The transformation process of the German energy transition describes a veritable system change, which has revealed a number of structural conflicts in the past and is marked by a high degree of uncertainty. Among the key challenges are first, the (infrastructural) system transition towards a decentralized energy architecture and second, the safe, economical and environmentally compatible supply of volatile renewable energy. The regional initiative "Energieavantgarde Anhalt" seeks to build a regional, decentralized energy system and thus plays a pioneering role in the realization of the energy policy objectives towards a post-fossil future.
The social scientific accompanying research through the WZB Research Group Science Policy Studies directs their focus on the constitution and the development process of the partner network as well as on the heterogeneous groups of actors and constellations involved in the process, consisting of representatives from business, politics, science, public administration and civil society. The research focuses on the relevant stocks of knowledge and modes of production, in terms of a ‘co-production of knowledge’, as well as on the particular behavior settings and action dispositions. It will be investigated to what extent decentralization may function as a participatory process.
The findings provide a new contribution to the science, innovation and transformation research. Complex and systemic innovation processes - particularly in fields of knowledge that are characterized by uncertainty – are illuminated and thereby typical obstacles of knowledge transfer in heterogeneous actor constellations can be identified. It should be clarified how similar innovation processes can be adequately organized and which modes of scientific quality management are used. The results are incorporated into an ideal type and transferable model that can be applied in further spatial contexts.