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Department of Economics


Department of Economics



Swiss National Funds finances the Sinergia project: Climate Change Extremes and Adaptation Strategies considering Uncertainty and Federalism (CCAdapt). Leading house of this prestigious project is the Department of Economics (University of Bern), partners are the University of Basel as well as the Ecole Polytechnioue de Lausanne (EPFL).

The present project aims for developing tools and methods that facilitate a more detailed characterization of climate change adaptation from an economic and policy analysis perspective. These tools and methods are then applied to the specific case of adaptation to a changed probability and magnitude of flood events in Switzerland. Obviously this re-quires an interdisciplinary approach, which integrates environmental economics, hydrology, meteorology, and political sciences. In four research groups, we develop a theoretical basis of adaptation that takes into account the three aforementioned characteristics, which are then used in Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) models of Switzerland for evaluating feasible adaptation strategies. Both theory development and application will be based on a prediction of climate impacts on hydrological extremes in Switzerland and take into account political barriers to adaptation due to strategic interaction between different levels of Switzerland’s federalist structure. Overall we expect to deliver a refined theory of adaptation, improved tools for quantification of adaptation strategies and a better understanding of efficiency-equity tradeoffs as well as political barriers to adaptation.

For further information please contact gunter.stephan@vwi.unibe.ch

Newsletter 2014 Department of Economics

Next research seminar
15th September 2014     John MOORE, London School of Economics

Next Brown Bag seminar
24th September 2014     Prof. Antoine Martin (NY Fed)

Selected recent publications

Gunter Stephan and Georg Müller-Fürstenberger. 2014. Global Warming, Technological Change and Trade in Carbon Energy: Challenge or Threat? Environmental and Resource Economics, DOI: 10.1007/s10640-014-9818-4.

Feess, E, Gerfin, M. and Mühlheusser, G. (forthcoming) "Contracts as rent seeking devices: Evidence from German soccer", Economic Inquiry.

Bütikofer, A. and M. Gerfin (forthcoming), “The economies of scale of living together and how they are shared – estimates based on a collective household model”, Review of the Economics of the Household.

Oliver Schenker (ZEW Mannheim), Gunter Stephan (2014): "Give and Take: How the Funding of Adaptation to Climate Change Can Improve the Donor’s Terms-of-Trade". to appear in Ecological Economics.

Gu, Chao,  Fabrizio Mattesini, Cyril Monnet and Randall Wright. 2013. Endogenous Credit Cycles, Journal of Political Economy, vol. 121(5):940-965.

Becker, Sascha O., Peter H. Egger, and Maximilian von Ehrlich. 2013. “Absorptive Capacity and the Growth and Investment Effects of Regional Transfers: A Regression Discontinuity Design with Heterogeneous Treatment Effects” American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 5 (4):29-77.


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