Transformational risk management to tackle climate Loss and Damage

Loss and Damage (L&D) has gained traction since it became apparent that climate change would lead to impacts that cannot, or will not, be tackled by mitigation or adaptation. While current research mainly focuses on L&D in the Global South, our objective is to provide policy-relevant scientific insights from the perspective of Austria.


The recent special report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on global warming of 1.5°C shows that the world is on its way to breaching the 1.5°C limit by around 2040. The report for the first time also presents insight into hard and soft limits to adaptation, some of which would be reached at 1.5°C.

Limits to adaptation and approaches for dealing with risk “beyond adaptation” has been the focus of the international climate policy debate on L&D. This debate is currently still broad and diffuse, while research concepts, methods, and tools for providing direction for policy remain vague and contested. Moreover, current research mainly focuses on L&D in the Global South.


Stocktake of the international and national political discourse on L&D; and of L&D channels that directly and/or indirectly affect Austria.

Review existing concepts and methods and developing novel risk metrics to inform policy on L&D.

Define and assess the role of transformational Climate Risk Management (CRM) in contrast to incremental risk management, to tackle L&D in Austria and beyond.

Consult Austrian stakeholders to identify concerns regarding intolerable L&D beyond adaptation; and to define and exemplify transformational CRM.

Evaluate the applicability of lessons learned from Austrian and additional international case studies to inform international climate L&D research and policy debate more broadly.


Thomas Schinko
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
T +43(0) 2236 807 467


This research project is supported by the Austrian Climate and Energy Fund and is carried out as part of the ‚Austrian Climate Research Program‘.
November 2019 – October 2021


Downloads 2020
TransLoss Flyer (English Version)