Chatham House at COP26

Join us online and in person at the COP26 where we will hold events delving into timely topics that reflect the research conducted by the Environment and Society Programme.

Research event
1 November 2021 TO 11 November 2021 — 8:00AM TO 6:00PM

Within the next decade climate change will increasingly disrupt our lives. Climate hazards such as droughts, flooding, and wildfires will strike us harder, and more often. Climate risks and the world security impacts of climate change are increasingly recognised as challenges with which the global community needs to engage.

Our online only sessions offer unique access to thought leadership, best practice and insight on climate risk and security from heads of state, policy influencers and academics. It will be an inclusive space in which to build relationships, explore robust and up-to-date evidence and engage in open and constructive debate.

How to register

Blue Zone physical events: Attendees within the Blue Zone must be accredited by the UNFCCC, and can join our events on a first come, first served basis. However, many of these events can be accessed virtually through the ‘Chatham House at COP26: Climate Risk and Security Pavilion’ which is complimentary to all members of the public.

Online only events: Registration is complimentary to all members of the public here.

By registering, you are able to access any event taking place on the platform from 1st to 11th November. An agenda for the fortnight, and daily reminders will be emailed to you so you can attend sessions and view the content of most relevance to you, and at your leisure.

Please note

For the best viewing experience please join us from your desktop, using Google Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge. This platform is not compatible with Internet Explorer or Safari.

If you have any questions or issues during the event, please click on the ‘Help’ button in the top right of the screen to be connected with our support team or contact us.


Monday 1 November (GMT – all timings subject to change)

Blue Zone | Ukraine 2030: Journey to a green transition

Currently, Ukraine’s energy transition trajectory is positive, but it lags behind global averages for environmental sustainability. Lowering carbon intensity is one of the areas that requires a concerted strategy across private sector, state, and non-state actors. 

Focusing on Ukraine’s green transition, this event has two parts:

Part I: Ukraine’s climate agenda: Shaping green future today

Join Professor Tim Benton, Director, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House, in conversation with Volodymyr Zelenskyy, President of Ukraine, as they explore:

  • Climate change mitigation strategies and decarbonisation.
  • Adaptation and climate risks: the effects on supply chains.
  • International relations and political drivers of the green transition.

Part II: Becoming a frontrunner in decarbonisation: What is a viable strategy for Ukraine?   

This panel event takes a deeper dive into the key challenges of decarbonizing Ukraine’s economy:

  • Public policy: What are the most effective incentives to decarbonise? Is Ukraine’s commitment to European integration a viable anchor for a new regulatory framework?
  • Private investment: How are companies approaching the dilemma of current costs to decarbonise and future benefits from green modernization?
  • Preparedness for risks: In view of the upcoming climate impacts, how can Ukraine build a climate-smart (including resilient) economy? What would be right balance of investing in resilience building vs investment in mitigation?
  • Public pressure: What is the societal awareness about climate risk of high carbon emissions? How can civil society facilitate the change in a right direction towards more ambitious NDC goals related to carbon?
  • Peer support: How can the West best assist Ukraine in its energy transition? Is it more about technology, funding, right incentives?


Chair: Professor Tim Benton, Research Director, Emerging Risks; Director, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Antony Froggatt, Senior Research Fellow and Deputy Director, Environment and Society Programme
Oleksandr Dombrovskyi, Vice-President of MHP, President of MHP Eco Energy, Chairman of the Board of Public Union Global 100% RE Ukraine
Olga Stefanishyna, Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration
Maxim Timchenko, Chief Executive Officer, DTEK
Dmytro Los, Chairman, UBTA
Iryna Stavchuk, Deputy Minister for Environmental Protection and Natural Resources, Ukraine


The event is hosted by the Ukrainian Business and Trade Association (UBTA), in partnership with Chatham House and in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.


Blue Zone | China, EU and United States: Optimistic outcomes and ways forward

Although considerable progress has been made since COP25, there remains much to do to stay on track to meet the Paris Agreement. While many elements of national pledges to the UNFCCC have been made prior to the Glasgow summit, there are key opportunities to advance international co-operation during COP26, and beyond. 

