About the Research

Welcome to Carbon Market Morals. My name is Robbie Watt and I run a research project exploring the moral value of carbon offset credits. 

The research forms part of The Leverhulme Centre for the Study of Value where we have a team of academics investigating how people value social and environmental goods in an increasingly market-driven society.


At the Warsaw UN climate talks, highlighting the influence of Arcellor Mittal steel company.

I am in the climate/carbon stream of the Centre looking at offsets in terms of the interactions between people’s working practices and their values and conceptions of the good.

The research project asks:

1. What are the moral rationales for and problems of carbon offsetting? 

2. How do people respond practically to the moral concerns of offsetting?

To answer these questions I am interviewing a broad range of actors involved in carbon markets, including project developers, verifiers, retailers and buyers.

The research output will show how carbon market actors manage the ethical concerns of offsetting.

Findings will be presented in summary form for research participants, in Leverhulme Centre working papers, and in a PhD thesis submitted to the University of Manchester.

I primarily study the voluntary carbon market but maintain an active interest in the compliance trading and offset markets including the Clean Development Mechanism.

If you are interested in this area of research, have research you would like to share, or would like to take part in the interview process, please do get in touch.