Photo of Mattias Hjerpe

Mattias Hjerpe

Senior Associate Professor

I examine urban climate transformation. How we distinguish transformation from merely gradual change is still unresolved. I research in what arenas and by which triggers urban transformation is initiated, maintained, embedded and scaled-up. 

UN-led climate collaboration 

I research the arenas and actors of transition. Primarily I examine two arenas for climate collaboration and action: the UN-led climate collaboration and urban politics and planning.

At the international climate change arena I study participating actors (state and non-state), what they do and what they want to achieve through their participation. We have here developed new concepts such as the governance profile and methods. Our research group mainly utilize the internationally unique series of surveys of the participants in the United Nations climate change negotiations. The INS gauges the participants’ views on topics as solutions and policies, leadership and roles of non-state actors. Combining surveys with interviews and document analyses enables new and original analyses of climate policy issues. Our results are used by, inter alia, the Secretariat of UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the negotiation teams of several states. 

Visualizing urban climate transformation

In the local arena for climate action, I struggle with the question whether it is possible to “see” urban transition and transformation? There is yet no agreement on how to distinguish transition and more radical transformation from merely gradual change. Consequently, we do not know yet how to measure urban transition; what triggers it initially, what’s maintaining it, what’s embedding it and what’s scaling it up?

Three factors limiting urban transformation

Our previous studies on climate responses in Swedish cities have established three weak spots: leadership and governance for resource mobilisation, public-private collaboration and citizen dialogue that currently limits transformative force. In close collaboration with Swedish municipalities we are testing methods and tools to overcome the weak spots. We will re-visit some of the thirty municipalities to establish whether the same factors are limiting their climate action today. We will also visit those cities in the world that are considered a frontrunners with respect to the three weak spots. In the Norrköping Decision Arena we will test different tools together with groups of local planners, politicians, businesses, citizens and other actors.



Viktor Sköld Gustafsson, Mattias Hjerpe, Gustav Strandberg (2023) Construction of a national natural hazard interaction framework: The case of Sweden ISCIENCE, Vol. 26, Article 106501 Continue to DOI


Sofie Storbjörk, Mattias Hjerpe (2022) Stuck in experimentation: exploring practical experiences and challenges of using floating housing to climate-proof waterfront urban development in Sweden Journal of Housing and the Built Environment, Vol. 37, p. 2263-2284 Continue to DOI
Anna Malmquist, Mattias Hjerpe, Erik Glaas, Hulda Karlsson, Tina Lassi (2022) Elderly Peoples Perceptions of Heat Stress and Adaptation to Heat: An Interview Study International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Vol. 19, Article 3775 Continue to DOI
Erik Glaas, Mattias Hjerpe, Elin Wihlborg, Sofie Storbjörk (2022) Disentangling municipal capacities for citizen participation in transformative climate adaptation Environmental Policy and Governance, Vol. 32, p. 179-191 Continue to DOI


Sofie Storbjörk, Mattias Hjerpe (2021) Climate-proofing coastal cities: What is needed to go from envisioning to enacting multifunctional solutions for waterfront climate adaptation? Ocean and Coastal Management, Vol. 210, Article 105732 Continue to DOI





  • 2014
    Lecturer, Linköping University
  • 2012
    Docent, Environmental Studies, Linköping University
  • 2005
  • PhD, Linköping university


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Centre for Climate Science and Policy Research

Research Leader

  • International Negotiations Survey(INS) (2007-present)
  • Climate Policy and Sustainable Development, CSPR research area (2010-present)
  • Baltic Challenges and Chances for local and regional development generated by Climate Change, EU Baltic Sea Region Programme, 2008-2012
  • Klimatförändringar:sårbarhet och anpassningsförmåga i Östergötland, Centrum för kommunstrategiska studier, LiU, 2008-2012 (Co-project leadership)
  • Climate Policy research Programme (Clipore), Principal Investigator task 5.2, Mistra, 2007-2011