Bringing together a high-level expert panel from across these vital parties, this event explores:

  • What additional measures could China, the EU and the US propose?
  • How might these commitments be received?
  • The post COP26 agenda: To what extend does the Summit lay the groundwork for a more ambitious international climate agenda in 2022 and beyond?


Chair: Antony Froggatt, Deputy Director and Senior Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Dr Sam Geall, CEO of China Dialogue; Associate Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Jiangwen Guo, Senior Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Claire Healy, Director of the Washington DC Office, E3G
Simon Sharpe, Deputy Director, Energy, Transport and Nature, COP26 Unit, UK Cabinet Office


This event is co-hosted with RUSI, as part of the ‘Transatlantic Dialogues’ project funded by Carnegie Corporation of New York.


Online only | Cascading climate risks: Perspectives from around the world

Through a series of engaging TED-style talks, this roundtable showcases examples of cross-border climate risks from regions around the world. Including stories and case studies from the Hindu Kush Himalaya, Caribbean, West and Central Africa, South-East Asia and the Pacific, and Europe – the talks will cut through the complexity of climate risks and reveal their impacts in real terms.

The panel explores:

  • Implications of cascading climate risks for policymakers: How a step-change in regional and global cooperation on adaptation could better manage the impacts of these risks on our economies, environments and societies. 
  • The opportunities for regional or global adaptation programmes that maximise the co-benefits shared adaptation action could bring. 
  • Critical bottlenecks that are holding back progress to strengthen global resilience to these sorts of risks, and the solutions we need to implement across scales.


Katy Harris, Director, Adaptation Without Borders
Tabby Njung’e, Monitoring and Evaluation Expert, Justdiggit Foundation
Magnus Benzie, Research Fellow, Stockholm Environment Institute
Arun Shrestha, Regional Programme Manager, River Basins, Cryosphere and Atmosphere; Senior Climate Change Specialist, International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development
Sarah Opitz-Stapleton, Research Associate, Global Risks and Resilience, Overseas Development Institute
Hanne Knaepen, Policy Officer, European Centre for Development Policy Management
Sivapuram Ventaka Rama Krishna Prabhakar , Research Manager, Institute for Global Environmental Strategies
Joseph Siegel, Education Subcommittee Chair, Mediators Beyond Borders International
Owen Grafham, Assistant Director, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House


CASCADES funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 821010, Adaptation Without Borders.


Wednesday 3 November

Online only | Macrofinancial relevance of cascading climate risks: Insights for investors and financial supervisors

The direct, indirect, and cascading climate impacts that could unfold are influenced by country-specific exposures and structural characteristics, and can compound with other sources of stress. However, financial industry players and policy makers still lack a coherent framework and tools to assess the macro-financial criticality of cascading climate risks to their business, and to adapt risk management. 

The expert panel discusses: 

  • What are the drivers and potential implications of cascading climate risks for macroeconomic and financial stability?
  • Through which channels can climate risks cascade on financial actors’ balance sheets and financial stability? Do we have the right tools to assess them? 
  • Could cascading risks be integrated into financial risk management of financial actors and supervisors, and what implications would this have on financial regulation? 


Chair: Irene Monasterolo, Assistant Professor, Climate Economics and Finance, WU Wien
Sanja Madzarevic Sujster, Senior Country Economist, Macroeconomics, Trade and Investment, World Bank
Romain Svartzman, Economist, Banque de France
Professor Stefano Battiston, IPCC Lead Author; Associate Professor in Sustainable Finance and Networks, University of Zurich
Marie Briere, Head of Investor Research Center, Amundi                                                                      Siân Bradley, Senior Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme


CASCADES funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 821010, Vienna University of Economics and Business, Waddesdon.


