World Resource Institute

About the Open Climate Network

Objectives and Rationale

In order to tackle the threat of climate change, most countries have made high-level political commitments to reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and developed countries have pledged financing to help developing countries transition to low-carbon, climate-resilient development. While the relative ambition of these pledges varies widely, their effective implementation could begin to drive policy reforms that would help move countries toward a low-carbon future.

Catalyzed in part by these political commitments, dozens of countries are formulating domestic policies to address climate change, and billions of dollars are being earmarked for developing countries to fund an array of climate actions. Each country, however, operates under a unique set of political, social, economic, and environmental circumstances. Transparent, accessible, and nuanced information on country progress is hard to come by. How can we keep abreast of these developments and understand what they imply for countries’ ability to deliver on and ramp up their commitments? How can one country benefit from another’s experience? How can civil society contribute to the climate policy dialogue in an informed and meaningful way within this dynamic framework?

This is where Open Climate Network (OCN) comes in. The OCN brings together independent research institutes and civil society groups from key countries to track and report on their countries’ progress toward addressing climate change. OCN operates with a view toward identifying and removing barriers to effective policy implementation, and is committed to developing a robust analytical framework that can be applied consistently across countries, while respecting unique national circumstances.

OCN’s objectives are to:

  • Serve as a credible, easily accessible source of information on national policies related to GHG mitigation, and on provision of climate finance

  • Encourage countries to implement low-carbon strategies by drawing attention to the link between GHG mitigation and economic positioning

  • Prepare key players, especially civil society groups, to participate actively and constructively in national debates around low-carbon growth and development

Our Approach

OCN’s approach builds on the following pillars:

  • Country Partners: OCN comprises approximately 20 partner institutes from across the world. Our partners are respected climate policy experts, trusted domestically and internationally by policymakers and others as independent voices on the issue. In addition to technical expertise, they bring to the network a nuanced understanding of the domestic policy contexts, guiding OCN to approaches that will deliver relevant and useful information for each country.

  • Analysis that Engages: OCN’s approach centers on developing and deploying a set of tracking and assessment tools that help stakeholders – including our partners and civil society networks in OCN countries – raise the right questions about climate policy and climate finance at home and abroad. Using these tools, OCN assessments provide a credible and independent perspective on the state of climate policy and climate finance in each country, helping civil society to hold governments accountable, and helping governments to adopt best practices.

  • Tracking Progress: OCN aims to conduct regular assessments of country progress in key areas, documenting progress over time, highlighting gaps, recognizing improvements, and identifying and disseminating lessons.