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Publications – Ecologic Institute EU

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Circular economy und Nachhaltigkeitsinnovationen

Forschungsergebnisse mit der Praxis diskutieren
While circular processes offer potential for small and large companies, such processes are not (yet) established across the board. For circular processes to be applied widespread, exchange between science and companies must be improved. As part of an national research project funding scheme on the sustainable economy, three workshops were dedicated to businesses and science actors to exchange information on sustainability innovations along value chains. This German paper summarises experiences made and lessons learned from these workshops.Read more

Contribution to the 2020 Roadmap Consultation on the Farm to Fork Strategy

Position paper on the EU "Farm to Fork" Strategy
In this position paper the Ecologic Institute, the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP), the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) and the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI) submitted a contribution to the EU Commission's roadmap consultation on the Farm to Fork strategy. The strategy is expected to be finalized until 29 April 2020 and will have an impact on the future Common agricultural policy. The position paper identifies the needs for the strategy and gives policy recommendations.Read more

Europäisches Klimaschutzgesetz – Großer Schritt für die Menschen in Europa?

9th episode of "Knowledge for Future – The Environment Podcast"
The EU is to be climate-neutral by 2050. In March 2020, the European Commission presented its draft law, which for the first time legally anchors the goal of climate neutrality. This is a milestone in climate protection policy. Ursula von der Leyen even compared this goal with the moon landing.Read more

Enhancing the Capacity of Water Governance to Deal with Complex Management Challenges

A framework of analysis
Despite numerous efforts to promote and implement more integrated approaches, coordination problems persist and impede sustainable water governance and management. This paper introduces a framework for guiding a transdisciplinary diagnostic approach (i.e. a context-sensitive assessment of multi-level water governance, which is combined with a change management process) to address such coordination problems. The approach aims at addressing some of the challenges identified in scientific scholarship and water governance practice by combining context-specific participatory assessments of individual cases with comparative case analysis guided by a generic conceptual framework. Read more
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Steps for Defining and Assessing Ecological Potential for Improving Comparability of Heavily Modified Water Bodies

Guidance Document No. 37
The CIS Guidance Document No. 37 proposes a common practical framework for defining the good ecological potential which is the environmental objective of heavily modified water bodies designated under the Water Framework Directive (WFD). The Guidance aims to assist the comparability of approaches between Member States. Its recommendations are based on a common understanding of the WFD requirements on this topic and good practice for implementation developed within the Common Implementation Strategy (CIS) of the WFD.Read more

Sieben auf einen Streich

Regionale Ernährungsstrategien als Schlüssel für eine nachhaltigere Stadt-Umland-Kooperation
The German article "Seven at one blow! Regional Food Strategies as key to more sustainable Urban-Rural cooperations" deals with the role of regional food strategies as a promising approach for an integrated, sustainable development of urban and rural areas. The article, written by Stephanie Wunder, Coordinator Food Systems at the Ecologic Institute and Franziska Wolff, Head of Environmental Law & Governance at Öko-Institut summarizes the results of the UBA project "Rural Urban Nexus", led by Ecologic Institute. The text is part of "The Critical Agricultural Report". Since 1993 "Der kritische Agrarbericht" is an annually published flagship book, that critically reflects about agriculture in Germany in the context of the EU Common Agricultural Policy. The 2020 edition focused on the changing relationship between rural and urban areas. Read more

Forschung trifft auf Praxis: Und was kommt dabei raus?

8th episode of "Knowledge for Future – The Environment Podcast"
If science provides the right impulses, completely new ideas can emerge in practice. The last episode of the environmental podcast "Knowledge for Future" dealt with the importance of transdisciplinary research, in particular with the synergies and challenges that can arise when research and companies work together. This episode focuses on two concrete examples of such synergetic cooperations: sustainability within the food and fashion industry.Read more

International Governance for Environmentally Sound Supply of Raw Materials – Policy Options and Recommendations

Final Report
This research report of the Ecologic Institute addresses how Germany can contribute, through international governance, to reduce the environmental impacts of mining activities outside its territory. It provides a stocktake of existing governance approaches at the international level or with transboundary effect. It then develops specific policy options and recommendations for the German federal government to strengthen international governance for an environmentally sound supply of raw materials.Read more