Online only | In conversation with Carlos Alvarado Quesada

President Carlos Alvarado Quesada joins Chatham House during his visit to COP26 in Glasgow. Elected in 2018, President Alvarado Quesada has initiated a series of policies to reduce Costa Rica’s carbon emissions and promote the country’s environmental and social policies beyond its borders. On 17 October, Costa Rica was named a winner of the ‘Earthshot Prize’ for protecting and resorting nature. Their green initiatives have doubled the number of trees and is seen as a role model for others to follow.
This timely discussion considers the key to Costa Rica’s success and how that could be duplicated beyond its borders:

  • To what extent can countries such as Costa Rica build coalitions and commitments to reduce carbon emissions and meet international targets?
  • What are the immediate threats of climate change to Latin American and Caribbean economies and populations given current projections?
  • What is the potential role of developed countries and multilateral development agencies in climate change adaption for at-risk countries and populations?
  • What is the agenda of the President at the summit? And what are his expectations?
  • Having led an international effort to pool research and technology in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, what is the future of global health cooperation?
  • Within Latin America is there a shared vision of the environment and climate change?


Chair: Dr Robin Niblett, Director and Chief Executive, Chatham House
Carlos Alvarado Quesada, President, Costa Rica


Blue Zone | Circular economy for climate-resilient development, infrastructure and industrial innovation

Building sustainable and inclusive infrastructures in low- and middle-income countries will require trillions of new investments from both public and private sources. New financing mechanisms and global initiatives such as the Build Back Better World (B3W), announced by the G7 in 2021, are emerging to address this financing gap. The shift to a circular economy is also necessary to meet the targets of the Paris Agreement, to build back better and achieve the SDGs. Resource efficiency and circular economy should therefore need to be deeply integrated into new global infrastructure initiatives and the investment mechanisms.

Our expert panel unpacks some of the following concepts and questions:  

  • How to integrate resource efficiency and circularity principles into new global infrastructure initiatives such as the G7’s Build Back Better World and the Clean Green Initiative (CGI)?   
  • What are the most promising financing mechanisms and models that can provide de-risking and increase investor confidence?  
  • What types of political and financial incentives are needed to increase the use of circularity and improve resource efficiency throughout the full life cycle of infrastructure? 


Chair: Dr Patrick Schröder, Senior Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Charles Ikeah, Director, Pollution Control and Environmental Health, Federal Ministry of Environment, Nigeria
Germano Bremm, Secretary of Environment, Urbanism and Licensing, City of Porto Alegre, Brazil
Alex José Saer Saker, Director of Climate Change and Risk Assessment, Ministry of the Environment, Colombia
Davinah Milenge-Uwella, Principal Programme Coordinator, Climate Change and Green Growth, African Development Bank


The MAVA Foundation.


Thursday 4 November

Blue Zone | Carbon neutrality is possible and affordable: Climate action and the way forward – examples from China and the UK and global implications

Chatham House and Tsinghua University are collaborating to support sustainable and inclusive economic growth in China and the UK. The programme ensures that actionable and systematic information is used to assess the trajectories of national and global emissions decision-makers, both by a select group of international organizations and by strategic planners in government in China. Use of such information enables the UK and China to align emissions trajectories with goals for avoiding dangerous climate change. 

This panel discussion assesses how the two countries are integrating their short-term carbon reduction and neutrality targets into national mitigation plans by:

  • Reviewing the long-term climate targets in China and the UK.
  • Presenting international and China-specific findings on energy technological trends.
  • Considering what they might tell us about least-cost climate mitigation solutions.


Co-chair: Professor Fei Teng, Institute of Energy, Environment and Economy, Tsinghua University
Co-chair: Jiangwen Guo, Senior Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Professor Dadi Zhou, Member, National Expert Committee on Climate Change, China
Dr Xianchun Tan, Deputy director, Institute of Science and Development, Chinese Academy of Science, China
Professor Cameron Hepburn, Director of the Economics of Sustainability Programme, University of Oxford
Professor Jiankun He, Director, National Expert Committee on Climate Change, China
Chris Stark, CEO, Committee on Climate Change, UK
Further speakers to be announced.


Tsinghua University, Oxford University, Committee on Climate Change (UK) and National Expert Committee on Climate Change (China), funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).


Online only | Transparency matters: Transition to net-zero

The transition to a sustainable, decarbonised economy is reshaping the extractive industries. Demand for fossil fuels is likely to decline as the planet starts to diversify its energy mix. As efforts to reach ‘net zero’ carbon accelerate, collective action by government, industry and civil society will be necessary.

