Dr. Christine Merk

Topics: Behavioral Economics, Climate, Sustainable Development

Christine Merk - Kiel Institute

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Main research interests

  • Climate Engineering
  • Nudging Sustainable Consumption
  • Dialogue on Climate Change Economics

Christine Merk is the Deputy Director of the Research Center Global Commons and Climate Policy at the Kiel Institute. Her main research interest are individuals’ trade-offs between mitigation, carbon dioxide removal (CDR) and stratospheric aerosol injection. She conducts field experiments and survey experiments to explore individuals’ perceptions of and reactions to various climate engineering approaches and climate policy instruments.

She is currently involved in two research projects that look at lay perceptions of ocean-based carbon dioxide removal: She leads the work package on public perceptions of marine CDR in the H2020 consortium OceanNETs and contributes to SeaStore on seagrass restoration funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. She contributes the insights from these two projects to Working Group 41 on Ocean Interventions for Climate Change Mitigation of the Joint Group of Experts on the Scientific Aspects of Marine Environmental Protection (GESAMP) and the interdisciplinary project ASsessment framework for MArine CO2 removal and SYnthesiS of current knowledge (ASMASYS).

She also explores PerCCSeptions of the cross-border transportation of CO2 for storage in Germany and Norway together with partners at the Norwegian Research Center (NORCE). In the past, she was a member of the German Research Foundation's Priority Programme 1689 Climate Engineering researching Trade-offs between Mitigation and Climate Engineering.

Christine’s other research interest are ways to promote changes toward more sustainable behavior. She researches the effects of nudging interventions on climate-friendly meal choices in field experiments. In the project Instruments to Promote Climate-Friendly Diets researchers from consumer psychology, environmental and behavioral economics work together with the university canteens in Schleswig-Holstein.

She is part of the coordination team of the Dialogue on the Economics of Climate Change which was initiated by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research to stimulate the exchange between climate economic research and societal stakeholders. In addition, she is a recurring expert for the  Young Economic Summit, YES!.

Since late 2020, she has been Deputy Director of the research center. Her background is in policy analysis and administration science (University of Konstanz and Rutgers University), and she holds a Doctorate in Quantitative Economics from Kiel University (2016). In May 2018 she was a visiting scholar at Harvard's Solar Geoengineering Research Program.

  1. Journal Article

    Social science research to inform solar geoengineering

    Science
    11/2021
    Joseph E. Aldy, Tyler Felgenhauer, William A. Pizer ...

    As the prospect of average global warming exceeding 1.5°C becomes increasingly likely, interest in supplementing mitigation and adaptation...

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