The Earth System Governance project is a global research alliance that explores novel, effective governance mechanisms to cope with the current transitions in the biogeochemical systems of the planet. A decade after its inception, this article offers an overview of the project’s new research framework (which is built upon a review of existing earth system governance research), the goal of which is to continue to stimulate a pluralistic, vibrant and relevant research community.

This framework is composed of contextual conditions (transformations, inequality, Anthropocene and diversity), which capture what is being observed empirically, and five sets of research lenses: architecture and agency; democracy and power; justice and allocation; anticipation and imagination; and adaptiveness and reflexivity.

Ultimately the goal is to guide and inspire the systematic study of how societies prepare for accelerated climate change and wider earth system change, as well as policy responses.

As well as this summary, it is possible to access the full Earth System Governance Science and Implementation Plan (research agenda) and more information at the Earth Systems Governance project website.

Åsa Persson is a member of the Scientific Steering Committee of the Earth System Governance project.