Against the background of processes related to climate change that take place and unfold not in uniform but rather in fragmented ways (e.g., ecological, socio-economic, political, regional), this research project aims at the following three goals:
1. To elaborate the basic requirements for integrated transformation strategies directed towards mitigation and adaptation of climate change which meet criteria of reflexive and adaptive governance and are pursued in accordance with the climate change scenarios for Austria in the year 2050;
2. To assess—on the basis of exemplary case studies—the strengths and weaknesses of Austrian climate policy and governance and, based on these lessons, to evaluate potential transformation paths for two selected sectors, together with positive or negative cross-sectoral interrelationships;
3. To outline key elements that help improve climate strategy development in Austria (e.g., tools and procedures which have been derived from lessons learned, best practises and existing and emerging capacities) in order to better design and implement an effective transformation strategy.
In order to address these goals, the project design encompasses six work packages (WP), together with a requisite methodology. The research proposed will generate insights regarding
• Requirements for both a future carbon-neutral society and integrated transformation strategies (WP1);
• Adaptive pressures to Austria resulting from climate change scenarios 2050 (WP2);
• Strength and weaknesses of Austrian climate policy to date (WP3);
• Transformation pathways for two selected case studies (energy and land use) (WP4);
• Options for reflexive and adaptive governance in support of integrated transformation strategies (WP5); and the
• Integration and dissemination of research results (WP6).