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Convergence in European Climate Policy and Governance - Lessons from Germany and Poland

Completed Project


Climate Policy

Project Management

Karsten Neuhoff

Project Period

January 1 - December 31, 2013

Commissioned by

Mercator Stiftung

In Cooperation With

Hertie School of Governance
German Institute for International and Security Affairs (Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik - SWP)

The project is conducted under the banner of the 2013 Dahrendorf Symposium, Working Group 2 "Governance and Policy Aspects of Climate Change".

In the uncertain post-Kyoto climate policy arrangement, the role of the EU as a driving force of climate change mitigation efforts seems to be gaining importance. But the common EU climate and energy policy, even though defined on a European level, is driven and to a large extent executed nationally. Hence the national circumstances are a key factor to agree for a unified EU approach. Within the EU itself, there is no unanimity regarding the ways of tackling climate change. The project looks at the German-Polish relationship, comparing the two countries' domestic policies as well as assessing their neighborly cooperation. Having gone through a process of political reconciliation, Germany and Poland have closely linked economies and are effective partners in many policy domains. All the more striking are the difficulties to find a common ground and pragmatic compromises on energy and climate.

Research in the project is focused on three issue areas: renewables, energy efficiency (in the building sector), and energy infrastructure (electricity grids). The project seeks to sketch the domestic institutional and legal background in these areas, and identify the possible policy improvements, emphasizing the need for bilateral, transnational cooperation. It also asks if and what are the lessons to be learned by both sides in the different issue areas. The analysis is kept close to the current political debate, and feedback from different stakeholders (German, Polish, governmental, industrial and non-governmental) is to be included from the early stages of research.

DIW Team