Informal Thematic Debate
Climate Change as a Global Challenge

John P. Holdren

John P. Holdren is Teresa and John Heinz Professor of Environmental Policy and Director of the Program on Science, Technology, and Public Policy at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, as well as President and Director of the Woods Hole Research Center. He is also Professor of Environmental Science and Policy in Harvard’s Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences and the immediate past President and current Chair of the Board of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (the largest general science society in the world). His work has focused on causes and consequences of global environmental change, sustainable development, energy technology and policy, nuclear arms control and nonproliferation, and science and technology policy.

Dr. Holdren is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Council on Foreign Relations. From 1993 through 2004 he served as Chair of the Committee on International Security and Arms Control of the National Academy of Sciences, and from 1994 to 2001 he was a member of President Clinton's Committee of Advisors on Science and Technology. (In the latter capacity, he led five major studies for the White House on US energy research and development strategy, nuclear nonproliferation, and international cooperation on energy.) Since 2002 he has been Co-Chair of the independent, bipartisan National Commission on Energy Policy, and from 2004 to the present he has served as a coordinating lead author of the Scientific Expert Group on Climate Change and Sustainable Development, reporting to the Department of Economic and Social Affairs and the Commission on Sustainable Development of the United Nations..

He has been the recipient of a MacArthur Foundation Prize Fellowship (1981-6), the Volvo International Environment Prize (1993), the Kaul Foundation Award for Scientific Excellence (1999), the Tyler Environment Prize (2000), and the John Heinz Prize in Public Policy (2001), among other awards. In 1995 he gave the acceptance speech for the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs (where he served as Chair of the Executive Committee from 1987 to 1997).