Climate Policy

The department at a glance.

Research profile

The Climate Policy Department assess with empirical and theoretical methods, past experiences and future design options of policy instruments for energy transition in Germany and Europe, as well as how the transition to a sustainable and climate-friendly industry system can be implemented

For this purpose, the department analyses and compares the national implementations of regulatory frameworks and supports decision makers in designing policies to reach the common targets of sustainability, competitiveness and security of supply. We transfer the new perspectives resulting from the low-carbon transformation to our academic work in the areas of energy economics, industrial economics and theory of regulation.

Our research methods cover quantitative and qualitative analyses, modelling and assessments of trade-offs. Our research approach is to ensure robustness and relevance of analysis, with early stakeholder engagement, separate review of methodology and sector expertise, as well as a cooperation within an international expert network. Given the short historical track record of many instruments that are analysed, cross-country comparisons receive particular attention.

Focus area "Power Market & Renewable Energies"

In the electricity sector, the implementation of the third EU package for the internal energy market had to be completed by 2014. It could be already seen that further steps were needed to ensure that the electricity market offers the flexibility that is necessary for an effective integration of renewable energies. Here, analyses are carried out in close cooperation with national and European regulators and system operators. Instruments to promote renewable energies are analysed and modelled. Further questions concern the conditions for investments in production, storage and networks. Based on modelling the development in European emissions trading, policy proposals for backloading and structural reform are evaluated.

Focus area "Energy Efficiency in the Building Sector"

To encourage investment in energy efficiency in buildings, different national and European Union financial support mechanisms for energy retrofits are evaluated and the interactions with information, guidance and training programs as well as efficiency standards are analysed. The macroeconomic impact of energy efficiency policies in the housing sector is investigated in cooperation with the department of Forecasting and Economic Policy. In cooperation with ista Germany GmbH, a leading energy billing service company, the department develops annually the “Wärmemonitor” to inform about energy use and cost in Germany and in its regions, exploring energy consumption data of 3 million apartments.

Focus area "Low-Carbon Development of the Industry Sector"

The sectoral roadmaps of the eEnergy intensive industries have developed sectoral roadmaps outlineing investment opportunities in energy efficiency, new production processes and materials in order to make significant contributions to European Union emission reduction objectives. The department is assessing the progress in realizing these such opportunities and the success of different policy instruments to date and analysing what policy mix will be required for further progress. To this end, the department is leading projects with the European research network Climate Strategies on: empirical evaluations of energy intensive sectors; a model comparison exercise of the European Union Emission Trading System; and on different reform options currently discussed at the European Union level. 


Berlin Seminar on Energy and Climate Policy