The 26th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, known as COP26, will take place in Glasgow, Scotland, between 1 and 12 November 2021.

The summit will be hosted jointly by the United Kingdom and Italy. It will be the fifth United Nations climate change summit to take place since the landmark Paris Agreement emerged at the end of COP21 on 12 December 2015.

COP26 will be a significant milestone for the international response to climate change. The Grantham Research Institute is engaged in a range of activities ahead of COP26, including academic research, policy analysis and events. This page provides details of these activities and background information about COP26.

Pre-COP26 events

15 years on from the Stern Review: economics of climate change, innovation, growth26 October 2021
To mark the 15th anniversary of the publication of the landmark The Economics of Climate Change: The Stern Review, Nicholas Stern will review progress and look forward to the prospects of success at COP26 and beyond. 

Just Zero – a Virtual Conference on Financing the Just Transition25-26 October 2021
The aim of the Just Zero conference is to bring together some of the key activities that are underway to mobilise the financial sector in support of a just transition and build a momentum for change heading into the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow.

Events during COP26

Experts Panel: Scaling-up Paris Agreement Implementation through Climate Legislation
5 November 2021, 10:15 am – 11:25 am, University of Glasgow
This expert panel session will address the following questions:

  • How to translate the Paris Agreement into innovative sectoral and cross-sectoral climate legislation that builds on good practices and lessons learned?
  • What has been learned from national experiences with legal and regulatory instruments incentivizing a low carbon and climate resilient transition and how can these be taken into account in emerging markets?
  • What mechanisms can be used to strengthen accountability for implementation of climate change legislation and policies?

This panel session is taking place during the Climate Law & Governance Day 2021, organised by the Climate Law and Governance Initiative (CLGI), at COP26.
For further details and registration information visit the event web page

Experts Panel: Rising Temperatures, Expanding Human Rights and the Obligations of States and Private Actors for Global Climate Justice
5 November 2021, 10:15 am – 11:25 am, University of Glasgow

This panel session is taking place during the Climate Law & Governance Day 2021, organised by the Climate Law and Governance Initiative (CLGI), at COP26.
For further details and registration information visit the event web page

Climate Change Legislation, Litigation and the Rule of Law 6 November 2021, 12:00 pm – 6:30 pm
This half day event, taking place during COP26 in Glasgow, features leading experts in climate litigation and legislation. They will be addressing issues related to climate change legislation, litigation and the rule of law.

From pledges to action: Governance for the effective implementation of the Paris agreement – UNFCCC side event
10 November 2021, 6:30 pm – 7:45 pm
Blue zone, Lomond Auditorium and on-line

The event features new research on the credibility of the NDCs and how national institutions should be structured to deliver on targets and policies. Institutions enable strategy, coordination, and consensus building. Speakers at event will also examine eight country cases to illuminate what works and where.

Speakers: Prof. Navroz K. Dubash, CPR; Dr. Alina Averchenkova, GRI, LSE; a panel discussion with legislators, policy makers and civil society members from developing and developed countries.

Further details on this event to follow.

New York Times Climate Hub – Climate Court: Cases of Climate Justice 12:00pm – 12:45 pm

In this session, leading climate activists and lawyers will present some of these cases, assessing the harms and risks that were involved and how justice was sought.

Further details and registration

Recordings of past events

Global Trends in Climate Litigation – Lessons for COP26
2 July 2021, 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm

A Lecture by Patricia Espinosa, Executive Secretary of UN Climate Change
3 February 2021, 12pm – 1pm
An audio recording of this event is available here

The road ahead to COP26 – video
16 December 2020, 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Featuring: Lord Stern of Brentford, Archie Young, Pete Betts, Selam Abebe, Dr Alina Averchenkova
This panel discussion looks forward to the UK hosting of COP26 and considers key priorities & challenges for the UK presidency.


In the lead-up to the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow we will be producing a short series of videos focusing on some of the key issues that are likely to be addressed at the talks. The videos are presented by experts from the Grantham Research Institute.

Nicholas Stern – Climate Finance and the COP26 Climate Summit

In this first video Nicholas Stern explains why finance is central to efforts to tackle climate change, outlines recent developments in relation to climate finance and considers what progress could be made in addressing the issue during the COP26 summit.

News and commentaries

Biden’s move to re-join the Paris climate agreement boosts our chance to tackle the climate crisis – Lord Stern (published in The House magazine)

All to play for on the road to COP26 – Pete Betts (December 2020)

Aligning finance with the Paris Agreement – cutting through the noise – James Rydge (December 2020)

Policy analysis

Aligning finance with the Paris Agreement: An overview of concepts, approaches, progress and necessary action (December 2020)

An analysis of the Trump Administration’s economic and policy arguments for withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Agreement on climate change (August 2020)

The economic case for the United States to remain in the Paris Agreement on climate change (August 2020)

Written evidence submitted to the House of Commons Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee for its inquiry into the UK ‘Net Zero’ target and its hosting of the UN Climate Summit in 2021. (April 2020)

COP26 Universities Network Briefing on COVID-19 (April 2020)


What is COP26?

What is the Paris Agreement?

What is the state of international climate talks?

COP26 Universities Network

The Grantham Research Institute at LSE is part of the COP26 Universities Network – a growing group of more than 55 UK-based universities and research centres working together to raise ambition for tangible outcomes from the UN COP26 Climate Change Conference. The Network will create lasting partnerships and legacies that reach beyond this single event.

Keep in touch with the Grantham Research Institute at LSE
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