Interventions for

rapid global change


Interventions for Rapid Global Change

The Cascade Institute is a Canadian research center that addresses the full range of humanity’s converging environmental, economic, political, technological, and health crises. Using advanced methods to map and model complex global systems, we identify and help implement high-leverage interventions that could rapidly shift humanity’s course towards fair and sustainable prosperity.

We should listen to a renowned scientist’s warning on climate change

Thomas Homer-Dixon
A vital scientific paper argues that far more warming is “in the pipeline” than conventional models predict, requiring humanity's response to the climate crisis be much more radical than currently planned.

Canada needs to dig deep to become a world leader in geothermal technology

Rebecca Pearce and Ian Graham
A worldwide race for next-generation geothermal technology has begun – and Canada needs to get serious about joining, lest it fall to the back of the alternative-energy pack.

Why so much is going wrong at the same time

Thomas Homer-Dixon
Thomas Homer-Dixon argues that the world is in a polycrisis generated by novel and unprecedented conditions, as measured by total human energy consumption, Earth’s energy imbalance, the human population’s total biomass, and global connectivity.


14 lessons for social movement success

Amy Janzwood
This brief summarizes lessons from the academic literature for building successful social movements. It outlines several core insights with an eye on their practical application for social movements, advocacy campaigns, and their supporters.

Pension funds and the post-pandemic economy: A shift to bold climate leadership

Scott Janzwood
February 23, 2021 • This Brief analyzes the impact of the pandemic on pension funds and presents strategies for organizations, activists, and researchers to accelerate pension fund leadership on climate change.

Network dynamics of the pandemic shock: Three network shifts and why they matter

Jinelle Piereder
January 11, 2021 • This Brief analyzes three major shifts in humanity’s networks that the COVID-19 pandemic has triggered or accelerated: (1) network centralization, (2) network fragmentation and reconfiguration, and (3) network formation. It then examines the impact of these shifts across economic, food, information, and governance systems.

Global polycrisis: The causal mechanisms of crisis entanglement

Michael Lawrence, Thomas Homer-Dixon, Scott Janzwood, Johan Rockström, Ortwin Renn, and Jonathan F. Donges
This paper defines the concept of global polycrisis, highlights its value-added in comparison to related concepts, and provides a theoretical framework to explain causal mechanisms currently entangling many of the world’s crises.

What is a global polycrisis?

Michael Lawrence, Scott Janzwood, and Thomas Homer-Dixon
September 16, 2022 • This discussion paper argues that the concept of “global polycrisis” provides a useful framework with which to understand and address major problems afflicting humanity today.

Deep Geothermal Superpower: Canada’s potential for a breakthrough in enhanced geothermal systems

Ian Graham, Ellen Quigley, Scott Janzwood, and Thomas Homer-Dixon
This opportunity analysis makes the case that Canada can and should become the global leader in ultra-deep geothermal electricity production.