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Innovative Approaches in European Sustainable Consumption Policies

The report summarises the outcomes of the project “Assessing the potential of various instruments for sustainable consumption practices and greening of the market” (ASCEE). The scope of the ASCEE project was to consider the latest trends in policies supporting sustainable consumption and production (SCP), and to indicate key elements of policies supporting sustainable consumption. Our main research emphasis dealt with innovative instruments, approaches and practices to support sustainable consumption. The aim of ASCEE was to contribute to policy development

  • to indicate promising innovative approaches and tools to foster sustainable consumption and
  • to present some strategic recommendations on how to progress in this arena.

The structure of the report is as follows: the report describes the challenge of sustainable consumption in Chapter 1 and presents a short overview on selected European activities. The following Chapter 2 “Innovative approaches” reports on the three themes we distinguished, and presents our findings for the examined cases, supplemented by some additional empirical findings on innovative instruments worth reporting, but not in the same level of detail as the nine cases. Our central findings are presented in chapter 3 “Empirical Insights” which highlights our findings and key messages. Chapter 4 “Assessment of instruments” is dedicated to the topic of assessment of political instruments which forms an integral part of making sustainable consumption policy. It is followed by Chapter 5 “Policy Recommendations” which introduces our key recommendations addressed to policy-makers, public authorities and stakeholders. Finally, chapter 6 “Outlook” completes the report and hints at areas linked to sustainable consumption, but not dealt with in this report, and to important R&D topics.