New avenues for macro-economic modelling under global constraints: The HARMONEY, MARCO, and MEDEAS models

Sustainable Circular Economy

Dear colleagues,

I am delighted to announce an exciting upcoming webinar on "New avenues for macro-economic modelling under global constraints: The HARMONEY, MARCO, and MEDEAS models". The emerging field of ecological macro-economics is advancing rapidly and I am really looking forward to hearing from three leading researchers in the field. Feel free to forward this to any interested colleagues!


Paul Brockway - Faculty of Environment - University of Leeds, UK

Carey King - Energy Institute, The University of Texas at Austin

Jaime Nieto Vega, University of Valladolid, Spain and the University of Leeds, UK

Moderator: Stefan Pauliuk, Uni Freiburg, Germany

Time: 16.07.2024 | 16:00-17:30 CEST // 9-10:30 a.m. CDT


Common energy-economy models feature only limited energy-economy integration and thermodynamic consistency. Typically, they only assign a small role for energy in economic growth and fail to explicitly include the useful stage of energy flows or ignore thermodynamic efficiencies in primary–final–useful energy transformations. As a consequence, the economy-wide impacts of the energy system transformation are potentially underestimated, and the physical feasibility of different transformation remains unassessed. Furthermore, material cycles and stocks of buildings, infrastructure and machinery, as well as explicit indicators of service provisioning for housing, nutrition, mobility, etc are often also not well represented (Wiedenhofer et al. 2024*). This limits our ability to assess the potentials of materials- and energy-oriented supply- and demand-side strategies aligned with a 1.5-2°C global warming limit.

In response, novel macro-econometric models are being developed for coupling the transformations of the energy system (efficiency, energy services, rebound), the industrial system (materials, products) and the macro-economic system (employment, GDP, debt). In this seminar, three leading model frameworks are presented, which address these challenges:

HARMONEY, presented by Carey King: A long-term dynamic growth model that endogenously links biophysical and economic variables in a stock-flow consistent manner.

MARCO, presented by Paul Brockway: A post-Keynesian framework, explicitly including thermodynamic energy efficiency and flows of useful energy, with stochastic equations and econometrically estimated parameters.

MEDEAS, presented by Jamie Nieto: An open source modelling framework to represent biophysical constraints to energy availability, integration of detailed sectoral economic structure (input–output analysis) within a system dynamics approach, and a rich set of socioeconomic and environmental impact indicators.

After an introduction to the model frameworks, there will be a common discussion about the underlying assumptions, data needs, further development, and future applications.

This webinar is organized by the industry working group of the IIASA-EDITS project “Energy Demand changes Induced by Technological and Social innovations

Register here:


* Wiedenhofer et al. (2024):