Global context

The PAGES project is an international effort to coordinate and promote past global change research through the themes climate, environment, and humans.

Over the last few years, the context of environmental research has been subject to exciting developments. Under the umbrella of the United Nations, the global community adopted major international political agreements in areas such as sustainability, climate, disasters, and biodiversity. These agreements have directed much-needed attention towards environmental and sustainability challenges, provided frameworks for global action and sharpened the demand for scientific knowledge. This is a great responsibility and opportunity for science and its enablers, such as research programs like PAGES, research funders, and others.

Several global political agreements adopted by the United Nations, including the Paris climate agreement, the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, and the very comprehensive 2030 Development Agenda, have created a framework for policy goals and implicit directions for research and innovation. These agreements build on 17 Sustainable Development Goals and associated 169 targets. The resulting global agenda comprehensively addresses key global sustainability challenges. Many of them associate directly with core domains of PAGES’ expertise, such as climate change, ocean health, land systems, biodiversity, and disaster risk, or they are indirectly associated with the scope of PAGES, such as questions related to the sustainable provision of water, food, and energy, or favourable conditions for human health.