Dr. Pietzcker Robert

Co-Lead National Energy Transitions Team

Robert Pietzcker is a senior scientist at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) with a background in physics and economics. He leads the team National Energy Transitions (together with Falko Ueckerdt) in the energy systems group of Research Department III - Transformation Pathways. His work focuses on the energy transition in the EU and Germany.

Currently, he coordinates the work package on "Modeling deep decarbonization pathways for the EU" of the INNOPATHS project and works on analyzing the 2030 climate targets of the EU in the German flagship project Ariadne.

In his PhD thesis he used hybrid energy-economy models to analyze two paramount building blocks of mitigation scenarios, namely the decarbonization of the transport sector and the integration of variable renewable energy into the power system on the example of photovoltaics and concentrating solar power (CSP). Further research interests include the representation of capital inertia in hybrid energy-economic models, the modeling of load management and storage, learning curves in energy models, and the effect of differing economic damage valuation on climate protection policies.

Robert Pietzcker joined the Research Domain 3 - Transformation Pathways as PhD student after working as a short-term consultant with McKinsey & Company. Previously, Robert studied physics at University of Freiburg as well as McGill University in Montreal, Canada, before graduating with a Diploma from University of Jena.


Working Group


Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK)
T +49 (0)331 288 2404
P.O. Box 60 12 03
14412 Potsdam

  • European Deep Decarbonization Pathways
  • Decarbonising Transport: Vehicles, Fuels and Modal Shift

Peer-reviewed Papers

  • Creutzig, F., Agoston, P., Goldschmidt, J.C., Luderer, G., Nemet, G., Pietzcker, R.C., 2017. The underestimated potential of solar energy to mitigate climate change. Nature Energy 2. doi:10.1038/nenergy.2017.140   [freely accessible pre-print]
  • Luderer, G., Pietzcker, R.C., Carrara, S., de Boer, H.S., Fujimori, S., Johnson, N., Mima, S., Arent, D., 2017. Assessment of wind and solar power in global low-carbon energy scenarios: An introduction. Energy Economics 64, 542–551. Link to paper: doi:10.1016/j.eneco.2017.03.027      [freely accessible pre-print]
  • Pietzcker, R.C., Ueckerdt, F., Carrara, S., Sytze de Boer, H., Després, J., Fujimori, S., Johnson, N., Kitous, A., Scholz, Y., Sullivan, P., Luderer, G. (2017). "System integration of wind and solar power in Integrated Assessment Models: A cross-model evaluation of new approaches" Energy Economics. Link to paper: doi:10.1016/j.eneco.2016.11.018 [freely accessible pre-print]
  • Scholz, Y., Gils, H.C., Pietzcker, R. (2017): "Application of a high-detail energy system model to derive power sector characteristics at high wind and solar shares". Energy Economics.
    Link to paper: 10.1016/j.eneco.2016.06.021 [freely accessible pre-print]
  • Ueckerdt, F., Pietzcker, R., Scholz, Y., Stetter, D., Giannousakis, A., Luderer, G., (2017): "Decarbonizing global power supply under region-specific consideration of challenges and options of integrating variable renewables in the REMIND model". Energy Economics.
    Link to paper: doi:10.1016/j.eneco.2016.05.012 [paper at Energy Economics] [freely accessible pre-print]
  • Collins, S., Deane, J.P., Poncelet, K., Panos, E., Pietzcker, R.C., Delarue, E., Ó Gallachóir, B.P., 2017. Integrating short term variations of the power system into integrated energy system models: A methodological review. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 76, 839–856. doi:10.1016/j.rser.2017.03.090       [freely accessible pre-print]
  • Kriegler, E., Bauer, N., Popp, A., Humpenöder, F., Leimbach, M., Strefler, J., Baumstark, L., Bodirsky, B.L., Hilaire, J., Klein, D., Mouratiadou, I., Weindl, I., Bertram, C., Dietrich, J.-P., Luderer, G., Pehl, M., Pietzcker, R., Piontek, F., Lotze-Campen, H., Biewald, A., Bonsch, M., Giannousakis, A., Kreidenweis, U., Müller, C., Rolinski, S., Schultes, A., Schwanitz, J., Stevanovic, M., Calvin, K., Emmerling, J., Fujimori, S., Edenhofer, O., n.d. Fossil-fueled development (SSP5): An energy and resource intensive scenario for the 21st century. Global Environmental Change. Link to paper: doi:10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2016.05.015

