Summer School in Science and Policy 2013


The challenges facing the 21st century are simultaneously socially, politically, and scientifically complex. At the intersection between science and society, the burgeoning interdisciplinary field of sustainable development has the potential to bridge these gaps, with current PhD students at Alliance Program institutions the next generation of researchers leading the research agenda.

The Alliance Summer School in Science and Policy will be held in Paris (location to be confirmed). The sessions will be held on the following days: from Tuesday the 18th of June to Wednesday the 26th of June 2013. The Alliance Program’s Science and Policy Summer School will facilitate this dialogue during a week-long workshop to be held at Sciences Po in Paris or at Columbia University, building upon the successes of the first Summer School held in Paris last June. World-class professors and industry experts will be invited to lecture on global problems facing the scientific and policy communities and to engage students in discussion. About 30 graduate students from Columbia University, Sciences Po, École Polytechnique and Université Paris-I are expected to participate.

Dates: Starts on June the 18th in the afternoon, continues every week day until June the 26th from 9.30am – 5.30pm.

Location: Sciences Po, 13 rue de l’Université, 75007 Paris, France

Confirmed Guest Speakers

  • Laurence TubianaFounder of the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI), Professor at Sciences Po and Columbia University
  • Jeffrey Sachs, Director of The Earth Institute, Columbia University
  • Claude Henry, Economist and Physicist, Professor at Sciences Po and Columbia University
  • John Mutter, Professor in the departments of Earth and Environmental Sciences and of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University
  • Scott Barrett, Vice Dean, School of International and Public Affairs; Lenfest-Earth Institute Professor of Natural Resource Economics
  • Wolfram Schlenker, Associate Professor in the departments of Economics and International and Public Affairs at Columbia University
  • Peter Haas, Professor of Political Science at the University of Massachusetts Amherst
  • David Vogel, Soloman P. Lee Distinguished Professor in Business Ethics, in the Political Science Department and at the Haas School of Business, at the University of California Berkeley
  • Roland Scholz, Professor of Environmental Sciences, Natural and Social Science Interface at ETH Zurich
  • Pierre-Henry Gouyon,  Professor at the Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle de Paris and at Sciences Po
  • Gérard Lasfargues, Deputy director general for scientific affairs of ANSES (French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety)

Discussion topics

  • Bringing science to policy-makers and policy issues to scientists
  • The challenges of interdisciplinary research
  • Innovation and the regulating of science
  • Regulating science, Intellectual Property and Innovation
  • The debate of scientific uncertainties
  • The role of technocrats in democracies


Guest Speakers will deliver a short presentation of their understanding of relevant issues, after which they will engage in discussion in the realm of linking science and policy.

During the program, students will develop research topics and divide into working groups. Each group will be assigned with the task of identifying research questions related to how science and policy interconnect within the realm of a chosen topic. The groups will review existing institutional structures and challenges, identify relevant needs for scientists and policy makers, and think of several research designs and methodologies. Over the course of the week, each student group will work together to produce a research proposal outline, which can be the foundation for future work and collaboration. The last day of the school will be devoted to each group presenting their work and discussing it with the other participants.

How to apply

Please, fill in the application form available here before Friday, May the 17th midnight EST.

Note: Funding for travel and accommodation costs is not available. Each student is financially responsible for her/his participation. There is no application fee. However a participation fee might be asked in order to cover expenses for the breakfasts and lunches provided throughout the week; this fee will not be higher than 60 EUR ($80).

If you need more information, please contact [email protected].


The event is supported by the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI).