Ensuring the well-being of current and future generations without transgressing environmental limits is an overarching objective of the concept of the sustainable bioeconomy. Achieving this objective will require major transformations of existing resource systems, value networks, business models, infrastructures and governance systems. The recent decision of the German government to phase-out coal mining will initiate major transition processes in the lignite mining region, the Rheinische Revier, creating a unique opportunity for understanding the socio-technical dynamics and implementation options towards an entire sustainable bioeconomy region.
Against this background, Transform2Bio aims to systematically identify transformation trajectories for the implementation of a bioeconomy in the Rheinische Revier. These transformation routes need to be, at the same time, (a) desirable (from a sustainability perspective), (b) feasible (from a techno-economic perspective), and (c) acceptable (from a stakeholder consensus perspective). Pooling expertise from (agricultural) economics, operations and innovation management, entrepreneurship, political science, economic development, consumer psychology and socio-technical systems analysis, the research approach of Transform2Bio follows the inter- and transdisciplinary sustainability research agenda integrating orientation, system, and transformation knowledge. As part of this multi-dimensional approach, Transform2Bio will establish an interactive stakeholder network, the Stakes2Bio Lab. It will provide the room both for continuous stakeholder dialogue (‘society to science’) and the establishment of regional ‘science to society’ networks. These will provide bioeconomy implementation options based on cutting-edge scientific research which can be readily tested against ‘real world’ stakeholder settings. In this regard, Transform2Bio also provides the crucial basis for the BioSC FocusLabs to readily reflect their concepts and potential products against ‘real stakeholder responses’ and with respect to their complementarity with expected transformation trajectories.
What is the relevance for bioeconomy?
The widespread implementation of the bioeconomy will be strongly driven by the introduction of both biobased substitute and novel products and production processes (including those developed in the FocusLabs). However, this transformation will likely implicate also radical technological innovations, which may disrupt existent business models and entire industry logics, as well as innovations in social processes, governance processes, and individual decision-making. Considering such stakeholder dynamics, their underlying motivations as well as their effects, the impending, large-scale structural change process in the Rheinische Revier provides a unique opportunity for developing options to implement important structural and institutional foundations within a regionalization approach towards a sustainable bioeconomy in an entire region. The project is funded over a period of three years.
Dr. Sandra Venghaus
Institute for Energy and Climate Research
Department Systems Analysis and Technology Evaluation (IEK-STE)
01.09.2019 – 31.08.2022
The total budget of Transform2Bio is € 2.399.949. Transform2Bio is part of the NRW-Strategieprojekt BioSC and thus funded by the Ministry of Culture and Science of the German State of North Rhine-Westphalia.
Prof. Dr. Jan Börner, ILR – Economics of Sustainable Land Use and Bioeconomy, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Prof. Joachim von Braun, ZEF - Economic and Technological Change, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
PD Dr. Wolfgang Britz, ILR - Economic Modeling of Agricultural Systems Group, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Prof. Dr. Stefanie Bröring, ILR – Technology and Innovation Management in Agribusi-ness (TIM), Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Prof. Jürgen-Fr. Hake (em.), Dr. Wilhelm Kuckshinrichs, IEK-STE – Systems Analysis and Technology Evaluation, Forschungszentrum Jülich
Prof. Dr. Monika Hartmann, ILR – Chair of Agricultural and Food Market Research, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Prof. Dr. Thomas Heckelei, ILR – Chair of Economic and Agricultural Policy, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Prof. Dr. Silke Hüttel, ILR – Chair of Production Economics, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Prof. Dr. Ulrich Schurr, IBG-2 – Plant Sciences, Forschungszentrum Jülich
Prof. Dr. Grit Walther, OM – Chair of Operations Management, RWTH Aachen