It completely overlooks the systemic transformations of the production, consumption and trading organization, as well as of the logistics organization.  

We promote a holistic approach to decarbonize national freight transport by 2050, which requires a consistent articulation of technological changes with structural and systemic changes affecting the demand and modal structure of the transport system. This means better including solutions based on new organizational patterns to structurally reduce the tons transported, the kilometers traveled, as well as the role of road freight in the logistics system. To do this, we are building in-country analysis to show that new production and consumption patterns, new localization patterns of production and sourcing activities, new delivery patterns and constraints for the logistics system, new financing and planning patterns of infrastructures, new regulatory patterns of infrastructure access, are such new organizational patterns and mitigation solutions to consider. We raise awareness and engage  with influential voices in the freight and climate sector within countries and actively participate in the UNFCCC processes. 

Our key activities include: 

  • Producing key evidence for the consideration of systemic mitigation options based on nationally modelled deep decarbonization pathways  
  • Policy briefs on policy challenges and critical international cooperation activities to support the implementation of systemic mitigation options 
  • Participating and organizing policy dialogues at national and international level to feed policy processes around freight decarbonization  


The shipping industry’s current strategy focuses all its efforts on the technological decarbonization of fuels: using electro-based fuels like ammonia. The industry  currently does not consider the possibility of a significant reduction of “movements and distances” – or the demand side of shipping. It assumes a continuity of the current geographical structure of the maritime routes and international production organization until 2050. 

We promote a holistic approach to decarbonize maritime transport by 2050, going beyond the technological development of e-fuels. We aim to raise awareness about the importance of addressing the demand side of shipping to produce a credible decarbonization strategy for maritime transport. To do this, we are building evidence to show that reducing movements and distances is a core component of decarbonizing the shipping industry. We raise awareness and engage with influencers in the maritime sector and participate in the International Maritime Organization’s processes. 

Our key activities include: 

  • Producing an Issue brief about global supply chains, UNFCCC & IMO processes, and revision of the IMO GHG strategy and disseminating findings to key influencers in the IMO 
  • Participating in intersessional working group on the reduction of GHG emissions from ships 
  • Modeling global pathways on shortening trade distances (NDC Aspects) 
  • Policy briefs on policy challenges and critical international cooperation activities to support a structural shortening of trade distances consistent with the decarbonization of maritime transport 
  • Dissemination of key insights and interventions towards COP28/SBSTA 59 

Green iron

Steel manufacturing produces 8% of total GHG emissions globally, producing more carbon dioxide than any other heavy industry. The steel and iron sector are also the largest consumers of coal. To meet climate goals, the steel industry’s emissions must fall by at least 50% by 2050. However, recent advances in technology allow for the production of green steel or green iron, which will help decarbonizethe sector. 

The steel industry accounts for 5% of the EU’s carbon emissions. We are promoting among EU policymakers and other stakeholders the idea that green iron trade with key developing countries will facilitate Europe’s path to decarbonization. We are analyzing the socio-economic costs and benefits of green iron trade in Europe, as well as identifying measures needed to secure the EU’s access to competitively priced green iron. 

Our key activities include: 

  • Producing a policy paper on the global narratives of the industry sector, building from the country analysis of decarbonization pathways to highlight the international conditions of transformation of this sector (IMAGINE, possibly NDC Aspects) 
  • Assessing the socioeconomics of alternative value-chains for the EU’s decarbonization of steel 
  • Writing a Policy Brief on key findings from our work 
  • Organizing a policy dialogue with key stakeholders and influencers 

Paradigm Shift in Finance

A paradigm shift in finance is needed. International climate finance cooperation must be designed to finance the full range of activities that are necessary for countries to effectively implement the systems’ transformations required to achieve deep decarbonization and national development priorities. To this aim, international climate finance cooperation must be designed to finance the full range of activities for countries to pursue their transition, but the internal structure of international financial institutions and the paradigms on which they ground their decisions is not adequate to fulfill these needs. To this aim, the needs of the countries should notably be at the center of the new financial architecture. These issues are under discussion in the context of the on-going process for the reform of multilateral financial organizations. 

Just Energy Transition Partnerships

Just Energy Transition Partnerships (JETPs) are a new funding model created to help global south countries transition from fossil energy and toward clean energy, in a way that ensures social justice and development goals remain an important part of each country’s transition. So far, JETP agreements have been signed by South Africa, Vietnam, India, Indonesia, and Senegal. 

Drawing lessons from current JETPs as a new approach to finance, we design country-driven approaches that are supported by effective international cooperation on finance. We promote this idea with finance actors, especially development banks.

Our key activities include:

  • Building/exploring/strengthening partnerships that can help reach ministries of finance (in donors and recipient countries), as well as key actors of international development finance
  • Synthesizing the limitations of the current financial system to address both climate change and development
  • Ensuring the continuity of the Senegal JETP deal in the context of the DDP-Senegal project
  • Contributing to the development of “A pilot South African Coal Retirement Mechanism (CRM)” to discuss JET-P pertinence and adequacy to support coal phase down
  • Participating in all relevant international fora (FICS, G20, follow-ups of the Paris Summit, COP28)