Conceptualizing Germany’s Energy Transition: Institutions, by Ludger Gailing, Timothy Moss

By Ludger Gailing, Timothy Moss

This is the 1st ebook to discover methods of conceptualizing Germany’s ongoing strength transition. even though largely acclaimed in coverage and learn circles around the globe, the Energiewende is poorly understood when it comes to social technology scholarship. there's an pressing have to delve past descriptive bills of coverage implementation and contestation to be able to unpack the deeper matters at play in what has been termed a 'grand societal transformation.' The authors procedure this in 3 ways: First, they decide upon and signify conceptual ways suited for reading the reordering of institutional preparations, socio-material configurations, strength relatives and spatial buildings of power structures in Germany and past. moment, they determine the worth of those ideas in describing and explaining power transitions, pinpointing their relative strengths and weaknesses and exploring components of complementarity and incompatibility. 3rd, they illustrate how those techniques will be utilized – separately and together – to counterpoint empirical examine of Germany’s strength transition.

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The reproduction of the path is then structurally locked into these positive feedback mechanisms that yield increasing returns over time. Note that path dependency is not only a feature of formal institutions. This is relevant to energy transitions, with Wolsink (2012, p. 832), for instance, ascribing path dependency to the centralized regulation and general technological design of 26 S. BECKER ET AL. energy infrastructures.  8), a development path involves three phases: the first is the critical juncture in which events trigger a move toward a particular path out of at least two possibilities; the second is the period of reproduction, that is, the period in which positive feedback mechanisms […] reinforce the movement along one path; and finally, the path comes to an end when new events dislodge the long-lasting equilibrium.

In this context, the development of renewable energies is often driven far more by physical factors and economic incentives than by the spatial location of energy demand. The new importance of rural areas: It should be emphasized that the Energiewende is primarily—so far—not an urban but a rural phenomenon. Although cities are in many cases an important laboratory for new technologies and socio-technical innovations in the energy sector (Bulkeley and Kern 2006), rural areas are becoming increasingly significant as energy suppliers for cities and urban agglomerations.

1503) note, this is very closely related to issues 28 S. BECKER ET AL. of power in transition as ‘power becomes a question of the representation of problems (and solutions) and competition over which representations (discourses) constitute reality, or viable alternative realities’. Most recently, Bosman et al. (2014) have assessed this set of issues by addressing what they call ‘discursive regime dynamics’. In this section, we seek to extend their work and engage with the new strand of discursive institutionalism.

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