Preparing for the world beyond 2030



Achieving the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out in the 2030 Agenda requires holistic Sustainable Development Pathways (SDPs) that maximise synergies and manage trade-offs among SDGs, not only until 2030 but in the long-term. Over the last 3.5 years, the project SHAPE – Sustainable Development pathways achieving Human well-being while safeguarding the climate And Planet Earth – developed scenarios for long-term Sustainable Development Pathways and modelled them with multiple integrated assessment models, complemented by models of industrial ecology and equity. The project’s multi-method approach additionally involved a co-creative narrative and scenario design process, as well as governance analyses. Next to IDOS, the consortium consisted of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), the University of Utrecht (UU), the International Institute of Applied System Analysis (IIASA), the Stockholm Resilience Centre (SRC), the Research Institute for Sustainability (RIFS) and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).

At its digital final conference on 16 February 2023, the SHAPE consortium presented the results of its scenario building and co-design process. The SHAPE narratives and scenarios reflect different perspectives on how to pursue Sustainable Development through Economy-driven Innovation (EI), Resilient Communities (RC) or Managing Global Commons (MC). Overall, the respective target-seeking scenarios show alternative pathways how the Paris Agreement and the SDGs could be reached.

Screenshot: Session 4 SHAPE Abschlusskonferenz


The IDOS team, consisting of Ines Dombrowsky, Ariel Hernandez, and Gabriela Iacobuta, contributed social science and governance theories and knowledge to the development of the narratives and assessed the modelled scenarios from a governance and policy perspective. They presented their findings in session 4 on Governing the Transformation. Déborah García-Luna from the NGO Voluntad Organizada A.C. (Mexico) commented on governance issues in the SHAPE scenarios from a Latin American perspective, and Julia Leininger from IDOS discussed how governance aspects could be further strengthened as the scenario process continues.

The SHAPE project was initiated under the ERA-NET AXIS Call by the JPI Climate, and was funded by FORMAS (SE), FFG/BMBWF (AT), DLR/BMBF (DE), NWO (NL) and RCN (NO) with co-funding by the European Union.

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