One of the core questions related to achieving climate protection targets is how to bring “exhausted” potential for climate protection more closely into line with what is theoretically possible. Established policy instruments such as legislation, regulations, subsidies, information and advice do not appear to be sufficient. So what part could social innovations and bottom-up initiatives play in speeding up the Energiewende (“energy transformation”)? Who are the agents of social innovation in civil society and bottom-up processes? How can their plans be supported? This project is designed to examine these key questions.
In this project, the project partners will assess energy- and climate protection-related social innovations and bottom-up processes, as well as potential key actors, and the findings will be appraised to determine their suitability for use in subsequent stages of the project. Action areas will be identified in which social innovations and bottom-up processes can play a part in bringing about the energy transformation. Ideas and approaches will then be developed and discussed in consultation with key actors from civil society as well as climate change and energy sector stakeholders. Recommendations will be drawn up on how actors involved in bottom-up processes and important agents of social innovation – with a focus on non-profit organisations and social enterprises – can be addressed and integrated into initiatives in future by the Austrian Climate and Energy Fund.
The project is being funded by the Climate and Energy Fund.