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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - IRI THESys

Dr. Stefan Schäfer

Science, Technology and Society  


  • Science and Technology Studies
  • Political Theory
  • Sustainability and democracy   


“My work is motivated by the central role that science and technology occupy in the politics of sustainability, and the implications this has for democratic governance. Forming a more complete understanding of what is at stake at the intersection of science, technology, democracy and sustainability requires interdisciplinary thinking and collaboration, for which IRI THESys provides an ideal setting.” Stefan Schäfer

Dr. Stefan Schäfer is a scientific project leader at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies in Potsdam (IASS Potsdam), where he leads the research group on Climate Engineering in Science, Society and Politics. He is also a Visiting Fellow in the Program on Science, Technology and Society at Harvard University and an Associate Fellow of the Institute for Science, Innovation and Society at the University of Oxford, where he was an Oxford Martin Visiting Fellow in 2017.

Stefan was a guest researcher at the Social Science Research Center Berlin (Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung, WZB) from 2009-2012 and a fellow in the Robert Bosch Foundation’s Global Governance Futures program in 2014-15. He has spent research stays at University College London (2013) and Harvard University (2015 and 2016), and holds a doctorate in political science from Freie Universität Berlin.

Since May 2018, Stefan is a member of IRI THESys.

Selected Publications

Horton, J. B., J. L. Reynolds, H. J. Buck, D. Callies, S. Schäfer, D. Keith and S. Rayner. 2018 forth-coming. Solar Geoengineering and Democracy. Accepted for publication in Global Environmental Politics., 25, 1-41. doi: 10.1080/23308249.2016.1209160. 

Boettcher, M. and S. Schäfer. 2017. Reflecting upon 10 years of Geoengineering Research: Introduc-tion to the Crutzen +10 Special Issue. Earth’s Future, DOI: 10.1002/2016EF000521.

Schäfer, S., H. Stelzer, W. Born, S. Low, M. Lawrence, A. Aaheim, P. Adriázola, G. Betz, O. Boucher, A. Carius, P. Devine-Right, A.T. Gullberg, S. Haszeldine, J. Haywood, K. Houghton, R. Ibarrola, P. Irvine, J.-E. Kristjansson, T. Lenton, J.A. Link, A. Maas, L. Meyer, H. Muri, A. Oschlies, A. Proelß, T. Rayner, W. Rickels, L. Ruthner, J. Scheffran, H. Schmidt, M. Schulz, V. Scott, S. Shackley, D. Tänzler, M. Watson, N. Vaughan. 2015. The European Transdisciplinary Assessment of Climate Engi-neering (EuTRACE): Removing Greenhouse Gases from the Atmosphere and Reflecting Sunlight away from Earth. Funded by the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme under Grant Agreement 306993.

Schäfer, S. and S. Low. 2014. Asilomar Moments: Formative Framings in Recombinant DNA and So-lar Climate Engineering Research. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Socie-ty A 372, 2031.

Zürn, M. and S. Schäfer. 2013. The Paradox of Climate Engineering. Global Policy 4, 3, pp. 266-277.

Full list of publications