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IT and Electrical Power SupplyPotentials and Risks of Coupling Regarding Vulnerability and Resilience

Current and - even more so - future life and economy is essentially based on a resilient power supply. Hence, the (largely) undisturbed power supply gains great importance. In the light of the extensive, catastrophic and therefore economically and socially hardly bearable consequences of a long-lasting comprehensive power failure, the question of the power supply system’s vulnerability and resilience is very central. However, in the current debate on the transformation of the energy- and especially the electricity system it does not attract sufficient attention yet. Within the course of this project, the vulnerabilities of the IKT-based electricity system were analyzed as part of an empirical study. The vulnerabilities associated with the digitalization are discussed only on the verge of the debate on the energy transition and take on a minor role next to other factors to be considered. Based on this, framework conditions that are necessary for minimizing the vulnerability and for the realization of the highest possible and most cost efficient resilience in the energy system were deduced. The framework conditions currently undergo fundamental changes in many resilience-relevant areas. In the course of the appointment of new framework conditions, the unique chance of implementing resilience strategies at an early stage opens up. The suggestions for such framework conditions were divided in those for the prevention of a long-lasting blackout, e.g. dealing with IT-security, and those for the aversion of dangers for the citizens in case of a blackout, e.g. dealing with the supply of critical infrastructure or the empowerment of the population.