  • Bauer, N., Calvin, K., Emmerling, J., Fricko, O., Fujimori, S., Hilaire, J., Eom, J., Krey, V., Kriegler, E., Mouratiadou, I., Sytze de Boer, H., van den Berg, M., Carrara, S., Daioglou, V., Drouet, L., Edmonds, J.E., Gernaat, D., Havlik, P., Johnson, N., Klein, D., Kyle, P., Marangoni, G., Masui, T., Pietzcker, R.C., Strubegger, M., Wise, M., Riahi, K., van Vuuren, D.P., n.d. Shared Socio-Economic Pathways of the Energy Sector – Quantifying the Narratives. Global Environmental Change. Link to paper: doi:10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2016.07.006
  • Schäfer, A., Kyle, P., Pietzcker, R. (2016). Exploring the use of dynamic linear panel data models for evaluating energy/economy/environment models — an application for the transportation sector. Climatic Change 1–14. Open access at: doi:10.1007/s10584-014-1293-y
  • Ueckerdt, F., Brecha, R., Luderer, G., Sullivan, P., Schmid, E., Bauer, N., Böttger, D., Pietzcker, R. (2015): "Representing power sector variability and the integration of variable renewables in long-term energy-economy models using residual load duration curves". Energy. doi:10.1016/j.energy.2015.07.006
  • Bertram, C., Luderer, G., Pietzcker, R.C., Schmid, E., Kriegler, E., Edenhofer, O., (2015): "Complementing carbon prices with technology policies to keep climate targets within reach". Nature Clim. Change 5, 235-239. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nclimate2514. [paper at Nature Climate Change] [freely accessible link to pre-print]
  • Rogelj, J., Luderer, G., Pietzcker, R.C., Kriegler, E., Schaeffer, M., Krey, V., Riahi, K. (2015): "Energy system transformations for limiting end-of-century warming to below 1.5 °C". Nature Climate Change 5, 519–527. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nclimate2572
  • Pietzcker, R.C., Stetter, D., Manger, S., Luderer, G. (2014): "Using the sun to decarbonize the power sector: The economic potential of photovoltaics and concentrating solar power". Applied Energy. doi:10.1016/j.apenergy.2014.08.011 [paper at Applied Energy] [freely accessible pre-print]
  • Pietzcker RC, T Longden, W Chen, S Fu, E Kriegler, P Kyle, G Luderer (2014): "Long-term transport energy demand and climate policy: Alternative visions on Transport Decarbonization in Energy-Economy Models". Energy 64, 95–108. doi:10.1016/j.energy.2013.08.059. [paper at Energy] [freely accessible pre-print]
  • Luderer, G., Pietzcker, R.C., Bertram, C., Kriegler, E., Meinshausen, M., Edenhofer, O. (2013) "Economic mitigation challenges: how further delay closes the door for achieving climate targets". Environ. Res. Lett. 8, 034033. doi:10.1088/1748-9326/8/3/034033. [open access link]

  • Luderer G, Krey V, Calvin K, Merrick J, Mima S, Pietzcker RC, Vliet J van, Wada K (2014) "The role of renewable energy in climate stabilization: results from the EMF27 scenarios". Climatic Change, pp.1–15. doi:10.1007/s10584-013-0924-z. [link] [freely accessible pre-print]

  • McCollum, D.L., Y. Nagai, K. Riahi, G. Marangoni, K. Calvin, R. Pietzcker, J. van Vliet, and B. van der Zwaan (2013) “Energy investments under climate policy: a comparison of global models”. Climate Change Economics. [link] [freely accessible pre-print]
  • Luderer G, Pietzcker RC, Kriegler E, Haller M, Bauer N (2012) "Asia’s role in mitigating climate change: A technology and sector specific analysis with ReMIND-R". Energy Economics. doi:10.1016/j.eneco.2012.07.022. [link] [freely accessible pre-print]
  • P. Lehmann, F. Creutzig, M.-H. Ehlers, N. Friedrichsen, C. Heuson, L. Hirth, and R. Pietzcker (2012) “Carbon Lock-Out: Advancing Renewable Energy Policy in Europe”. Energies 2012, 5(2), 323-354; doi:10.3390/en5020323. [open access link]
  • Seidel, P., C. Becker, A. Steppke, T. Foerster, S. Wunderlich, V. Grosse, R. Pietzcker, F. Schmidl (2007): Noise properties of high-temperature superconducting dc-SQUID gradiometers. Physica C: Superconductivity.


