Demand dynamics
Behaviour, lifestyles and precariousness issues will be analysed at the national level with a focus on France and Europe, and with a regional breakdown at the global level, from developed countries to developing and fast-growing countries. This work will take into account different geographical scales, in order to integrate the importance of the deployment of urban and transport infrastructures, by focusing on relevant areas of analysis at the scale of agglomerations.

The analysis of the structural determinants of the demand for energy services, integrating behaviour, lifestyles and growth expectations, in particular energy access policies in developing countries, will be continued. It will be combined with the study of the influence, in global scenarios, of mechanisms of mimicry or differentiation of consumption patterns (electricity, residential, mobility, diets) in developing countries (e.g. Brazil and India). The impact of income inequalities will also be addressed.


Nadia Maïzi Lead Author of Chapter 5 “Demand, Services and Social Aspects of Mitigation” of the forthcoming IPCC AR6 report [CMA].

Elaboration of demand dynamics and study of behaviours in non-developed or developing countries at the geographical scales: ALGERIA within the framework of CREAD/CMA collaborations (Naima Chabouni doctoral thesis) [CMA].

Study of the determinants of demand and impact of behaviours in smart building ( doctoral thesis of Rabab Akkouche and Cindy Umana-Lopez (Cifre WIT)) [CMA].

Integration of acceptability as a moderator of technological choices in prospective exercises (Mathilde Tessier doctoral thesis) [CMA].

École Polytechnique Master 1 internship [CMA] : What lifestyles would be compatible with decarbonation and SDGs? Drawing inspiration from the doctoral thesis of Thomas Le Gallic (French perimeter) and their coupling with the input/output model that François Briens developed in his doctoral thesis. Scope envisaged: global level. Depending on the difficulty of finding data, the reflection will be carried out around a few “representative”countries. References: Ariane Millot, Rémy Doudard, Thomas Le Gallic, François Briens, Edi Assoumou, et al.. France 2072 : Lifestyles at the core of carbon neutrality challenges. Limiting Global Warming to Well Below 2 °C: Energy System Modelling and Policy Development, 2018. ⟨hal-01896027⟩

The aim here is to identify the determinants in the redistributive aspects of the energy transition (in France and in the main emerging countries) in relation to the current trend of increasing inequality. Within this framework, one of the study priorities will be the identification of households in a situation of fuel poverty and of the determinants of this poverty (other than income level) such as geographical location, quality of equipment, which could be conducted in various development contexts. The associated prospective analysis will be carried out over different time horizons and will allow us to consider the consequences of the combination of public policies over fuel poverty.


Measurements of SNBC2 ( IMACLIM-Fr) combining micro and macro simulation ( PhD thesis by E. Ravigné) [CIRED].

On-line simulator for evaluating the costs of carbon tax systems (J-C Hourcade/J Lefevre et al.) [CIRED].

The aim here is to better document the impact of infrastructure choices on the demand for services (mobility, residential, energy use, etc.) through their interactions with real estate markets, the spatial segmentation of housing (gentrification, forced displacement, urban planning) and the geographical structuring of production chains at different scales (large regions and urban areas). The challenge is to better represent the formation of commuting costs, i.e. the trade-off between travel costs and property prices, and, more broadly, to assess the impact of forms of land use on overall demand and, in particular, on the relative efficiency of alternative modes of transport. Possible competition between energy carriers, the potential impacts of energy efficiency and flexibility options will be considered. A study may be launched on the impact of policies for adapting urban over climate change and the objective of protecting biodiversity.


Assessment of infrastructure deployment policies compatible with the spatial integration of the energy production mix at different scales [CMA]:

  • Deployment and replicability of decarbonation solutions at the insular scale ( Norwegian and Italian islands): European project GIFT: Geographical Islands FlexibiliTy
  • Energy policy at the scale of the SUD PACA region and circular economy (Doctoral thesis by Carlos Andrade, ADEME/SUD Region, followed by Schneider Electric Aix en Provence)
  • Prospective tools for urban planners: development of a model coupling land allocation and deployment of urban forms with TIMES at the scale of Greater Bordeaux ( PhD thesis by Matthieu Denoux in collaboration with ANMA (urban planning agency))
  • Coupling of TIMES and ANTARES: Electric France scale (Yacine Alimou in collaboration with RTE)
  • Deployment of TIMES electricity at the European scale with a time disaggregation and a coupling with an EOD model: European project CLIM2POWER

NEDUM urban system model (coordinated by V. Viguié) [CIRED]:

  • Impact of urban planning and transport policies according to income categories: application to Cape Town (collaboration with the World Bank) and Paris.
  • Analysis of the impacts of property taxes and employment dynamics on urban sprawl and transport-related emissions (Paris)
  • Évaluation des inégalités dans l’accès aux services écosystémiques à Paris (projet IDEFESE)

Suite model RES-IRF (L.G. Giraudet) [CIRED]

IMACLIM-R world: Evaluation of infrastructure investment needs (transport) and their determinants in 2°C scenarios (ex-post analysis Vivien Fisch PhD thesis) [CIRED].