Open data is needed to inform public debate and underpin decision making. Citizens have the right to understand how income flowing to the local level may be affected through the transition, how government policy on the development of the extractive sector will respond, and how current revenues could be used to build resilience.

The webinar will:

  • Demonstrate the need for collective action in fossil-fuel-dependent countries and the role of transparency and multi-stakeholder dialogue in supporting a transition to net zero.
  • Mobilize government and industry champions and showcase leadership by fossil fuel-dependent countries.
  • Raise awareness among governments, companies and civil society stakeholders about ways in which EITI data can inform debate and policymaking on the energy transition.


Chair: Siân Bradley, Senior Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Rt Hon Helen Clark, President, Chatham House
Hon Sandra Sandoval, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Mines, Colombia
Dr Ego Syahrial, Secretary General, Ministry of Energy, Indonesia
Brendan Devlin, Strategy and Foresight Counsellor, Directorate General for Energy, European Commission
Rohitesh Dhawan, CEO, International Council on Mining and Metals
Nellie Busingye, Regional Coordinator for East and Southern Africa, PWYP Africa


Online only | Structural Change: Reshaping the fossil-fuel powered economies

Avoiding dangerous levels of climate change and delivering on the Paris Agreement require a dramatic shift in the way that we provide and use energy. Enabling the transition away from an unsustainable supply of oil and gas is a critical part of that challenge. This segment will focus on the need for a phase out of fossil fuels, while ensuring a just transition where no one is left behind. The fireside chat will feature a discussion around different pathways to a net zero energy future.


Chair: Tasneem Essop, Executive Director, CAN international
H.E. Andrea Meza Murillo, Minister of Environment and Energy, Costa Rica
François Legault, Premier of Québec, Canada


Friday 5 November

Online only | Next generation ideas: How young people want to address climate change and tackle climate risks

Young people have been at the forefront of climate activism in recent years, but too often they are not consulted on the tangible policy decisions that must be taken to alleviate the crisis.

This roundtable sees young people from the Common Futures Conversations community at Chatham House will sharing their perspectives on how climate change is affecting their local areas, and how climate risks stand to affect their lives. They will also present their policy ideas for addressing different aspects of climate change, from encouraging the green energy transition to adapting to climate-related migration and improving climate education.

  • What are the climate priorities of young people?
  • How should climate policymakers engage with the next generation?
  • And how can young people move from activism to tangible policy change?


Chair: Ben Horton, Communications Manager; Project Lead, Common Futures Conversations, Chatham House
Doyin Akingbulegbe, Common Futures Conversations, Nigeria
Andrew Johnson, Common Futures Conversations, Uganda
Ruth McKelvie, 2050 Climate Group to blurb and speaker slices
Akufuna Muyunda, Resilient 40; Common Futures Conversations, Zambia
Cathy Yitong Li, YOUNGO


Common Futures Conversations


Online only | How to achieve an equitable energy transition in extractive-based developing and emerging economies?

The event will bring together Ministers from Africa, Asia and Latin America to share their perspectives and to discuss what an “equitable pathway” towards a low-carbon economy could look like for extractive-based emerging and developing economies, and how those economies can prepare for the impact of the projected decline in oil, gas and coal demand.

The event also aims to identify international support measures to make this transition happen and concrete commitments by extractive-based developing and emerging economies to reduce the carbon footprint of oil & gas operations.

The objectives of the event are to:

  • Build a common understanding of what an “equitable pathway” towards a low-carbon economy could look like.
  • Recognise the different starting points for developed and developing countries and how this will affect the ability to deliver on commitments made under the Paris Agreement.
  • Discuss the impact on developing countries of the projected decline in oil, gas and coal demand.
  • Improve understanding around the competing objectives that extractive-based emerging and developing economies need to balance, while trying to decarbonise their economies.
  • Discuss the specific challenges that extractive-based emerging and developing economies are facing towards becoming net zero by 2050.
  • Explore avenues for accelerating low-carbon transition through existing or new partnerships between advanced economies and extractive-based emerging and developing economies.


