Low-carbon strategies towards 2050: comparing ex-ante policy evaluation studies and national planning processes in Europe

van Sluisveld, Mariësse A E, Hof, Andries F, van Vuuren, Detlef P, Boot, Pieter, Criqui, Patrick, Matthes, Felix C, Notenboom, Jos, Pedersen, Sigurd L, Pfluger, Benjamin and Watson, Jim (2017) Low-carbon strategies towards 2050: comparing ex-ante policy evaluation studies and national planning processes in Europe. Environmental Science & Policy, 78. pp. 89-96. ISSN 1462-9011

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Both the European Union (EU) and the Member States individually use techno-economic modelling studies to analytically underpin the ex-ante policy evaluation of proposed low-carbon strategies. As these studies vary in depth, focus, and degree of embedment into policy design, we systematically look into the differences by comparing the long-term perspectives toward 2050 for five EU countries (respectively Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom). The study draws out insights on how ex-ante policy evaluation efforts are mobilised and whether the national approaches are consistent with the long-term European policy objectives for 2050. The comparative analysis consists of a qualitative comparison of (1) the governance of ex-ante policy evaluation in long-term policy planning processes, (2) the distribution of knowledge and skills for ex-ante policy evaluation, and (3) the inclusion of (public) stakeholders. In a second step we conduct a quantitative comparison of national model-based ex-ante policy evaluation studies by assessing (1) their alignment to communicated long-term ambitions and (2) the relative differences. We find a high diversity in national configurations on planning towards 2050, for instance regarding the degree of institutional embedding (e.g. by the presence or lack thereof of climate regulations and monitoring and advising organisations) and the distribution and utilisation of model-based ex-ante policy evaluation efforts. Interestingly, while the national ex-ante policy evaluation studies provided insights into the required domestic action, very little attention was given to the alignment of domestic policies with European or global mitigation ambitions. This study concludes with several areas in which ex-ante policy evaluation could be strengthened.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit
Subjects: H Social Sciences
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Depositing User: Joy Blake
Date Deposited: 26 Oct 2017 10:50
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2019 17:18
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/70676

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