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Adrian Rinscheid joins cluster of excellence to study link between climate policy and inequality

Dr. Adrian Rinscheid, who is currently an International Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of St. Gallen’s Institute for Economy and the Environment, was invited to join the Cluster of Excellence “The Politics of Inequality” at the University of Konstanz (Germany) for a research stay from October 2021 to March 2022. In the context of his project ‘The politics of overcoming carbon lock-in’, which focuses on decarbonization of the automotive industry, Rinscheid will conduct a study on perceptions of inequality attributed to climate policy. Part of the study’s motivation stems from a recent survey conducted at IWÖ-HSG, according to which less than a third of Swiss voters are aware that most of the revenue from the country’s CO2 tax is redistributed to Swiss households. “Many citizens are worried about climate policy being restrictive and leading to higher socio-economic inequality, whereas these policies are in fact designed to prevent the inequalities resulting from uncontrolled climate change”, says Adrian Rinscheid, noting that this is particularly the case when factoring in the high projected cost of delayed climate action. At the University of Konstanz, he will conduct surveys with German citizens to investigate to what extent climate policies are perceived to reinforce socio-economic inequalities, and how providing objective information about the implications of climate policies may shift voter perceptions.

Author: Zsuzsa Borsa

Date: 12. October 2021