Conceptual Approaches for a Transformative Structural Policy Approach to Strengthen the Regional Environmental Economy in North Rhine-Westphalia

  • Project no.353085
  • Duration 01/2024 - 12/2024

For the state government of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), the promotion of climate protection and the environmental economy is of central importance for the transformation of the local economy towards a so-called green economy. This refers in particular to all companies that contribute to environmental, climate and resource protection through their working methods, products or services. With its nine different regions, NRW has a wide variety of endogenous innovation potential – for example for sustainable agriculture in the Lower Rhine region or a sustainable industrial transformation in the Ruhr area. As incremental innovations are not enough, a far-reaching and timely transformation is therefore of central importance for a resilient, climate and environmentally friendly economy in NRW.

With this in mind, the researchers at the Wuppertal Institute, together with Neue Effizienz and HafenCity University Hamburg, are taking stock of structural policy and the associated development of the environmental economy. In doing so, they are identifying policy levers and potentials in the various regions that will ensure that the speed of transformation is increased. The focus is on the resource and mobility transition as exemplary topics.

The Wuppertal Institute's focus is on the resource transition in NRW. The researchers are creating a broad database through expert interviews and company surveys. The results of the project are detailed profiles of strengths and weaknesses for the various regions as well as recommendations for the further development of North Rhine-Westphalia's structural policy. In addition, the researchers are developing a concrete implementation strategy based on an exemplary region that can be used as a blueprint for other regions.
Together with the project participants, the Wuppertal Institute researchers then derive criteria for pilot projects from best-practice examples. They then combine these with the strengths and weaknesses profiles and use them as the basis for preparing and organising an ideas competition. The aim is to select the ten most promising project outlines that demonstrate a very specific need for support.

The project "Transformative Structural Policy" is funded by the Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Transport of North Rhine-Westphalia as part of the environmental economic strategy.

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