Getting models and modellers to inform deep decarbonization strategies
An increasing number of countries issue Deep Decarbonization Strategies (DDS). While DDS contents are well analysed, the processes by which they are developed attract less attention. This paper investigates what numerical model(s) are used in these processes, how they are used, and how models, modellers and stakeholders jointly contribute to the production of DDS. It draws lessons from an in-depth analysis of the second French national low-carbon strategy, complemented with insights from the US, Swedish and Brazilian DDS production processes. While configurations differ, DDS processes typically rely on multiple, sometimes overlapping models and involve a broad range of stakeholders. Articulating models together, and through stakeholder consultations, produces both numbers and collectives that share visions of the future – and both are equally important. Setting up and coordinating such assemblages of models and stakeholders requires effort, time, anticipation and resources. The cases presented here highlight the importance of technical, institutional and relational legacies (e.g. prior experience of joint work, hybrid communities), and of political support. We conclude on the importance for policymakers to account for these dimensions when setting up DDS processes and layout avenues for further research.