Sarah is a researcher at the International Institute for Environment and Development, working closely with networks of grassroots organisations and municipal authorities on financing incremental upgrading and basic services. In particular, she supports SDI and the Asian Coalition for Housing Rights to establish innovative partnerships with private actors and secure access to international development assistance. She has recently co-edited a book, Responding to Climate Change in Asian Cities: Governance for a more resilient urban future, that explores some of these issues.
Sarah also holds the position of Global Programme Lead and Senior Economist with the Coalition for Urban Transitions, a network jointly hosted by C40 Cities and the WRI Ross Centre for Cities. In this role, Sarah oversees a programme of research supporting national governments to enable low-carbon, climate-resilient urban development. The research is conducted by 24 partner organisations, including PwC, McKinsey, LSE, the African Centre for Cities, Siemens, OECD and Tsinghua University.
While at the University of Leeds, Sarah managed the Climate Smart Cities programme in Brazil, Indonesia, Malaysia and Rwanda, and supported the research in India and China. The research team evaluated the economic feasibility and mitigation potential of a wide array of low carbon measures for each city, which allowed them to assess the wider economic case for climate action. Their findings have been used to inform the design of urban climate plans, notably the adoption of emission reduction targets in Recife (Brazil). The findings of the Climate Smart Cities programme were featured in the first New Climate Economy report, “Better Growth, Better Climate“, and I subsequently managed the delivery of the Cities chapter in the second report, “Seizing the Global Opportunity“. This work was featured in the Guardian, Washington Post and National Geographic, among other outlets.
• Financing urban infrastructure
• Urban governance for inclusion and sustainability
• Climate and energy policy in urban areas
- Low Carbon Cities: Is Ambitious Action Affordable?
15 Aug 2016. Andrew Sudmant, Joel Millward-Hopkins, Sarah Colenbrander, Andy Gouldson
- Cities and climate change mitigation: Economic opportunities and governance challenges in Asia
1 May 2016. Andy Gouldson, Sarah Colenbrander, Andrew Sudmant, N. Kerr, Faye McAnulla, Stephen Hall, Effie Papargyropolou
- Understanding the Case for Low-Carbon Investment through Bottom-up Assessments of City-Scale Opportunities
23 Feb 2016. Andrew Sudmant, Andy Gouldson, Sarah Colenbrander, Faye McAnulla, N. Kerr
- The economic case for low carbon waste management in rapidly growing cities in the developing world: The case of Palembang, Indonesia
5 Nov 2015. Sarah Colenbrander, Andrew Sudmant, Andy Gouldson
- Exploring the economic case for climate action in cities
4 Sep 2015. Andy Gouldson, Sarah Colenbrander, Andrew Sudmant, Faye McAnulla, N. Kerr
- Exploring the economic case for early investment in climate change mitigation in middle-income countries: a case study of Johor Bahru, Malaysia
2 Jun 2015. Sarah Colenbrander, Andy Gouldson, Andrew Sudmant
- The economic case for low-carbon development in rapidly growing developing world cities: A case study of Palembang, Indonesia
28 Jan 2015. Sarah Colenbrander, Andy Gouldson, Andrew Sudmant
- Why India’s waste pickers are key to a fair climate deal (on www.climatechangenews.com)
3 Jan 2017
- Why low-carbon urban development in African cities makes economic sense
22 Mar 2016
- Low-carbon future could save Brazilian city billions
25 Feb 2016
- Green Climate Fund must think micro for macro impact (on www.climatechangenews.com)
26 Jan 2016