The integration of demand dynamics from the industrial sector (in terms of quantity and structure), taking into account technological developments in energy-intensive sectors, will be extended through a better description of the supply and value chains in these sectors. The aim is to provide a more relevant representation of the dynamics and inertia of industrial redeployment at the global scale (type of specialization, penalization of transport, etc.) by 2050. The effort initially made in France to take into account the emissions incorporated in imports throughout the industrial chain will be continued here. In order to develop a comprehensive vision, the competition between energy costs and emissions will be considered and the externalities related to international transport (marine bunker, air transport, etc.) will be taken into account when it becomes an element of the climate negotiations.

Tensions over resources
The economic impact of new technologies, new fossil energy resources and emission constraints on energy prices, oil and gas rents, investment direction and geopolitics is a central issue in the prospective of a low-carbon transition. Beyond the evaluation of the direct consequences on the countries whose economies are based on fossil rent, which will be the subject of specific studies, the aim will be to evaluate the regional repercussions, on the markets, at the human level, namely migration, and globally in terms of new geopolitical balances.

Lessons from the shale oil and gas case can be used as a canvas and a reminder that the horizon and dynamics of this type of occurrence are generally much shorter than the conventional time frame of prospective.  Attention will be paid to shale oil and gas while distinguishing between short, medium and long term impacts. Another challenge will be to address the impact on this competition of the hypothesis made on the modalities of carbon capture and storage (CCS).



Intégration des technologies CCS et H2 dans TIAM-FR (collaboration ETSAP) [CMA]

Follow-up of the H2 deployment project in the Manosque region (scientific advice) and integration into the TIMES SUD PACA model (Carlos Andrade PhD thesis) [CMA].

The prospects for the development of bioenergy and biological sequestration will be studied within the framework of trajectories aiming at carbon neutrality beyond 2050. One challenge is to ensure consistency between energy scenarios and land use constraints at the global scale and in large regions by integrating the feedback effects of constraints on land and food prices. The other challenge is the link between climate issues, food security, water stress and the protection of biodiversity.  Finally, emphasis will be placed on the link between the development of bioenergy and the capture of GHGs at their source, as well as on the assessment of incompressible emissions in the agricultural and forestry sector.


Coupled scenarios IMACLIM-R world/nexus land use model (NLU) (F. Leblanc) [CIRED]:

  • Study of the trade-off between bioenergy and afforestation/reforestation: coupling with a compact climate model (Oscar2.2) to better represent carbon storage linked to changes in land use.
  • Model development: biomass costs; international trade in liquid fuels

Integration of material recycling issues in IMACLIM-R France [CIRED] :

  • Beginning of PhD thesis A. Texeira on 01/2020 (co-financing Ademe)
The increased demand for materials processing industries in the early decades of a low-carbon strategy in the current context of changing global industrial geography is largely underestimated in the literature. It may alter the view of the time profile of the low-carbon transition and the industrial strategies supporting this transition. A study of the mechanisms at stake will have impacts on the evaluation of the real potential of the circular economy (on the scale of France and Brazil), on the evaluation of the emissions incorporated via imports. It will be relevant to explore the competition between additional energy dedicated to recycling or to the extraction of voltage resources. Work on the rare metals issue will be extended to include an LCA approach.

Initiation and management of transitions
We propose to explore both the technological solutions and the financial levers that will enable us to launch and drive the decarbonation process. The theoretical challenge is a better understanding of the transition mechanisms that need to be articulated on several time scales to trigger and then carry out such a transition.

The conditions for the penetration of low-carbon alternatives will continue to be analyzed here. The trajectories of the energy system as a whole will be explored. These elements of prospective analysis will be supported by a reflection based on an analogy with the physics of phase transitions in order to evaluate the actual state of the energy systems transition and the conditions of their bifurcation towards a low-carbon system.

