Professor, International Relations, School of Global Policy and Strategy, University of California, San Diego
David Victor is a professor of international relations at the School of Global Policy and Strategy at UC San Diego. He is a director of the Laboratory on International Law and Regulation and of the campus-wide Deep Decarbonization Initiative, which focuses on real world strategies for bringing the world to nearly zero emissions of warming gases. Prior to joining the faculty at UC San Diego, Victor was a professor at Stanford Law School where he taught energy and environmental law.
His research focuses on regulated industries and how regulation affects the operation of major energy markets. Much of his research is at the intersection of climate change science and policy. Victor authored “Global Warming Gridlock,” which explains why the world hasn’t made much diplomatic progress on the problem of climate change while also exploring new strategies that would be more effective. The book was recognized by The Economist as one of the best books of 2011.
Victor was a convening lead author for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a United Nations-sanctioned international body with 195 country members that won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007. Victor has been tapped by Southern California Edison to lead the company’s Community Engagement Panel for decommissioning of the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant. According to utility officials, he was chosen to lead the panel because he has the vision, leadership and experience to bring together a diverse group of concerned people. Victor, in 2016, was appointed to co-chair the Brookings Institution Initiative on Energy and Climate. He is a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on Energy, where his work focuses on the role of natural gas as a transition fuel to deep decarbonization
At UC San Diego, Victor and the ILAR research team look at how international agreements function and why some agreements are much more effective than others. ILAR’s research looks at all major areas of international cooperation, including environment, human rights, trade and investment. The lab also conducts experimental research to investigate how humans make the complex decisions that are typical of designing and implementing international agreements.
His PhD is from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and AB from Harvard University.