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Research Fields

Business, Value Chains and Consumption

For economic activity to become more sustainable, all actors along value chains must engage and cooperate with each other. Companies shape products, markets and business models and therefore have a key role to play. But individuals also influence whether and how socio-ecological transformation succeeds through consumption patterns and lifestyles. In the research field, "Business, Value Chains, and Consumption," of the Institute for Ecological Economy Research, we develop, test and evaluate innovative methods and instruments for sustainability management, practical concepts for sustainable value chains and strategies to promote sustainable production and consumption patterns in a problem-oriented and transdisciplinary way.

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Ecological Economics and Environmental Policy

The speed of economic and social transformation processes has increased in recent years. Not only with respect to ecology have "old certainties" been put into question. Reorientation is necessary on various levels: what possibilities for ecological structural change are there under the conditions of globalisation? How can a sustainable economy be achieved? And which new forms of governance does society need for the change necessary? The research field Ecological Economics and Environmental Policy is strongly involved in working out solutions for these new questions.

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Sustainable Energy and Climate Protection

"The energy system currently in use is not a sustainable one." That is one of the key conclusions arrived at in a report by the Enquête Commission on Sustainable Energy Supply set up by the federal parliament of Germany. How can this development be changed for the better? What kind of innovations, government policies, societal prerequisites will necessitate improvement? These are core questions, the possible answers to which are the subject of examination by IOeW's Sustainable Energy and Climate Protection research Area. This division has been producing expertises and surveys which are highly practice-relevant and politically applicable for several years now.

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