Ongoing Lead Project

The lead project’s aim is to better understand the political construction and the governance of critical infrastructures in conjunction with their spatial dimension. Infrastructures are increasingly considered regarding their vulnerability to disruption and the security risks resulting from it. Political resources are mobilized to appropriately secure ‘critical infrastructures’ such as communications and energy networks. But which infrastructures are considered critical and why? Which governance approaches are used to manage infrastructure-related risks? Urban climate change adaptation and energy transitions are two fields in which the aspect of infrastructural criticality receives increasing attention. Therefore, they will be in the centre of analysis in this lead project. more

Ongoing Third-party Funded Projects

The ESRa project examines factors that characterize regions with a predominantly positive attitude towards energy system transformation from regions with a negative attitude. The project aims at explaining how these factors can be influenced with regard to the realization of a successful energy transition. The project relates this question to the phenomenon of increasing regional disparities and the drifting apart of regions concerning those that draw advantage from globalization processes and those that do not. The success of an energy system transformation will depend considerably on helping less favorably equipped regions to develop and use such resources and skills.<br/> more

This project aims at analysing the climate change policy of the City of Turku and compare it with the experience of three comparable cities, Malmö, Rostock, and Groningen. The City of Turku aims at becoming a carbon-neutral city by 2029. The strategy encompasses an implementation programme and specific measures. Since similar strategies have been decided upon and implemented in many European cities, there is much to learn from other forerunner cities. more

The project “region 4.0” is an alliance of the programme “Wandel durch Innovation in der Region (WIR!)” of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The project alliance comprises relevant actors from the scientific, economic and public sector from Berlin and Brandenburg. The main objective of the “WIR!” alliance is to implement an innovation strategy “region 4.0” which encompasses the development of innovative value networks in the action fields tourism, agriculture/food and public services/infrastructure within the region of Brandenburg (districts Barnim and Uckermark) and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (former district Uecker-Randow). more

ExTrass seeks to better prepare medium-sized and large cities in Germany for heavy rainfall and heat. To this end, restraining and enabling factors of urban climate adaptation are analysed and successfull measures are identified. A large part of the project work is undertaken in three case study cities: Potsdam, Remscheid and Würzburg. Here, among other things, the project team tests greening measures, works towards climate-sensitive urban planning, contributes data on city climate, educates the population on risks and improves contingency plans. In addition, opportunities for exchange are created so that cities can better learn from each other. more

The joint research project “ReGerecht” funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research aims at developing and implementing solutions for a fair balance of interests between city, suburbs, and rural areas. It seeks to answer two core questions: How do regional land use conflicts arise? And: How can just solutions for these land use conflicts be found? more

Ongoing Qualification Projects

The dissertation project uses interpretive discourse analysis (Hajer 1995, 2005, 2008) to examine the political construction of critical infrastructures. The project analyses definitions, sectors and related discourses around ‘critical infrastructure’, using Sweden and Germany as case studies. The research focuses on the local level, particularly on urban areas that see themselves as ‘smart cities’. The discourses on critical infrastructures and smart cities have developed largely independently of each other. This project will link them together to address the question of criticality on a local level. more

The challenges of the socio-ecological crisis require far-reaching transformation processes, which, in scalar terms, presuppose a change in modes of living both at the micro level (of subjects and practices) and at the macro level (of social structures). This assumption is the starting point for the project that is part of the habilitation process (post-doctoral thesis for senior researchers). The analytical focus is on (de-)politicization processes (especially of the growth paradigm) and conflicts (especially over exnovations). The term exnovation refers to the intended elimination (or dismantling) of practices, products, technologies, and infrastructures. more

This project is part of the so-called German habilitation qualification (post-doctoral thesis for senior researchers). It is about energy spaces, energy transitions and new geographies of energy. more

Completed Third-party Funded Projects