The Climate State: Global warming, fiscal crisis and the future of the welfare state

Location: Theatre 4, Alan Gilbert Building, Grattan St, University of Melbourne.

Non-climate-related fiscal challenges already confront many welfare states with difficult choices. To these pressures, one must add those generated by global warming. In this seminar, Peter Christoff will argue that this second group of challenges is inadequately recognized. Without such recognition and a precautionary response, the two sets of compounding pressures may significantly reorder the capacities and priorities of the welfare state. As a consequence a new state form – the climate state – may emerge.


Peter Christoff is an Associate Professor in the School of Geography at the University of Melbourne. Part of the research into this paper, on climate finance and its associated prospects and problems, was undertaken during a recent Visiting Fellowship at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.

This is part of the Climate Conversations seminar series, co-hosted by MSSI and the Australian-German Climate & Energy College.