The project brings together five research groups working in various disciplines in India, Germany, and the Netherlands. Political scientists, economists, and scientists are investigating how the cooperation between local actors and decision makers in the Indian states functions at the national level as well as at an international level. The researchers will address the issue of which innovations are in place to reduce harmful greenhouse gases at the local level and whether they can be transferred to the national or international level. What might prevent this transfer? What can India and Europe learn from each other in this process? Building on these considerations, the feasibility of knowledge transfer between India and Europe will be assessed, and policy recommendations will be made.
Researchers within the network have been collaborating since October 2012. The project is being funded through 2015 by the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG), the Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR), and the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO). Besides Freie Universität Berlin, the participating universities are Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, TERI University in New Delhi, Jadavpur University, and Pondicherry University. Each of the five research groups is led by a principal investigator. They are Prof. Dr. Miranda Schreurs (FFU, Freie Universität Berlin), Prof. Dr. Frank Biermann (Institute of Environmental Studies, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam), Dr. Arabinda Mishra (TERI University), Prof. Dr. Joyashree Roy (Global Change Programme, Jadavpur University), and Prof. K V Devi Prasad (Department of Ecology & Environmental Science, Pondicherry University).
Prominent scientists and scholars as well as young researchers are part of the international network. They aim to develop theories, collect empirical data, and present their work to each other for discussion. Each year there will be a joint meeting. Following the opening sessions in New Delhi, the next meetings are planned for Amsterdam (2014) and Berlin (2015).
The new network was established as part of the German-Indian Sustainability and Climate Change Dialogue that was set up in 2008. The Dialogue was also initiated by FFU with the aim of promoting sustainable development as a topic in higher education as well as student exchanges between Germany and India. FFU's partner is the Energy and Resource Institute (TERI) in New Delhi. Targeted support for doctoral students and postdoctoral researchers is one of the main goals of both projects.