Summer School: Extreme Events and Energy Transition - Tackling the Challenges of Climate Change by Integrating Social and Complex Systems Science

Policies and Targets
Technology and Standards
Behaviours and Social
Urban Areas
Transport and Mobility
Energy Generation and Distribution


A general trend of increased interdependency exposes the social-ecological systems of our planet to ever more frequent and geographically distributed extreme events (power black-outs, droughts, extended floods, etc.) and poses fundamental energy sustainability challenges to any endeavour aiming to tackle climate change through renewable energies.

To increase the current understanding of involved phenomena and intervention capabilities, it is necessary to deal with physical processes in combination with social ones.

The Summer School on Extremes and Energy Transition aims at exploring how the integration of complex system approaches with elements of social organisation and adaptation can enable important advancements in this area.

The event is organised by Energy Efficiency and Renewables Unit C2 of the Joint Reserach Centre in collaboration with JRC Disaster Risk Management Unit E.1, Lancaster Univeristy and Durham University (UK), Institute for Geosciences and Environmental Research (FR) and University of Padova (IT), Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona (ES), Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (DE).


Addressed questions

How can the proposed integration enlighten about research and policy approaches that are needed to better deal with extreme events and energy transition sustainability?

Which investigation strategies might be necessary to improve the current understanding about how the social and the physical dimensions interact?

Which concrete actions are needed to advance in this area and benefit from a more active involvement of affected communities?


One of the main objectives of the summer school is to engage researchers and practitioners working in the above mentioned area under a complex systems or social science perspective in order to show the added value of the proposed integration and new interdisciplinary ways to address the problems at stake.

Another objective consists in stimulating cross-fertilization between the academy and policy area and in establishing a network of organisations and research institutes that can continue developing the proposed integration strategies.

The Summer School on Extremes and Energy Sustainability will address these questions by gathering practitioners, PhD students and postdoc researchers working in the area from both a social and a physical/engineering perspective.


How to Apply and Practical Information

The summer school WORKPROGRAMME can be downloaded from this webpage. If you are interested in participating in the event and are a practitioner, or a PhD student or a postdoc/advanced researcher working in the addressed areas either from a social or a physical/engineering perspective, please send your CV and motivation letter to and

Application deadline:  31 May, 2019.

Deadline for selection of participants: 30 June, 2019

Maximum number of selected participants: 15

Selected participants will receive a formal invitation letter from the JRC. Travel and accommodation costs will be reimbursed according to the rules indicated in this letter. These costs include costs for travel (in economy class) to and from the JRC and hotel costs. Lunches will be offered by the JRC. No other cost will be reimbursed. Flights and hotel can be booked only upon reception of the formal invitation letter. This letter will include other practical information concerning hotels that can be considered for accommodation and how to arrive at the JRC Ispra site where the event will take place.
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