Climate Change Impacts and Policy in the Mediterranean Basin

Energia, agricoltura, adattamento e politiche per il clima nell’area mediterranea: da un’iniziativa congiunta di CMCC e ICCG l’occasione per approfondire temi multidisciplinari e complessi

Le informazioni su questa scuola sono disponibili solamente in lingua inglese

Euro-Mediterranean Center for Climate Change (CMCC)  and
International Center for Climate Governance (ICCG)


In the last decades, the scientific community agreed to consider the Mediterranean basin one of the most vulnerable regions in the world due to the impacts of CC interrelated consequences, its precarious socio-economical conditions, and its fragile political systems. According to the main climate scenarios, the expected growth of the average annual temperature in the Mediterranean region will be slightly higher than that of the world level. An increasing average temperature will directly influence the volume of Mediterranean sea masses while having an indirect impact on precipitations, habitats, and associated ecosystems.
Several studies underline that climate change is often combined with socioeconomic elements, such as agriculture or energy, in a relationship of mutual influence. Therefore, a loss of agricultural productivity may accelerate the rural exodus posing serious problems in the major urban centres and in neighbourhood countries.
Furthermore, the region’s rapid growth, while delivering significant positive impacts for the living conditions of the population, has mainly occurred at the expense of the environmental balance and has often contributed to an increase in social and economical disparity. On the southern shores of the Mediterranean, the Arab Spring has created opportunities for win-win strategies to tackle social, economic, and environmental challenges with a perspective of sustainable development. However, it has also led to the possibility of risk cascades that can only be avoided by developing and using new methods of risk management and governance. Developing new levels of cooperation throughout the Mediterranean has become a fascinating yet daunting task. Trans-Mediterranean cooperation in energy and migration fields is increasingly important. It is also considered an area of strategic importance for Europe because of its geographical location and natural resources. Despite the EU efforts to develop a strong partnership with its southern neighbourhoods, there is still not a coherent climate change policy followed by the Mediterranean region as a whole. This demarcation line makes a dramatic distinction between the northern developed countries and the southern and far-eastern developing ones, all having common but differentiated responsibilities with respect to environmental protection and sustainable development. Hence, since climate change is a cross boundary issue and involves several fields of action (water, energy, wildlife, biodiversity, climate refugees, social conflicts, biodiversity), the induced networking developed in the last decade could be seen as a fruitful opportunity to build adaptation capacity in the Mediterranean.
The main purpose of the School is to deeply investigate the key issues described with the objective to enhance a real awareness among students, policy makers, governments and representatives of the local communities involved. In doing this, an interaction between various disciplines and a deep analysis of multiple factors appears to be fundamental for achieving a concrete understanding of the peculiar situation of the Mediterranean basin.

Impacts –
This module provides participants with a deep understanding of the dynamics of climate change impacts in the Mediterranean basin. As a cross boundary issue, Climate Change (CC) is seen as an unavoidable challenge for scientists, economists, and policy makers. The average annual temperature is expected to grow between 2°C and 6.5°C by the end of the century, raising the volume of the Mediterranean sea masses, causing  serious implications for the dynamics of the lower atmosphere as well as coastal and marine ecosystems. This will also have an impact in the rainfall regime causing new threats to national economies and human health. Nevertheless, the Mediterranean system is extremely diverse and complex. It is also strongly influenced by both the natural characteristics of the Mediterranean basin and the human activities that have been particularly non-sustainable during the past five decades.
Energy – This module analyses the current  unsustainable model of energy consumption in the Mediterranean basin. The expected demographic growth around the Mediterranean Basin is bringing an increasing demand of energy and energy access. Alternative strategies have to be envisioned, which include a more diversified energy mix, less carbon-based, with robust policies aimed at meeting energy needs, improving energy efficiency and promoting RES. A further key element of analysis involves the new geopolitical alliances, which were created in the aftermath of the Arab Spring and the effort of the EU in implementing new and strong partnerships in the energy and migration fields.
Agriculture – Issues related to the interaction between the agricultural sector and climate change in the region are the core of this module. Agriculture is a complex sector and it is highly dependent on climate since heat, light, and water are the main drivers of crop growth. This may have consequences on both food production and costs. It may also accelerate the migration of rural communities in countries bordering the Mediterranean, specifically from North Africa to Europe.
Adaptation – The diversity of cultures, societies, political systems and environmental contexts coexisting in the Mediterranean region, induces different ways of approaching the question of adaptation. Although long-term financial investment decisions could improve adaptation efforts, the uncertainty about the political future of the region presents a difficult obstacle.
Governance – 
The recent political events throughout the Mediterranean have led to the possibility of decreasing risk. Developing new levels of cooperation throughout the Mediterranean has become a fascinating yet daunting task. Trans-Mediterranean cooperation in energy and migration fields is increasingly important. Despite the efforts of the EU in establishing a multilateral and multisectoral partnership with the countries of the Mediterranean basin, there is still not  a coherent climate change policy followed by the Mediterranean region as a whole and climate governance of the Mediterranean area is often confronted with institutional problems. A further problem relates to the fragmentation and lack of uniformity of the coastal zones of the riparian States’ costal zones and the persistence of a corresponding “EEZ dilemma”.

The School is targeted to doctoral and post-doctoral students in environmental and resource economics, law, political science and engineering from all over the world. Admission is conditional on the presentation by each student of his/her doctoral or post-doctoral work.
Application is open to both European and non European citizens. Given the highly interactive activities planned at the Summer School, the number of participants is limited to 20. There is no participation fee. All applicants can apply for a scholarship.

In order to apply please send a single .pdf file containing the following documents to the Summer School Secretariat:

  • the Application Form complete in all its field;
  •  your curriculum vitae;
  • a letter of reference from your supervisor;
  • the first draft of the paper you will present (no length constraint).

The deadline for applications is 15 January 2013

Incomplete or late applications will not be considered.
Presentation of your submitted paper is conditional on acceptance to the Summer School.
All accepted students must attend the Summer School for its entire duration.
Students who do not respect the stated deadlines will not be admitted.
As the School will be conducted in English, applicants should have an adequate working knowledge of that language.

All applications must arrive to the Summer School Secretariat by 15 January 2013.
Acceptance notifications will be sent out from 1 March 2013.
Final papers for presentation must be received by the Summer School Secretariat before the 10 May 2013.

Summer School Secretariat
Ms. Angela Marigo
Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change (CMCC)
[email protected]

Valeria BARBI,
Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change (CMCC),
Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, Venice (Italy)
Topic: Climate change governance

Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change (CMCC),
Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV), Bologna (Italy)
Topic: Adaptation strategies

Silvio GUALDI,
Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change (CMCC),
Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV), Bologna (Italy)
Topic: The diverse and complex dynamics of climate change impacts

Manfred HAFNER,
Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change (CMCC),
Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, Milan (Italy)
Topic: The energy sector and related policies

Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change (CMCC),
University of Tuscia, Viterbo (Italy)
Topic: Climate change impacts and policies in the agriculrural sector

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