They will be extended by an analysis of the micro-economic conditions of this technological deployment (tariff principles, design of capacity markets, deletion mechanisms, support for R&D). Emphasis will be placed on the risks of contradictory effects if these instruments are used jointly and on the conditions to be created to maximize their synergy. One of the issues at stake is multi-vector modeling integrating the feedbacks of supply prices on the level of demand by vector and taking into account the financing constraints weighing on each of the actors involved (state, region, city). This will fuel a critical discussion on the chronograms of system transformation (technological inertia, endogenous learning gains and costs of support policies). A specific focus will be put on the quantitative characterization of the existing uncertainty on the evolution of the cost of low carbon options (wind, photovoltaic, flexibility technologies) and a better understanding of the determinants of the evolution of real costs in Europe and in developing countries.

The issue of the power system and its convergences with other vectors will be addressed in a comprehensive manner to assess its legitimacy as a central topic of debate on future options. Thus, the results acquired on the conditions of deployment of intermittent renewable energies will be extended to assess the development scenarios of the infrastructures (transmission and distribution) associated with the power system according to the decentralized vs. centralized mode of generation. Particular attention will be paid to the following points: the voluntarist scenarios of electrification through uses (Electric Vehicle, Heat Pump…), the synergies between gas and electricity vectors, an explanation of the impacts of digitalization (decarbonation potential taking into account the energy consumed by the digital system, its leverage effect, its life cycle analysis including the energy materiality, and the search for the energy cost/benefit balance imposed by the second principle of thermodynamics…), the enhancement of existing infrastructures. The issues of social acceptability raised by these solutions will be integrated.


Analogy with phase transition: reflection on the notion of transition and the conditions favourable to the transition to a decarbonised “universe” (Ariane Millot’s PhD thesis).
Ongoing writing of several articles [CMA].

Transition Funding (J-C Hourcade Coord) [CIRED]:

  • Évaluation de l’articulation garanties publiques/prix du carbone afin de baisser le risque d’investissement dans les projets bas carbone
  • Identification et quantification des incertitudes sur les technologies bas carbone (projet Secraet)

Évaluation des NDCs et élargissement du réseau des IMACLIM-nationaux (coord. F. Ghersi/J.Lefevre) [CIRED] :

  • Projet DDPP-LAC : finalisation IMACLIM-Argentine (collaboration avec la fondation Bariloche) (G. le Treut)
  • Projet Banque mondiale (Brésil) : évaluation de la mise en œuvre du prix du carbone (IMACLIM-Br) (G.le Treut)
  • Extension réseau IMACLIM à l’Afrique (Nigéria, Sénégal, Tunisie…) (F. Ghersi et al.)
  • Article collectif autour des enjeux macroéconomiques dans les BRICS en vue de l’AR6 (IPCC, chap 4 coord F.Lecocq) + prochain workshop à Pékin (coord. F. Ghersi)
  • Collaborations avec NIES (Japon): réseau de coopération autour du modèle intégré AIM (Japon-Asie)

France : simulateur en ligne d’évaluation des coûts de dispositifs de fiscalité carbone (J-C Hourcade/J Lefevre) [CIRED]

Analyse de la décarbonisation du secteur électrique français (Thèse Behrang Shirizadeh) [CIRED]

The introduction of investment risk in forward-looking scenarios will first test de-risking mechanisms for low-carbon investments in an uncertain context determined by multiple variables (economic, industrial, social and political). These mechanisms should make it possible, on the one hand, to increase the number of economically viable options for a given carbon price and, on the other hand, to mobilize financial players managing private savings, bond markets and the banking system.

The range of public policy tools available for triggering the transition (carbon taxation, permit markets, property taxation, energy tariffs, infrastructure policies, technical standards) could then be broadened to include public guarantees, the conventional setting of a value for avoided carbon and the creation of long-term low-carbon assets to redirect savings that are currently reluctant to invest productively. We will then assess the macroeconomic effects on employment, income distribution, social accounts, industrial competitiveness and debt reduction of schemes incorporating the financial leverage effect and, in the European framework, a monetary easing policy based on the carbon value. As the ultimate impact depends on the ability of the businesses concerned to engage, this evaluation will include (on the basis of studies on the energy efficiency of buildings and on infrastructure investments in developing countries) the support by innovative business models of industrial sectors and the dissemination of knowledge. One of the challenges is to couple the reflection on innovative financing systems with that of a greater supply of “low carbon” projects, including for example through mechanisms for aggregating loans of the same amount.

This research axis will integrate the need to best adapt technological choices to local conditions as well as policy incentives and support mechanisms to the macro-economic and budgetary constraints of countries.

International influences
The Chair will integrate in its program the consequences of the Paris Agreement (2015) which replaced the ”Kyoto paradigm” of sharing an emissions budget with a ”bottom-up” approach where countries determined their national contributions to the common effort (NDCs). It will deploy its efforts in preparation for the 6th IPCC report (AR6): the production of global scenarios to test various climate governance hypotheses and analyses by region or country, in collaboration with local partners to accompany the reflection on NDCs and on the gains to be expected from various regional and international aid and cooperation schemes.

