COP 28 – a global conference that tackles the climate crisis – is happening 30 November – 12 December 2023 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

The 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference or Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC, more commonly referred to as COP28, will be the 28th United Nations Climate Change conference, held at the Expo City, Dubai.

The climate conference will bring together world leaders, organisations, climate activists and academics to build on the outcomes of COP27 and speed up actions that are essential to tackling the climate emergency.

The summit is an important opportunity for the University to feed into the wider goals and commitment to climate action and help influence policy change through research.

University of Edinburgh delegation

A 12-strong delegation of climate scientists and experts from Edinburgh – including student representatives and academics – is attending the summit to observe the proceedings, influence negotiations, draft text for agreements, recommendations and declarations, and participate in panels and discussions.

This year, the University has also provided delegate passes to the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa, in recognition of the importance of partners from the Global South being in attendance at the summit.

The University is also making online passes to COP28 available to students on relevant undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.

University of Edinburgh delegation

The diverse and cross-disciplinary team attending COP28 on behalf of the University of Edinburgh – including staff and students – embodies the University’s commitment to supporting urgent, knowledge-based action on climate change.

Professor Jamie Cross

Professor Liz Grant

Professor Alan Duncan

Dr Sian Henley

Alma Kalina Riessler

Joud Almanie

Dr Ian Cochran

Dr Meriwether Wilson

Gail Sant

Professor Soledad Garcia Ferrari

Jana Alramahi

Conference events

Members of the Edinburgh delegation – which includes representatives from each of the University’s three Colleges – will lead on and participate in a range of events during the two-week summit.

Professor Liz Grant will take part in a panel discussion on Sunday 3 December about the critical link between health and climate change.

On Wednesday 6 December, Professor Alan Duncan will take part in AMPLIFY, an event focussed on the effect of climate change on agriculture and food systems in low- and middle-income countries.

Dr Sian Henley will lead and participate in several events, including a discussion on Wednesday 6 December about what this year’s extremely low sea ice levels tell us about Antarctica’s future.

On Friday 8 December, Professor Sole Garcia Ferrari will participate in a COP28 Universities Climate Network roundtable discussion exploring options to expand university impact in key sectors of the economy and society.

Student delegates

On Saturday 2 December the ClimateScience Olympiad Ceremony – co-organised by Edinburgh student Iona Spooner – will reveal the finalists of a contest challenging young people to come up with innovative climate solutions.

On Friday 8 December undergraduate student Jana Alramahi will take part in a panel discussion on the role of higher education and research institutions in efforts to tackle climate change.

Postgraduate student Respect Musiyiwa will speak at a U7+ Alliance-led event on 9 December about the impact of university partnerships on delivering climate solutions. The U7+ Alliance is a group of international universities looking at ways to address the most pressing global challenges. Edinburgh is a founding member of the network, which  is made up of more than 30 universities from G7 countries.

Learning for a Sustainable Future: Live at COP28

In parallel with the summit, the University is running a free, open access, online course called ‘Learning for a Sustainable Future: Live at COP28’. It will cover the broader context of COP28, explore the core themes of the summit and share ideas and inspiration on how collaborative action can be taken for a more sustainable future. The course is delivered by the University of Edinburgh in partnership with the British Council and Learning for Sustainability Scotland for educators, community groups and individuals across the world.

What you’ll learn

  • Investigate the broader context of COP28 and consider other associated frameworks such as The UN Convention on Biological Diversity.

  • Consider local, national, and global perspectives on COP28 through a range of responses to the core themes of the Conference.

  • Share ideas and inspiration as to how individuals, communities and organisations can take collaborative action for a sustainable future.

Find out more

Group of people meeting graphic

COP and the University of Edinburgh

The University of Edinburgh contributes to annual COPs in four main ways: by presenting research; through advocacy; by observing negotiations, and by analysing the discussions for various audiences.

Find out how the University of Edinburgh has been involved in COP in recent years, including the historic gathering in Glasgow for COP26.

Meet our Climate 75





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