Simon Sharpe is a Policy Associate at the UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP).
Simon is Deputy Director at the UK Government’s Cabinet Office COP26 Unit, where he leads work on international campaigns to accelerate low carbon transitions. He previously led a team responsible for international climate change strategy at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy; led the work on energy and clean growth in the government’s Industrial Strategy; and served as head of private office to the Minister of State for Energy and Climate Change, and later to the Minister of State for Climate Change and Industry.
Simon worked at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office for ten years, serving in China and India, and leading on climate change strategy in the run-up to the Paris negotiations in 2015. In this role he created and led a major international project to re-shape the way governments assess the risks of climate change, working with leading experts in the US, China and India.
Simon is a Research Fellow at the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose at UCL, a Policy Fellow of the Centre for Science and Policy at Cambridge University, a member of the UCL Policy Commission on the Communication of Climate Science, and a member of the advisory board of the Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity. He has a background in physics and finance, and an interest in new economic thinking.
- Academic working papers
- Sharpe, S., Mercure, J-F., Vinuales, J., Ives, M., Grubb, M., Pollitt, H., Knobloch, F. and Nijsse, F.J.M.M. (2021). Deciding how to decide: Risk-opportunity analysis as a generalisation of cost-benefit analysis. UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, Working Paper Series (IIPP WP 2021/03). Available at: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/bartlett/public-purpose/wp2021-03
- Sharpe, S. and Lenton, T. (2020). Upward-scaling tipping cascades to meet climate goals: Plausible grounds for hope. UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, Working Paper Series (IIPP WP 2020-07). Available at: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/bartlett/public-purpose/wp2020-07
- The economics of change: policy and appraisal for missions, market shaping and public purpose Kattel, Mazzucato, Ryan-Collins & Sharpe (2018)
- Grubb, M. et al., (2021): The New Economics of Innovation and Transition: Evaluating Opportunities and Risks
- Victor, D.G., Geels, F.W. and Sharpe, S. (2019). Accelerating the Low Carbon Transition: The Case for Stronger, More Targeted and Coordinated International Action
- Climate Change: A Risk Assessment, Centre for Science and Policy, University of Cambridge (2015)
- Lenton, T. et al., (2022): Operationalising positive tipping points towards global sustainability
- Mercure, J-F. et al., (2021): Risk-opportunity analysis for transformative policy design and appraisal
- Sharpe, S. and Lenton, T. (2021): Upward-scaling tipping cascades to meet climate goals: plausible grounds for hope, Climate Policy, DOI: 10.1080/14693062.2020.1870097
- Sharpe, S.: Telling the boiling frog what he needs to know: why climate change risks should be plotted as probability over time, Geosci. Commun., 2, 95–100, https://doi.org/10.5194/gc-2-95-2019, 2019.