Exploring the re-emergence of industrial policy: Perceptions regarding low-carbon energy transitions in Germany, the United Kingdom and Denmark

Phil Johnstone*, Karoline S. Rogge, Paula Kivimaa, Chiara Farné Fratini, Eeva Primmer

*Corresponding author for this work

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    Abstract

    Industrial policy has re-emerged as an area of policy discussion in recent years, but the characteristics and role of industrial policy vary across national contexts. Particularly, the role of industrial policy in the ongoing energy transitions of different countries has received little attention. We introduce an analytical framework to explore the relationship between industrial policy and different energy policy trajectories and apply this framework in an empirical analysis of the perceptions of key stakeholders in the energy sector in Germany, the United Kingdom and Denmark. We identify four key elements of industrial policy – industrial visions, industrial policy instruments, industrial policy governance, and employment concerns – and based on these analyse perceptions of how industrial policy has facilitated changes in the energy system of the three countries. We find significant differences in industrial policy styles for low-carbon transitions, reflecting broader differences in political institutions and cultures. Our analysis shows how sustainability transitions relate to industrial policy, and which elements can act as enablers and barriers to low-carbon transitions.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number101889
    JournalEnergy Research and Social Science
    Volume74
    Number of pages15
    ISSN2214-6296
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2021

    Keywords

    • Industrial policy
    • Energy transition
    • Policy style
    • UK
    • Denmark
    • Germany

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