Chair: Ragnheiður Elín Árnadóttir, Director, OECD Development Centre
Mathias Cormann, Secretary-General, OECD Development Centre
Mechthild Wörsdörfer, Deputy Director-General, Directorate-General for Energy, European Union Commission
H.E. Juan Carlos Bermeo Calderón, Minister of Energy and Non-Renewable Natural Resources, Republic of Ecuador
H.E. Dr. Ali Allawi, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Republic of Iraq
Alibek Kuantyrov, Vice-Minister of National Economy, Republic of Kazakhstan
H.E. Timipre Sylva, Honourable Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Federal Republic of Nigeria


OECD Development Centre, Carbon Tracker Initiative, Commonwealth Secretariat.


Saturday 6 November

Blue Zone | High-level dialogue on sustainable trade, climate and nature: How can cooperation on trade support climate action and sustainable development?

Chatham House, the TradeHub, UN Environment Programme, and the Forum on Trade, Environment and the SDGs (TESS), are convening a high-level dialogue at COP26 on how trade and trade policy can support nature positive climate action and sustainable development. Speakers will address three key themes: 

  • Multilateral approaches and the role of international organisations
  • Opportunities for trade ministers to support action on climate mitigation and adaptation
  • Stakeholder perspectives on opportunities to align climate and trade agendas and strategies to build cooperation


Inger Andersen, Executive Director, United Nations Environment Programme
Neil Burgess, Chief Scientist, UNEP-WCMC, GCRF Trade, Development and the Environment Hub (TRADE Hub)
Pamela Coke-Hamilton, Executive Director, International Trade Centre
John Denton, Secretary-General, International Chamber of Commerce
Valdis Dombrovskis, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission
Rebeca Grynspan, Secretary-General, UNCTAD
Hon. Sandra Husbands, Minister in the Ministry of Foreign Trade, Barbados 
Roopa Mehta, President, World Fair Trade Organisation
Damian O’Connor, Minister for Trade and Export Growth, Biosecurity, Land Information, and Rural Communities, New Zealand
Mari Pangestu, Managing Director of Development Policy and Partnerships, World Bank
Jean-Marie Paugam, Deputy Director-General, World Trade Organisation
Andres Valénciano Yamuni, Minister of Foreign Trade, Costa Rica


GCRF TradeHub, UN Environment Programme, and the Forum on Trade, Environment and the SDGs (TESS).


Sunday 7 November

Sustainability Accelerator Speakeasy

This event is in person at Mackintosh at the Willow, 215-217 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow G2 3EX.

Cultural and creative industries are playing an increasingly significant role in raising awareness of the climate crisis and promoting sustainability worldwide. A growing number of artists, cultural and creative leaders are using their talents and resources to draw attention to global challenges, build agency for change, and inspire societies to move towards greater sustainability. From melting iceberg exhibitions, landscape paintings, biodegradable sculptures, musical performances; art nurtures the human ability to communicate and conceptualise complex issues, like the climate crisis, that require multidisciplinary responses and the whole of society’s engagement.

How are cultural leaders and artists breaking down political, communication, and socio-economic barriers to tackle the climate crisis? Come and join us for the second Sustainability Accelerator Speakeasy for an evening conversation on climate, art and the power of culture. Drinks and nibbles will be provided. 


Moderator: Ana Yang, Executive Director, Sustainability Accelerator, Chatham House
Chiara Badiali, Knowledge and Sector Intelligence Lead, Julie’s Bicycle
Maria Gadú, Singer, songwriter and guitarist
Chris Rainier, Photographer, National Geographic


Monday 8 November

Blue Zone | Fair water footprints in the race to climate resilience

This event is part of the Water Pavilion at COP26, and will launch the Glasgow Declaration for Fair Water Footprints. Hear from signatories to the Declaration, including government representatives, civil society, and private sector.


Tuesday 9 November

Online only | Peace and the climate security agenda

What do peace, peacebuilding, conflict and security have to do with COP26?

Hosted by the Geneva Peacebuilding Platform, seven experts come together to discuss urgent priorities at the peace and climate change nexus, joining from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), Protection Approaches, the Quaker United Nations Office, the Geneva Centre for Security Sector Governance (DCAF), International Alert, and CGIAR Climate Security.


