BICC: Designing a conflict-sensitive and sustainable energy transition in the MENA region

Energy transitions run deep into the fabric of social relations and require a fundamental change of how societies are built. In this Mena-SELECT Working Paper, the authors first present a theoretical framework to deepen this understanding and then a conceptual approach of how to govern energy transitions in a horizontal and inclusive multi-stakeholder dialogue, based on project insights from Morocco, Jordan and Tunisia.

Energy transitions are more than just a process of replacing one type of electricity generation technology with another and eventually amending some market frameworks to support this switch economically. They are complex problems of social change that unfolds on all levels of society. For societies to achieve their envisioned goals in energy transitions, all policies and initiatives must be harmonized to aim in the same direction of change. To do so, societies must become aware of how energy transitions will impact sociocultural, economic and political relations.

The authors  Maurice Döring, Boris Schinke, Jens Klawitter, Shahrazad Far and Nadejda Komendantova argue in the Working Paper “Designing a conflict-sensitive and sustainable energy transition in the MENA region” that energy transitions inevitably challenge existing power relations and  practices and that energy transitions can only be sustainable and successful, if  the underlying policies can balance the interests of contesting social stakeholder  groups and if the generated benefits to these groups exceed the adverse impacts  they will have to bear from the policies. Only then, energy policies to implement  the energy transition are likely to receive societal support, which is needed to  move forward and to prevent economically, socially and politically costly public  opposition to energy policies. In the Paper, the authors show how a “niche of opportunity” for innovative, horizontal governance approaches was designed and  tested within the framework of the “Middle East and North Africa – Sustainable  ELECtricity Trajectories” (MENA SELECT) project in Morocco, Jordan and Tunisia.

Please find the full text of the MENA SELECT Working Paper “Designing a conflict-sensitive and sustainable energy transition in the MENA region” at:

Source: Announcement Bonn International Center for Conversion (BICC) GmbH, 18.12.2018