Unique student-run conference will take place from March 1st to 3rd, convening students from around the globe.

From March 1 through March 3, the Inter-Policy School Summit (IPSS), a unique student-run public policy conference, will be convening students from around the globe to tackle the timely and interrelated issues of climate change and national security, a subject made all the more urgent with the recent publication of the National Climate Assessment on Black Friday 2018, which identified climate change’s risks to national defense, the economy, public health, and more.

“The National Climate Assessment, which was informed in part by research by Amir Jina, Assistant Professor here at Harris Public Policy, paints a bleak picture of a world that does not do enough to combat climate change,” Sid Ramakrishna, Co-Executive Director of IPSS, said. “The lack of progress being made in mitigating climate change will threaten national security in several different ways over our lifetimes. We are looking for Summit attendees who take this critical issue seriously and can present viable ways to mitigate climate risks.”

This year, IPSS will be partnering with the Aspen Institute’s Energy and Environment Program. Participants will create metrics to assess climate risks based on existing data and identify institutions that can or should play a role. 

“The Aspen Institute is very excited to partner with the Inter-Policy School Summit and the Harris School of Public Policy to find solutions to one of the most important issues of our time, climate change and its effects on national security,” said Greg Gershuny, interim director of the Aspen Institute’s Energy and Environment Program.

Now in its third year, the Inter-Policy School Summit (IPSS) was developed to revolutionize the landscape of policy conferences by uniting great minds – all graduate students in public policy – in a collaborative environment to design real solutions for a carefully chosen global challenge. 

“Our job at Harris is to equip students with the tools needed to rigorously analyze policy challenges and propose solutions,” said Jeremy Edwards, senior associate dean for academic and student affairs at Harris Public Policy. “Conferences like the Inter-Policy School Summit give promising students from around the world the opportunity to take what they’ve learned in the classroom and apply it to a timely policy challenge. The IPSS is a tremendous example of student-led impact on real policy issues.”

Students will break off into teams to analyze specific questions relating to climate change and national security, all while receiving guidance from subject matter experts. On the final day, students will present their recommendations to the Aspen Institute, which will use them to form as new frameworks in its recommendations to policymakers. The recommendations will then be presented at a future event held by the Aspen Institute.

Last year’s topic centered around the issues of cybersecurity and trade. Nicholas Percoco, the Chief Security Officer at Uptake, delivered the keynote address. With hackers finding new and innovative ways to disrupt and profit off of an increasingly automated trade sphere, 30 students from sixteen different universities in five different countries (including the US, France, Brazil, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom) paired up with fellows from New America, the think tank and civic enterprise, to analyze, debate, and propose their own solutions.

Apply to the the Inter-Policy School Summit.