Ten essentials for action-oriented and second order energy transitions, transformations and climate change research

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

The most critical question for climate research is no longer about the problem, but about how to facilitate the transformative changes necessary to avoid catastrophic climate-induced change. Addressing this question, however, will require massive upscaling of research that can rapidly enhance learning about transformations. Ten essentials for guiding action-oriented transformation and energy research are therefore presented, framed in relation to second-order science. They include: (1) Focus on transformations to low-carbon, resilient living; (2) Focus on solution processes; (3) Focus on ‘how to’ practical knowledge; (4) Approach research as occurring from within the system being intervened; (5) Work with normative aspects; (6) Seek to transcend current thinking; (7) Take a multi-faceted approach to understand and shape change; (8) Acknowledge the value of alternative roles of researchers; (9) Encourage second-order experimentation; and (10) Be reflexive. Joint application of the essentials would create highly adaptive, reflexive, collaborative and impact-oriented research able to enhance capacity to respond to the climate challenge. At present, however, the practice of such approaches is limited and constrained by dominance of other approaches. For wider transformations to low carbon living and energy systems to occur, transformations will therefore also be needed in the way in which knowledge is produced and used.

Details

Authors
  • Ioan Fazey
  • Niko Schäpke
  • Guido Caniglia
  • James Patterson
  • Barbara van Mierlo
  • Arnim Wiek
  • Julia Wittmayer
  • Paulina Aldunce
  • Husam Al Waer
  • Nandini Battacharya
  • Hilary Bradbury
  • Esther Carmen
  • John Colvin
  • Christopher Cvitanovic
  • Marcella D'Souza
  • Maja Gopel
  • Bruce Goldstein
  • Timo Hämäläinen
  • Gavin Harper
  • Tom Henfry
  • Anthony Hodgson
  • Mark S. Howden
  • Andy Kerr
  • Matthias Klaes
  • Christopher Lyon
  • Gerald Midgley
  • Susanne Moser
  • Nandan Mukherjee
  • Karl Müller
  • Karen O'Brien
  • Deborah A. O'Connell
  • Per Olsson
  • Glenn Page
  • Mark S. Reed
  • Beverley Searle
  • Giorgia Silvestri
  • Viktoria Spaiser
  • Tim Strasser
  • Petra Tschakert
  • Natalia Uribe-Calvo
  • Steve Waddell
  • Jennifer Rao-Williams
  • Russell Wise
  • Ruth Wolstenholme
  • Mel Woods
  • Carina Wyborn
Organisations
External organisations
  • Leuphana University Lüneburg
  • Wageningen University
  • Arizona State University
  • Erasmus University Rotterdam
  • University of Chile
  • Chalmers University of Technology
  • Emerald Network Ltd
  • University of Tasmania
  • Watershed Organisation Trust (WOTR)
  • German Advisory Council on Global Change
  • University of Colorado
  • SITRA
  • University of Birmingham
  • Schumacher Institute
  • University of Lisbon
  • International Futures Forum
  • Australian National University
  • University of Edinburgh
  • University of Buckingham
  • University of Hull
  • Susanne Moser Research and Consulting
  • Stanford University
  • Steinbeis Transfer Center New Cybernetics
  • University of Oslo
  • CSIRO Energy Flagship
  • Stockholm University
  • SustainaMetrix LLC
  • University of Newcastle upon Tyne
  • University of Leeds
  • Maastricht University
  • University of Western Australia, Crawley
  • EUCO SAS
  • GOLDEN Ecosystems Labs
  • CSIRO Land & Water Flagship
  • Sniffer
  • WWF International
  • University of Dundee
  • Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
  • Ninewells Hospital and Medical School
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Social Sciences Interdisciplinary

Keywords

  • Action research, Sustainability, Sustainability transitions, Transdisciplinarity
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)54-70
Number of pages17
JournalEnergy Research and Social Science
Volume40
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jun 1
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes