The UN Climate Change Negotiations Practicum at Duke, now in its sixth year, is an independent study focusing on international climate change negotiations and policies under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). This course provides students with a comprehensive understanding of the international climate change issue, regulatory policies, negotiation processes and political dynamics of the UNFCCC through independent work, class discussions and guest lectures.

Through a semester-long guided study, students will get an in-depth look at the UNFCCC and the key topics surrounding the negotiations of a new climate treaty to be held in Paris in December, 2015. Depending on accreditation and funding, students may get the opportunity to support an NGO and/or country delegation and attend a session of the 2015 negotiations. This unique opportunity provides graduate students with a hands-on experience in a UN negotiation, deep climate change policy expertise, and valuable networking connections that have often led to internship and job opportunities.

In the past five years, practicum participants have attended COP20 in Lima, Peru; COP19 in Warsaw, Poland; COP18 in Doha, Qatar; COP17 in Durban, South Africa; and COP16 in Cancún, Mexico. Student teams have worked with countries, such as Palau, Bangladesh, Mexico, and the Philippines, and NGOs, such as Islands First, International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED).

Participation in this year’s Practicum is open to graduate students at Duke University. The faculty sponsors for the course are Professor Jonathan Wiener and Professor Billy Pizer, and course organizers are Emily Pechar (PhD student) and Suki Han (MEM Candidate ’16). Applications will open in early August for enrollment in the fall 2015 semester.

For questions, please contact Emily Pechar at emily.pechar@duke.edu.


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