From the KIN to the Scientific Climate Council

With due pride (but also with a bit of pain in our hearts), we can report that three scientists who have contributed to the KIN from the very beginning have been appointed as members of Minister Rob Jetten’s Scientific Climate Council (WKR). They are Heleen de Coninck (chair of the KIN Steering Committee), Linda Steg (chair KIN Working Group-Pact) and Marjolijn Haasnoot (chair KIN Working Group-Program). In January, Jan Willem Erisman, who also co-authored the KIN opinion, was appointed chair of the WKR. Heleen has now been selected vice-chair, which means she can no longer fulfil her role as chair of the KIN Steering Committee. For now, Gerard van der Steenhoven will assume this role.

The task of the WKR is advising the government and parliament on climate policy, solicited and unsolicited. They started officially on April 15. We warmly congratulate Marjolijn, Linda and Heleen on their appointment and wish them every success in their new role at the Climate Council.

Many people wonder how the WKR relates to the KIN. The Scientific Climate Council advises the government on climate policy: what is working or not working, what is needed now, but also: what do we not know now and what needs to be worked on? The WKR does not itself work on transitions and does not conduct further required research on them. This is precisely where the KIN will play an important role: by creating an overview of the national scientific field, connecting it, and putting new research and knowledge programs on the agenda and/or initiating them. Short, informal lines between the KIN and the WKR help in this regard.