The IÖW is a leading scientific institute in the field of practice-oriented sustainability research. It devises strategies and approaches for viable, long-term economic activity – for an economy which enables a good life and preserves natural resources.
What are current trends, policy approaches, and future scenarios of sustainable food consumption? Ten articles published in the e-journal 'Sustainability: Science, Practice, & Policy' highlight selected topics such as lifestyle-specific food policies, meat-consumption, or awareness rising for healthy and environmentally conscious food choices. IÖW-scientist Dr. Gerd Scholl is one of three guest editors of this special issue. In the article 'Sustainable Food Consumption: When Evidence-Based Policy Making Meets Policy-Minded Research' he introduces to the volume, together with Michal Sedlacko and Lucia Reisch.
On 28th October 2013 the IÖW hosted the Green Talents 2013 – a group of 25 international scientists who won the BMBF-competition ‘Green Talents – International Forum for High Potentials in Sustainable Development’. As one of the jury members, IÖW-Director Thomas Korbun was involved in assessing over 430 applications from 80 countries. The young scientists were distinguished for the interdisciplinary character of their work as well as their engagement with sustainability.
Technological innovations are commonly seen as decisive for overcoming environmental exploitation and degradation. That this view is too narrow was the common sense of an encounter of Europe’s leading sustainability experts which took place in Brussels from 10-11 October 2013. The researchers stressed that only the interplay with social innovations can lead to a significant step towards a sustainable society. The experts’ gathering was attended by 38 sustainability experts from 12 countries. It was part of the European project RESPONDER, which enables scientists and policy makers to exchange experiences and knowledge with regard to sustainable consumption issues.
The new IÖW Annual Report 2012/2013 presents projects, events and publications of the institute with an international focus. Among the projects are, e.g. the designing of the science-policy-interface at the European level, biofuel case-studies from Brazil and Malawi or means of equipping the Baltic States to deal with climate change. The IÖW works together on many of these topics with international cooperation partners and on behalf of international sponsors. The aim of IÖW's work in a nutshell: Promoting practicable, everyday sustainability.
On August 12th IÖW scientist Dr Andrea Liesen was presented with the Best Dissertation Award 2013 by the Organizations and the Natural Environment (ONE) Division of the Academy of Management (AOM). In her PhD thesis ‘Climate Change and Asset Prices – Evidence on Market Inefficiency in Europe’, written at the University of Leeds, Andrea Liesen examines the efficiency of financial markets to correctly price companies’ climate change induced systematic risks. The prize was awarded at the 73rd Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management in Lake Buena Vista (Orlando), Florida, in cooperation with Sage Publications.
Openness and cooperation are major principles of the German Adaptation Strategy. The development and implementation of adaptation policies is therefore accompanied by broad and diversified stakeholder participation processes. The IOEW has analysed the individual participation processes and found out that different levels of participation were achieved, ranging from simple communication through consultation and co-production to co-decision. From the "lessons learned", the report recommends the development of participatory processes and suggests appropriate approaches and methods depending on which aim is to be achieved.
Why are houses and apartments in many European countries empty, whilst in other parts people cannot afford to buy or rent a living space? Because the building sector is mainly used as an engine to boost economic growth, say Europe’s leading experts on sustainable housing. From 6-7 June 2013 European housing experts convened in Barcelona to discuss the future of housing in the workshop “Sustainable Housing in a Post-Growth Europe”. More than 50 professionals from 15 European countries took part in the event and now they demand a paradigm shift: The building sector should no longer be seen as an engine of economic growth, but instead better fulfil its basic function, i.e. provide liveable and affordable space for the Europeans to reside.