Seminar: Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation... Trade-off or Complement?

Professor Stephen Schneider
Wednesday, 25 February, 2009

The UNSW Institute of Environmental Studies (IES) will host a seminar by one of the founders of climate change research, Professor Stephen Schneider from Stanford University.

Professor Schneider will contrast the typical economist's view of mitigation and adaptation trade-offs versus the view he holds - that we must adapt to what we can't avoid, and avoid what we can't adapt to.

He will also discuss how adaptive capacity helps to dictate what levels of mitigation are needed to stave off dangerous climate change, providing topical examples.

Professor Stephen Schneider

Stephen H. Schneider is the Melvin and Joan Lane Professor for Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies, Professor of Biological Sciences; Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering; and a Senior Fellow in the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford University.

Dr. Schneider received his PhD in Mechanical Engineering and Plasma Physics from Columbia University in 1971. He was awarded a postdoctoral fellowship at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in 1972 and was a member of the scientific staff of NCAR from 1973-1996, where he co-founded the Climate Project.

Internationally recognised for research, policy analysis and outreach in climate change, Professor Schneider focuses on climate change science, integrated assessment of ecological and economic impacts of human-induced climate change, and identifying viable climate policies and technological solutions. He has consulted with federal agencies and/or White House staff in the Nixon, Carter, Reagan, G.H.W. Bush, Clinton and G.W. Bush administrations.

Currently, Professor Schneider is counselling policy makers about the importance of using risk management strategies in climate-policy decision making, given the uncertainties in future projections of global climate change and related impacts. In addition to continuing to serve as advisor to decision-makers, he consults with corporate executives and other stakeholders in industry and the non-profit sectors regarding possible climate related events and is actively engaged in improving public understanding of science and the environment through extensive media communication and public outreach.

Time: Monday 16 March, 10:30 am to 12:00pm
Venue: Leighton Hall, The John Niland Scientia Building (Grid G19 on the UNSW Campus Map)
RSVP: Sarah Terkes -

Click here to download flyer (PDF 1MB).