Green Economy (Environment, Energy, Transport, Biodiversity)
UNEP defines Green Economy as ‘one that results in improved human well-being and social equity, while significantly reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities.’ This definition makes it visible to distinguish between mere symbolic ‘Green Washing’ and serious attempts towards a transformation of the economy. The development of various physical infrastructures has long been regarded as a precondition for the economic development of countries and regions. More recently, however, a more differentiated picture has emerged; the extension of certain physical infrastructures, such as transport or electricity networks, may cause damage to the environment and give rise to social concerns. Moreover, infrastructure provision in itself is no guarantee for efficiency or quality improvements unless it is embedded in a broader policy framework, taking into account the sector as a whole and its interrelation with further reaching social, environmental and economic goals. Obviously, the transformation process towards a low- and no-carbon economy necessitates the inclusion of all stakeholders.
The ICCR integrates sectoral analysis in the fields of transport, electricity, water, postal services and telecommunications in research on sustainable development. This broad range of activities across sectors focuses on policy-making and policy contents in the European Union with a special emphasis on the social, environmental and economic consequences of recent trends in infrastructure sectors, such as liberalization/deregulation. Furthermore, the ICCR analyzes the societal responses to environmental change by investigating the actions, reactions and strategies of different actors.