 Other Publications (Book Chapters etc.)


  • Innovation Pathways, Strategies and Policies for the Low-Carbon Transition in Europe (INNOPATHS) - Work Package Leader
  • ENavi Kopernikus Project on Systems Integration (ENavi) - Task Leader
  • Advanced Model Development and Validation for Improved Analysis of Costs and Impacts of Mitigation Policies (ADVANCE) - Task Leader
  • Roadmaps Towards Sustainable Energy Futures (RoSE)
  • EMF-27 study by the Stanford Energy Modeling Forum (EMF)

  • "Spielt Geld keine Rolle? Karlshöher Gespräch zu Wirtschaft und Klimaschutz" (2018). Public panel discussion, Hamburg, Germany.
  • "Umbau des Energiesystems für Klimaschutz: Maßnahmen, Kosten und politische Entscheidungen" (2016). Vorlesung der technikwissenschaftlichen Klasse der Berlin-Brandenburgischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Berlin, Germany.
  • "Decarbonizing the power sector: what energy-economy-climate models say about the role of wind and solar power" (2016). Lecture for the International Master Study Programme Global Change Management. Potsdam, Germany.
  • "Modeling Systems Integration of Variable Renewable Energies in IAMs" (2015). Expert Workshop: Addressing Variable Renewables in Long-Term Planning (AVRIL). IRENA, Bonn, Germany.
  • "Decarbonization of Transport" (2013). Lecture at IASS summer school. Potsdam, Germany.

  • Pietzcker, R, Ueckerdt, F., Luderer, G. et al. (2016): "Evaluating the capacity of  Integrated Assessment Models (IAMs) to represent system integration challenges of wind and solar power". International Energy Workshop, UCC, Cork, Ireland.
  • Pietzcker, R, Ueckerdt, F., Luderer, G. et al. (2015): "Bridging the scales - representing the system integration challenge of wind and solar in Integrated Assessment Models". International Energy Workshop, Abu Dhabi, UAE.
  • Pietzcker, R, S. Manger, D. Stetter, G. Luderer, (2015): "Using the sun to decarbonize the power sector: The economic potential of photovoltaics and concentrating solar power". Strommarkttreffen, Berlin, Germany.
  • Pietzcker, R, Ueckerdt, F., Luderer, G. et al. (2014): "The big picture - representing the system integration challenge of wind and solar in Integrated Assessment Models". Wind Integration Workshop 2014, Berlin, Germany.
  • Pietzcker, R (2014): "Power sector decarbonization - which technologies matter?". IAEE European Energy Conference, Rome, Italy.
  • Pietzcker, R, S. Manger, D. Stetter, G. Luderer,(2013): "Solar Power for Climate Protection: The Competition between Photovoltaics and Concentrating Solar Power". SDEWES conference 2013, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
  • Pietzcker, R., F. Ueckerdt, G. Luderer (2013): Snowmass Conferences: Climate Change Impacts and Integrated Assessment (CCI/IA), Snowmass, USA.
  • Pietzcker, R., T Longden, W Chen, S Fu, E Kriegler, P Kyle, G Luderer (2013): "Long-Term Transport Energy Demand and Climate Policy: Alternative Visions on Transport Decarbonization in Energy-Economy Models". International Energy Workshop 2013, Paris, France
  • Pietzcker, R., E. Schmid, N. Bauer, G. Luderer (2011): Making Transport Clean: Cost-Optimal Decarbonisation Options For The Transport Sector. Conference Talk at 2011 International Energy Workshop in Stanford, USA.
  • Pietzcker, R.; Moll, R.; Bauer, N.; Luderer, G. (2010): Vehicle technologies and shifts in modal split as mitigation options towards a 2°C climate target. Conference talk at the International Society for Ecological Economics (ISEE) 11th BIENNIAL CONFERENCE Oldernburg, 2010.
  • Pietzcker, R., S. Manger, N. Bauer, G. Luderer, T. Bruckner (2009): The Role of Concentrating Solar Power and Photovoltaics for Climate Protection". 10th International Association for Energy Economics (IAEE) European Conference Vienna, 2009.