A wind turbine casts its shadow over a rapeseed field in Randowhöhe, Brandenburg.
A wind turbine casts its shadow over a rapeseed field in Randowhöhe, Brandenburg. laif/Paul Langrock/Zenit

Headline: Kopernikus Project for the Energy Transition – Thematic Field No. 4 “System Integration and Networks for the Energy Supply” (Energy Transition Navigation System)

Laufzeit:
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Germany has made considerable progress in its transition to a sustainable energy system. But how can we ensure that the transformation of our energy systems is sustainable in its social, ecological and economic dimensions? This question is the focus of the Korpernikus research projects, a major research initiative launched by Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The IASS project “Energy Transition Navigation System” approaches the energy transition as a process of broad societal transformation. The project will investigate the respective roles of technological, economic, political, and social systems within the energy transition and develop options for their integration within this process. In doing so, the project will foster the development of new business models.

The energy transition is in full swing. Up to now, research has focused on developing technical solutions to facilitate the expansion of renewables. But the energy transition goes far beyond the energy sector. The IASS project “Energy Transition Navigation System” examines how technical progress in this area interacts with organisational forms, regulation, and behaviour. It thus widens the focus of previous research and approaches the energy transition as a process of broad societal transformation.

Understanding the energy supply system

In the first phase of the project, the emphasis is on gaining a better understanding of the complex energy supply system and related areas such as industry, transportation and consumption. Building on that, researchers and partners from business and civil society will address the question of how technical, economic, political and social structures could be integrated in a future energy system. The aim of the project is to ensure that the energy transition is implemented in both an effective and socially responsible way.

The Kopernikus Projects for the Energy Transition

The IASS project is one of the “Kopernikus Projects for the Energy Transition” that have been funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research since 2016. Work on it will be completed over a ten-year period in close cooperation with the other three Kopernikus projects “New Grid Structures”, “Storing Excess Electricity”, and “Industrial Processes”. The IASS is responsible for setting up and running the coordination office for the entire consortium and manages all internal and external communications. Cooperation with other external partners in model regions and living laboratories is also part of its remit.