The objective of this research operation is to analyze :

  • The technical and economic conditions of the different temperature stabilization objectives, in particular the 2°C objective and the emission profiles leading to transient overshoot or higher stabilization levels;
  • The combinations of instruments (taxes, carbon markets, infrastructure policies, sectoral agreements, carbon finance, macroeconomic policies) allowing to trigger “low carbon” investment choices while smoothing transition costs;
  • The potential of an agreement on a “social cost of carbon” and the creation of carbon assets likely to circumvent these difficulties in the face of the impasses of a “burden sharing” type logic, which prevailed after Kyoto, to resolve climate/development issues.


The conduct of this operation was strongly influenced by the production of materials for the COP21 held in Paris at the end of 2015. Here the Chair strengthened its integration into international networks of expertise/decision-making interfaces (EMF, IAMC). It will continue its practice of organizing “side events” at the Conferences of the Parties and will strengthen its contributions to the LCS-RNet network, which brings together the G8 countries and the major emerging countries.

The role of the global scenarios for meeting temperature stabilization targets (+2°C, 1.5°C) and/or carbon neutrality is first to highlight the implications of various emission reduction schedules for the global energy mix by integrating different levels of ‘overshoot’ and/or use of various forms of CCS. This will allow the assessment of the contributions of NDCs to global targets and the associated fictitious carbon price trajectories with their redistributive implications across countries and regions. On this basis, the impact of various economic and financial instruments of international cooperation can be tested: compensatory transfers between countries, combinations of national policies (carbon taxes, infrastructure policies) and international policies (carbon markets, sectoral agreements, carbon finance); the ‘Clubs’ hypothesis for public guarantees allowing the creation of carbon assets; the role of macroeconomic parameters (monetary policies, exchange rates) and oil prices; assessment of the compliance of the mechanisms with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities; contribution of the different emission reduction trajectories to the Sustainable Development Goals adopted by the international community (poverty reduction, access to basic services, migration consequences, etc.).

The regional and international scenarios concern: the world, Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, Europe, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Brazil, China, India; France and, more locally, Reunion Island, the PACA and Normandy regions in France.


Deployment of regional and international scenarios [CMA] :

  • Countries: France, Algeria, Africa
  • Islands: islands in Norway and Italy, Mauritius and Rodrigues
  • Region: SUD PACA, Greater Bordeaux

Project H2020 Navigate: development of a new generation of scenarios for assessing climate policies on a global scale (coord. C. Guivarch) [CIRED]:

  • Development of tools for the analysis of a set of scenarios
  • Analyse et développement de la représentation des changements structurels dans les IAMs
  • Development of low energy demand and lifestyle change scenarios
  • Work on the integration of climate change damage into scenarios

Organization of the 4th edition of the International Summer School on Environmental Economic Modeling at CIRED (6-10 July, theme: A just transition to net zero emissions societies)

Organization of the 2nd International Summer School on “Prospective Modeling and Energy Transition” at CMA on the theme: ” Vulnerabilities of territories, including: specific geographical features, resource scarcity, technical systems requirements, geopolitical issues, and human and social factors ” (date to be determined in light of the evolution of the current international health crisis)

About our Research Axis :

The research operations that we undertake are distributed in the continuation of the axes previously investigated. Their content has been updated to reformulate old questions and to integrate new questions according to the changing economic context and the findings derived from previous work. All of them contribute to providing the scientific basis for public deliberation on the mutations implied by the challenges of sustainable development, and for “business models” supporting a shift towards a low-carbon society in an open economy. Each of the research operations is part of the “portfolio of skills” of the Chair’s teams and their relative weight may vary according to the breakthroughs made, the difficulties encountered, the international scientific debates and the partners’ requests. Increased attention will be paid to three cross-cutting dimensions:

  • The spatial dimension to shed light on ‘multi-scale’ problems of any kind: (i) constraints to the transformation of energy systems towards increasingly diffuse and renewable modes; or (ii) interactions and links between energy transport infrastructures, urban forms, land use planning and the deployment of low-carbon mobilities carrying increasingly confined energy services.

  • The influence of controversies, uncertainties and various forms of risk on the attitudes and decisions of private and public actors, as elements that block the initiation of transitions and the integration of various forms of risk and uncertainty into the public policy agenda.

  • The various forms of inequality (income, access to energy services, access to information and basic infrastructure, access to financing) both within and between countries, as a determinant of ongoing dynamics and conditions for inclusive growth.