With the historic decision to phase out nuclear energy following the Fukushima accident and the conversion to renewable energy, Germany is faced with the Herculean task of achieving a reduction in fossil energy supply from 80% of the national primary energy consumption today to below 20% by the year 2050.
Tackling this task without significantly affecting the quantity and quality of the energy services is a great challenge and, of course, will have consequences, especially also in the social and political context.
There is a need for more system and transformation knowledge in order to meet these challenges and to provide knowledge for guiding decision making in the economy, politics and society at the interface between technology development, organizational control and individual action.
To this end, the project consortium carries out the following tasks:
- An inventory of university, non-university and – as far as publicly accessible – entrepreneurial activities in energy research which are expected to provide relevant results for implementing the energy transition, particularly with respect to the energy targets set out by the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg. The inventory is based on an analysis of documents, guidelines issued by the state ministries, websites, and other publications.
- Qualitative empirical underpinning of these results through an internet survey and guideline-based interviews with the project leaders and managers in central research institutes of the different institutions with the aim of gathering information on key areas, objectives, methods, results, and plans for the future.
- An evaluation of the collected information with respect to the potentials, strengths and weaknesses of the different research projects and programs regarding their feasibility for the transformation processes in the context of the energy transition.
- A final workshop with key actors from ministries, scientific organizations and other important actors in energy research in Baden-Württemberg. The aim is to assess the need for and feasibility of action derived from the analyses, to explore the potential of incentives inside and outside Baden-Württemberg, to develop measures to be taken by the State in order to overcome identified deficits, and to formulate recommendations for science and energy policy of the State.
ITAS and the three other institutes involved closely cooperate in all work packages. They share their respective networks, and especially during the field phase of the survey they focus on the research landscape they are particularly familiar with, both thematically and regionally.