Climate Laws in Europe

Good Practices in Net-Zero Management
No two climate laws are the same, but an analysis of nine existing laws in Europe finds that most draw on a set of common design elements to streamline action, align policy goals, establish expert and public review mechanisms and monitor progress towards national climate goals. The assessment of the existing national legislation highlights good practices and also identifies several improvements to European climate governance that could be made via the pending EU climate law. Read more

Multiple Pressures and their Combined Effects in Europe's Seas

ETC/ICM Technical Report 4/2019
This report presents for the first time an overview of anthropogenic pressures and their combined effects on Europe's seas. The assessment covers the period of 2011 to 2016 and presents how human activities and pressures on seas have changed over a longer time horizon. The highest potential combined effects are found along coastal areas of the North Sea, Southern Baltic Sea, Adriatic and Western Mediterranean. However, there are also positive developments and the report points to improvements in nutrient levels, hazardous substances and northern fish and tuna stocks.Read more

Transdisziplinäre Forschung: Und in der Praxis?

7th episode of "Knowledge for Future – The Environment Podcast"
The seventh episode of the environmental podcast "Knowledge for Future" is about transdisciplinary research. The focus is primarily on cooperation between research and private sector companies. What does this cooperation look like in practice? What advantages can be gained and what challenges need to be overcome?Read more

Das Bundes-Klimaschutzgesetz

Dr. Stephan Sina, Senior Fellow at Ecologic Legal, has published an article on the Federal Climate Protection Act in the first edition of this year's Neue Zeitschrift für Verwaltungsrecht (NVwZ). The contribution is a joint effort by several authors, two of them officials at the Federal Ministry of the Environment, Nature Protection and Nuclear Safety (BMU) who have worked on the Climate Protection Act. The article presents the main elements of the new law and discusses its legal and practical impact. It can be obtained via the website of the NVwZ.Read more

Klimapolitik trennt Europa nicht

Public opinion seems to have settled on the conviction that the climate crisis is Europe's latest political divide - after migration, the Euro and conflicts over the rule of law. But there is another story that needs to be told. Climate policies have always been contentious. They are bound to be. But contrary to the growing perception of climate policies as Europe's new political divide, climate is a policy field where Europe works together, writes Nils Meyer-Ohlendorf in the Tagesspiegel.Read more

Nachhaltige Ernährungssysteme in Zeiten von Urbanisierung und globaler Ressourcenknappheit

Herausforderungen und Handlungsmöglichkeiten
This working paper identifies the main overarching trends affecting the food supply system, sets out the environmental and socio-economic implications of spatial decoupling of food production, consumption and disposal, and addresses the particular role of urbanisation in changing supply systems. The effects in industrialised and developing countries are considered in equal measure. Read more

Regionale Ernährungssysteme und nachhaltige Landnutzung im Stadt-Land-Nexus

This study shows that a commitment to a regional food policy promises positive effects in a whole range of policy areas, including environmental protection, sustainable land use, health, strengthening local value chains, education, and participation. Regional food policy in Germany requires the establishment of new structures and can only succeed if administrations work together across disciplines and sectors, if there is cooperation between the city and its environs and if it is shaped in a participatory process together with all the actors concerned. Due to the high media interest and the mobilisation potential that the topic of nutrition has to offer, it might be easier to set up these processes compared to many other topics.Read more

Rural Urban Nexus – Globale Landnutzung und Urbanisierung

Integrierte Ansätze für eine nachhaltige Stadt-Land-Entwicklung
The report "Integrated approaches for sustainable urban-rural development" published by the German Federal Environment Agency at the end of 2019 summarizes the results of the three-year research project "Rural Urban Nexus – Global Land Use and Urbanization" (RUN). The findings of the project, that was led by Ecologic Institute, show that there is already a wide range of strategic approaches, instruments and institutional forms for better collaboration between cities and their surrounding areas. Rather than establishing new instruments, administrations and policy makers should make greater use of existing possibilities – especially informal instruments of regional planning – and to integrate sustainable urban and peri-urban development into existing policies. In particular, the development of regional food strategies can be an important entry point and catalyst for achieving sustainable urban rural development.Read more

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