Chair: Annika Erickson-Pearson, Moderator, Geneva Peacebuilding Platform
Lindsey Fielder Cook, Representative for Climate Change, Quaker United Nations Office
Dr Kate Ferguson, Co-Executive Director and Head of Policy and Research at Protection Approaches
Viola Csordas, SSR Advisor, Geneva Centre for Security Sector Governance (DCAF)
Mehdi Barhoumi, Programme Manager, International Alert Tunisia


Online only | Policy simulation: Cascading climate impacts

The Cascading Climate Impacts Policy Simulation is an online, narrative-oriented experience that brings participants to the near future, creating a “playground” to explore complex questions:

  • Is it possible to extract and process critical minerals while staying within ecological limits?
  • Can this be done sustainably and in collaboration with local communities/partners around the world?
  • How can we foster collaboration to plan and implement the green transition that is effective, efficient, sustainable, and just, for all?

Simulation structure:

  • Individual exploratory sessions throughout the duration of COP26.
  • An interactive and immersive group simulation session.
  • Additional sessions can be organized or coordinated with interested partners.


Piotr Magnuszewski, Program Leader, Centre for Syst.ems Solutions


CASCADES funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 821010, Centre for Systems Solutions.


Blue Zone | Prioritising support for climate change adaptations in the poorest countries

Within the next decade, climate hazards will have increasingly significant, disruptive impacts. These will not just play out locally, but form part of complex, cascading and compounding hazard-impact pathways which will likely result in global impacts. 

If left unaddressed, such vulnerabilities have the potential to initiate cascading impacts that are likely to have a destabilising effect on national and international security in the near-term. Action is urgently needed to address socio-economic vulnerabilities to climate hazards in Africa and Asia. It is a key way to prevent devastating in-region impacts, and stop them from becoming nexuses of cascading global climate impacts over the next few years. 

This panel will discuss:

  • Explore the pre-2030 climate risks that most concern experts.
  • Discuss the implications of socio-economic vulnerabilities in translating risks into impacts
  • Consider how vulnerable countries can be supported to address risk-amplifying vulnerabilities.
  • Consider what can be done to better track and tackle climate risk.


Chair: Ruth Townend, Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Professor Aled Jones, Director, Global Sustainability Institute, Anglia Ruskin University
Dr Kanta Kumari Rigaud, Lead Environmental Specialist, World Bank 
Oli Brown, Associate Fellow, Chatham House 
Abinash Mohanty, Programme Lead, Risks and Adaptation, Council on Energy, Environment and Water
Dr Daniel Quiggin, Senior Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Manuel Rosini, Chief of Staff and Director Business Development, Office of the Special Coordinator for the Development of the Sahel


Quadrature Climate Foundation


Online only | Learning from emerging practices in addressing climate-related security risks in fragile and conflict-affected contexts

Understanding and addressing compound risks to peace and security associated with climate and environmental change is now an urgent global priority. UNEP has been at the forefront of conducting climate-security analysis, supporting UN missions and country teams to address climate security risks, and implementing innovative projects in fragile and conflict-affected contexts.

This event aims to share the practical experiences and emerging lessons from UNEP’s recent work on climate change and security, including the development of a new data platform to enhance monitoring, analysis and early warning of climate-related security risks, the deployment of climate security advisors to UN mission contexts,  and results from climate-security pilot projects in Sudan and Nepal.

Through interactive small group discussions, practitioners will share learnings from these initiatives and discuss everyday challenges and opportunities associated climate-security action. 


Chair: Silja Halle, Programme Manager, UNEP 
Christophe Hodder, UN Environment and Climate Security Advisor to Somalia, UNEP 
Molly Kellogg, Gender, Peace and Security Advisor, UNEP 
Marie Schellens, Environmental Security Analyst, UNEP  
Dr. Dharam Uprety, Climate and Resilience Thematic Lead, Practical Action, Nepal


United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)


Online only | Adaptation Beyond the EU: Perspectives for Stronger Co-operation with Africa

The new EU adaptation strategy (2021) underlines the need to better link the internal and external dimensions of adaptation with partner countries, particularly in Africa. The panel will discuss how this can be done by looking at 3 overarching themes: science and data generation; governance and policy design; policy implementation and concrete projects on the ground.


