Climatic Change

, Volume 121, Issue 3, pp 499–512 | Cite as

The Oxford Principles

  • Steve RaynerEmail author
  • Clare Heyward
  • Tim Kruger
  • Nick Pidgeon
  • Catherine Redgwell
  • Julian Savulescu


Scientific momentum is increasing behind efforts to develop geoengineering options, but it is widely acknowledged that the challenges of geoengineering are as much political and social as they are technical. Legislators are looking for guidance on the governance of geoengineering research and possible deployment. The Oxford Principles are five high-level principles for geoengineering governance. This article explains their intended function and the core societal values which they attempt to capture. Finally, it proposes a framework for their implementation in a flexible governance architecture through the formulation of technology-specific research protocols.


Open Publication Select Committee Governance Regime Outdoor Experiment Review Body 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Steve Rayner, Clare Heyward, Tim Kruger and Julian Savulescu’s contributions were supported by the Oxford Geoengineering Programme, Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford. Steve Rayner and Julian Savulescu also acknowledge funding from the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) – grant ES/J007730/1. Nick Pidgeon’s contribution was supported through the EPSRC’s Integrated Assessment of Geoengineering Proposals project (EP/I014721/1) and the US National Science Foundation Center for Nanotechnology in Society at the University of California at Santa Barbara (cooperative agreement SES 0938099).

The authors thank participants at the Geoengineering Workshop, hosted by the University of Washington College of the Environment, 23–24th April 2012, and Jason Blackstock, Dan Bodansky and Steve Gardiner for comments on an earlier version of this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Steve Rayner
    • 1
    Email author
  • Clare Heyward
    • 2
  • Tim Kruger
    • 3
  • Nick Pidgeon
    • 4
  • Catherine Redgwell
    • 5
  • Julian Savulescu
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute for Science, Innovation and SocietyUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK
  2. 2.Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics, Department of PhilosophyUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK
  3. 3.Oxford Geoengineering Programme, Oxford Martin SchoolUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK
  4. 4.School of PsychologyUniversity of CardiffCardiffUK
  5. 5.Faculty of LawsUniversity College LondonLondonUK

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