Research subject: Negotiation and governance in local climate policy.
Methodological approach: Document research, interviews with experts*

The "Local Climate Governance" project is still in the pilot stage and is being implemented in cooperation with the Centre for Social Investment and Innovation (CSI) at the University of Heidelberg.

The focus of the study has been placed on the local level, which thereby plays a key role in climate protection. On the one hand, specific climate protection measures are to be negotiated and implemented locally by the local administration and political parties in conjunction with the local population, as those people who will be affected by the measures. On the other hand, a large part of the commitment to climate protection also takes place at the local level. Many of the large environmental organisations such as NABU and BUND have local groups who are involved in these levels and newer initiatives, such as Fridays for Future, also organise themselves locally. In this area, they are involved in specific, defined projects, they seek dialogue with politicians and administrators and participate in committees and meetings. At the local level, the direct negotiation for climate protection takes place with the affected and committed participants. Due to the multitude of involved bodies, people and participants, who are supposed to deal with this subject and want to implement certain aspects, this therefore means that the understanding of effective and future-oriented forms of intersectoral governance, a corresponding culture of politics and administrative action is particularly important in this case - especially when one assumes that the field of local climate governance is currently in something like a so-called start-up phase. That is why we are investigating the question: To what extent have new forms of action, measures and regulations developed in the field of climate policy and which can thereby be summarised under the term intersectoral governance?

As far as the current study is concerned, we will focus on seven large towns in Baden-Württemberg. We hereby assume that the challenges which can also be observed in smaller towns or villages, albeit in less diversity, are reflected there in condensed form.

In an evaluation of documents which are freely available on the Internet and in interviews which have been conducted by ourselves with key people, common characteristics, although also local particularities in two areas are to be recorded and clarified. On the one hand, we would like to look at the development of the participants who are active in local networks, especially within politics and administration and among the organisations and other participants from urban society. On the other hand, the study focuses on forms of cooperation, initially commencing with traditional forms of participation, through various forms of public participation and up to, and including, new forms of stakeholder participation.

You can see the initial findings and developments of the project here.

Research subject: Conditions required for success and obstacles to intersectoral cooperation
Methodological approach: Participant observation and expert interviews

The so-called Amendment Dialogue sets itself the goal of "creating a basis for a new, improved collaboration for the participants and interested parties who come from the fields of agriculture, nature conservation and food retailing in Baden-Württemberg, thereby oriented towards common goals" ( ISoG BW accompanies thereby this process from an intersectoral perspective with the objective for researching the design and the process of the amendment dialogue in its different forms and therfore reflecting on it with the participants.

The research question underlying the case study work is: What are the conditions required for success and which obstacles exist regarding intersectoral cooperation? The following dimensions of intersectoral cooperation are of interest: Process steps and phases, initiation, aim of the cooperation, structure (organisation, network, etc), management and control, mechanisms for conflicts and conflict resolution, power and resources, communication and decision-making capacity, special features, results, successes, and so on.

The results which will be achieved are intended to provide additional, ongoing insights into the conditions for success and obstacles of intersectoral dialogue formats, but also to provide the participants who will be involved in the dialogue process with the opportunity to reflect and possibly improve their collaboration.

Research subject: Link between design decisions and outcome in intersectoral dialogue formats
Methodological approach: Participant observation, expert interviews, document research

Many of the urgent challenges of our future, such as the switch to renewable energies, the mobility revolution, sustainable and socially just construction and housing, climate protection, etc. cannot be mastered by the state or the economy alone. Rather, intersectoral cooperation between the state, the economy and civil society is needed. In order to create this exchange and work together on solutions and innovations, a variety of intersectoral dialogue formats, projects and cooperations have been initiated in Baden-Württemberg by the state government, but private initiatives have also committed themselves to intersectoral exchange through structured dialogue formats. There are already some studies on the design of such intersectoral and cross-sectoral exchange formats, but little is known about how certain design decisions influence the outcome and what further effects result from such formats.

Together with the Ökoinstitut in Freiburg and the Frauenhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research, we would like to close this research gap and explore the relationship between design and outcome.

The project is currently located in the application phase.

Research topic: Conflict lines, hurdles and solution options in intersectoral dialogue formats.
Methodological approach: Participant observation, interviews

The Automotive Industry Strategy Dialogue BW was launched in 2017 with the objective of successfully shaping the future of the automotive industry in Baden-Württemberg by utilising institutionalised, cross-industry cooperation. The focus is thereby placed on intersectoral cooperation with its potential for innovation and transformation.
Through participant observation, we accompanied several dialogue formats with a focus on cooperation processes, the presentation of potential conflict lines, obstacles and hurdles as well as solution options and possibilities. The data which had been collected by the IFOG Institute and the Fraunhofer IAO were supplemented by our results and subsequently jointly developed into a handout. This was presented at a specialist conference of the strategy dialogue on 17 November 2022 in Brussels. The handout "Pulling together - being successful together with employees" can be downloaded here.

Additional expert interviews with interested parties for the dialogue format will complement our results and contribute to the reflection of the participation process in its design and implementation.