Carla Montesi, Director, DG INTPA, EC
Frank McGovern, Director JPI Climate
Hanne Knaepen, Policy Officer, European Centre for Development Policy Management
Katy Harris, Director, Adaptation Without Borders
Estherine Fotabong, Director of Programmes, NEPAD Agency
Christophe Buffet, Climate Change Adaptation Expert, AFD - Agence Française de Développement
Chair: Sally Stevens, Communications & Engagement Manager, Institute for Environmental Analytics


Wednesday 10 November

Blue Zone | UNFCCC Side Event: Averting planetary peril by convening scientists and policymakers to tackle systemic climate risks

Climate change, extreme weather, environmental degradation and socio-economic vulnerabilities present a frightening picture of planetary risks. Those most aware of these risks, however, are not always best placed to tackle them.

Drawing on a series of ground-breaking projects around planetary risks, this UNFCCC side event explores how scientists, researchers and others are working to communicate climate risks to decision-makers and policymakers at the highest levels. Wider audience discussion and Q&A will then provide opportunities to discuss engagement between scientists and policymakers, and consider how these vital links can be strengthened to enable evidence-based policymaking in the face of increasingly urgent planetary peril.

Speakers discuss:

  • Bridging disaster risk and climate risks worlds.
  • Downscaling global climate information to regional level implications.
  • Picturing our future – the visualisation of climate risk, and public profile.
  • Defining systemic risks.
  • Examples of constructive engagement between scientists and policymakers.


Chair: Dr Daniel Quiggin, Senior Research Fellow with the Environment and Society Programme at Chatham House
Professor Tim Benton, Research Director, Emerging Risks; Director, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House 
Professor Regina R Rodrigues, Professor of Physical Oceanography, Federal University of Santa Catarina 
Dr Benjamin Strauss, CEO and Chief Scientist, Climate Central
Professor Jana Sillmann, Research Director, Centre for International Climate Research
Loretta Hieber Girardet, Chief Risk Knowledge, Monitoring and Capacity Development at United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR)
Further speakers to be announced. 


Climate Central, International Science Council.


Thursday 11 November

Online only | Climate risk governance: Insights from UK-China cooperation

Avoiding the worst economic, social and environmental risks of climate change requires a better understanding of what those risks may be. At present there is insufficient understanding among policymakers about the interaction between emissions risks, the direct risks of climate change and some of the systemic risks presented by climate change in China and in international institutions. 

In the absence of neutral ways of gauging those risks, policy makers can be caught in a cycle of ‘new normals’: not realising that the ground is, occasionally quite literally, changing beneath their feet.

This event presents key findings and lessons from this important collaboration.  


Chair: Jiangwen Guo, Senior Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Professor Chao Qingchen, Deputy Director-General, National Climate Center, China Meteorological Administration
Guo Jiangwen, Senior Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Professor Fei Teng, Institute of Energy, Environment and Economy, Tsinghua University
Lord Deben, Chair, Committee on Climate Change
Jessica Henry, Head of Climate Change and Environment, British Embassy in Beijing
Professor Jiankun He, Director, China National Expert Committee on Climate Change
Professor Shaozhou Qi,  Professor, Climate Change and Energy Economics Research Center, Hubei University of Economics
Professor Nigel Arnell, Department of Meteorology, University of Reading
Professor Ye Qi, School of Public Policy and Management, Tsinghua University
Dr Matthew Ives, Senior Researcher, Oxford Martin Post-Carbon Transition Programme
Oli Brown, Associate Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Further speakers to be announced.


Tsinghua University, the University of Oxford, the National Climate Centre of China, the University of Reading, Hubei University of Economics, E3G, funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).


Online only | Climate resilience in intermediate cities of the MENA Region: Opportunities for the European Green Deal

Cities in the Middle East and North Africa region are already suffering from climate impacts, including heat stress, flooding and the pressures of rural-to-urban migration. Future climate scenarios and projected urban growth threaten the stability of the region which can have negative knock-on effects on Europe. 

