The objectives of the Paris Climate Treaty, including the achievement of the 2-degree objective, require a massive transformation of our (economic and social) systems within this century. An exit from fossil energy sources and the development of a climate-friendly economy imply a far-reaching transformation of our central infrastructure towards resource-saving and climate-dependent systems on which human societies and the functioning of a social system are based. At the same time, the fundamental demand remains that infrastructure be resilient in order to guarantee security of supply and to guarantee public services. In this respect, the design of the technical functionality of our infrastructure significantly influences the type of services provided, thus influencing human activities and energy flows to a considerable extent.
A systematic approach is therefore required to evaluate the entire material infrastructure (transport/mobility, buildings, communication, material supply and disposal, energy supply, etc.) and institutional infrastructure (legal system, social system, economic system), as well as socio-political objectives in terms of climate resilience and sustainability. Only in this way can we lay the foundation from which measures for the necessary transformation of our infrastructure and their social functions can be developed.
The aim of the project was to analyse leading research in the EU (national and transnational) at European level. The focus was on energy, transport, water and ICT infrastructure. The core questions of this project were:
- Who are the important clients and beneficiaries of research in Europe?
- Who are the central researchers/research groups in Europe?
- What are innovative, exciting research topics and relevant research results for Europe and Germany?
- How relevant is the research to implementation?