Within the international climate regime, there is increasing consent that financial and capacity support for developing countries should focus on decisive steps toward a low carbon development paradigm. The Green Climate Fund of the UNFCCC explicitly aims at supporting a "paradigm shift" in the targeted countries. Similarly, the British-German NAMA Facility was designed to fund NAMAs that catalyse "transformational change" towards a low carbon society.
It is as yet unclear how the stated goals of a paradigm shift or transformational change differ from established concepts of sustainability. In support to this question, the Wuppertal Institute conducted a study for GIZ within the BMZ Climate Finance Readiness Programme. The objective is to operationalise the concept of transformational change for development cooperation in the field of climate change mitigation and adaptation. The theory-driven concepts developed in the project were validated in a series of workshops and interviews with development experts in Namibia and Vietnam.
A key milestone is a guidebook for practitioners offering a number of tools and guidelines for capacity development activities towards Transformational Change.
A technical document sketches out possibilities to further operationalise the concepts developed in the guidebook in financing practice.
Some fundamental questions and answers on the topic were elaborated in a theoretical background paper.