Through its new Spotlight Study the CASCADES project examines climate vulnerabilities in intermediary cities in the EU’s Southern Neighborhood and wider MENA region. It advocates for systemic approaches to increasing urban climate resilience by strengthening the Water Energy Food (WEF) nexus, as well as other enabling factors such as decentralization. It also provides recommendations on how the external dimension of the European Green Deal can help cities in the region adapt to climate impacts, based on a WEF nexus approach. 

This session featuring EU, civil society and urban experts shares perspectives on:

  • How North-South partnerships can boost WEF nexus approaches in cities of the region.
  • Engaging local actors and optimizing potential for socioeconomic and municipal co-benefits.


Chair: Glada Lahn, Senior Research Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Hannah Abdullah, Senior Research Fellow, Barcelona Centre for International Affairs (CIDOB) 
Karim Elgendy, Associate Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House 
Omar Abu Eid, Energy, Environment and Climate Change Programme Manager, Delegation of the European Union to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
Sarah Arbez, Project Officer, United Cities Lebanon
Hajar Khamlichi, President and Co-founder, Mediterranean Youth Climate Network


CASCADES funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 821010, Barcelona Center for International Affairs (CIDOB),  European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM).


Blue Zone | Building ambition: Scaling finance for sustainable cities

Reducing carbon emissions from cities and the built environment will be vital to meet the Paris Agreement and deliver resilient and sustainable places. – but financing activities that make this decarbonization shift possible remains challenging. Reaching the decarbonization potential of cities will require a greater alignment of finance and investment with their sustainability goals.

During this session experts will discuss: 

  • How can more finance be mobilized to support sustainable cities?   
  • What progress has been made in 2021, including during COP26, and what’s next? 
  • Where do we need to do more work?


Chair: Ana Yang, Executive Director, Chatham House Sustainability Accelerator
Daisy Streatfield, Investor Practices Programme Director, Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change
Kristiina Yang, Project Coordinator, Cities Climate Finance Leadership Alliance
Wadzi Katsidzira, Senior Manager, Global Development Incubator
Christopher Hurst, General Director of the Projects Directorate, European Investment Bank
Mauricio Rodas, Former Mayor of Quito; Senior Fellow, Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center
Suzannah Sherman, Research Associate, Chatham House Sustainability Accelerator
Maria Smith, Director of Sustainability and Physics, Buro Happold; Council Member, RIBA


Online only | Reading back session: Policy pathways from climate risk to policy action

Many policymakers, government officials and politicians understand that climate change poses serious risks. But how can they move from understanding risk to policy action? 
This policy pathways session reports insights obtained from policymakers’ engagement with an interactive digital scenario tool – Policy Pathways: from climate risk to policy action. It is designed to help policymakers to think in new and collaborative ways about how they can use existing policy levers to accelerate the transition to Net Zero.


Dr Lucy Hubble-Rose, Honorary Research Fellow, University College London
Dr Kris De Meyer, Research Fellow, Kings College London


UCL Climate Action Unit, Fast Familiar, funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO).


Online only | Building resilience against climate security risks

Climate change poses significant national, international, and human security risks. Climate change has been identified as a factor driving precursors to the North African and Syrian uprisings in 2011. The importance of flashpoints for security and stability such as water scarcity and the sea ice retreat are clear and require engaging a wider set of actors to move climate security higher up the political agenda.

This panel discusses: 

  • How key institutions are meaningfully integrating climate security in the areas of defense, international development, foreign aid and diplomacy.
  • Current and future challenges, opportunities, and policy implications to mainstreaming considerations of climate-related security risks, whilst ensuring that organisations reduce their own environmental impacts.
  • What additional knowledge and capacity is required going forward and build international consensus on governance reforms and cooperative approaches to collectively manage climate-related security risks beyond COP26.


Chair: Neil Morisetti, Associate Fellow, Environment and Society Programme, Chatham House
Lt Gen Richard Nugee, Climate Change and Sustainability Strategy Lead, UK Ministry of Defence
Andrew Harper, Special Advisor to the High Commissioner for Climate Action, UNHCR
Janani Vivekananda, Head of Programme, Climate Diplomacy and Security, Adelphi


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