Global Governance Institute


Policy for Transformations: The Role of the State in Just Green Transformations

20 June 2018, 6:15 pm–7:45 pm

Green Transformations

Event Information

Open to



Archaeology G6 LT, 31-34 Gordon Square, London WC1H 0PY

There is now broad consensus that a transformation of the current fossil-fuel based economy to an inclusive, resource-efficient and low-carbon economy is urgently required. While signs of movement in that direction are apparent, as evidenced in a booming green finance sector, so far efforts to promote 'green growth' have fallen far short of what is required. Most experts agree that to effectively and equitably deal with climate change responses will have to go deeper and faster than market mechanisms alone will allow. Long-term environmental and social sustainability is going to require a radical overhaul of neoliberal capitalism as currently practiced. In the short-term, however, preparations for a just green transformation must begin from within the prevailing capitalist context. 

One of the key social forces capable of accelerating such a transformation remains the state. By credibly committing to a just low-carbon society at the national and international level, the state can rally other social forces: social movements, legal advocates, (fractions of) capital and finance, to the cause. China's 2015 Environmental Protection Law and the recent 2017 French Corporate Duty of Vigilance Law provide an indication of this direction of travel. 

However, such initiatives are the exception, with state action often disappointing in practice and subject to powerful countervailing forces. In turn, while the rewards of a green economy are potentially great, policy architects must also grapple with such short-term challenges as human capacity development and reskilling a large workforce for green jobs. This public panel event will bring together leading thinkers to advance debate on the catalytic and regulatory function of the state in this ambitious endeavour.

This event is free and open to all but to avoid disappointment please register at: EVENTBRITE: Policy for Transformations: The Role of the State in Just Green Transformations

Panel Members: 

  • Jos Delbeke, former Director-General of the European Commission's DG Climate Action (2010-March 2018), Senior Adviser for Relations with the European University Institute, European Political Strategy Centre, European Commission (as of March 2018) 
  • Michael Grubb, Professor of Energy and Climate Change, UCL Institute of Sustainable Resources and UCL Energy Institute 
  • Mariana Mazzucato, Professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value, Director of the UCL Institute for Innovation & Public Purpose (IIPP) 
  • Sharon Turner, Consultant Director for the Governance Programme at the European Climate Foundation (ECF) 

Chair: Tom Pegram, Deputy Director of the UCL Global Governance Institute 

This panel discussion is organised by the UCL Global Governance and Ethics Society in collaboration with the UCL Global Governance Institute.