SOKO Energiewende

Socio-political consequences of the energy transition process in Germany (SOKO Energiewende)

Duration: August 2013 until December 2016

Project coordination: Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) Mannheim 

Cooperation partners: University of Kassel (Chair of Empirical Economic Research), Catholic University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt, Heidelberg University, University of Bayreuth

Funding institution: Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), funding priority "Environmentally and Socially Compatible Transformation of the Energy System" ("Umwelt- und gesellschaftsverträgliche Transformation des Energiesystems") 

Summary: The energy concepts resolved by the Federal Government target at the transformation of the energy systems in Germany and comprise a severe reduction of greenhouse gas emissions as well as a fast withdrawal from the nuclear energy program. The expansion of renewable energies and a significant increase of energy efficiency are seen as key to decrease greenhouse gas emissions. A set of political instruments are aimed to ensure the achievement of these goals. These include, besides the European emission trading scheme, particularly the promotion of renewable energies under the rule of the national Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG). At least temporarily, an increase of energy costs is expected due to the energy transition process.

The objective of this project was the identification of critical interactions between energy and social policies. Besides economic analyses of distribution effects of the German energy policy, an important part of the project focuses on fairness and acceptance issues as well as potential consequences for the state and society, such as the increasing share of energy costs (electricity and heating) in the total costs of private households. Against this background, this project also empirically examined general perceptions of private households towards energy price trends and distribution effects due to the energy transition process as well as their attitudes towards different compensation measures.

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Publications and papers:

Groh, Elke D. and Charlotte von Möllendorff (2020), What shapes the support of renewable energy expansion? Public attitudes between policy goals and risk, time, and social preferences, Energy Policy 137

Ziegler, Andreas (2019), The relevance of attitudinal factors for the acceptance of energy policy measures: A micro-econometric analysis, Ecological Economics 157, 129-140

Groh, Elke D. and Andreas Ziegler (2018), On self-interested preferences for burden sharing rules: An econometrics analysis for the costs of energy policy measures, Energy Economics 74, 417-426

Groh, Elke D. and Andreas Ziegler (2020), On self-interested preferences for sharing the costs of energy policy: A stated choice analysis for Germany (working title)

Simixhiu, Amantia and Andreas Ziegler (2020), On the relevance of income perceptions and behavioral factors for donations (working title)

Contact: Elke D. Groh (