April 2022

ZOE Institute for Future-fit Economies is pleased to share the third edition of its newsletter, the Future-fit Economies Update. Below you will find a collection of the latest policy updates, key developments, and a roundup of relevant resources.

Key developments

  • In our latest policy paper, “Demand-side solutions to address energy shortages”, we have outlined how the EU can achieve energy sovereignty through demand-side measures. You can find our policy paper that sets out recommendations for national as well EU-level measures to increase energy savings here. The policy paper highlights the potential of demand-side policies to ensure energy security in the European transport and housing sectors. The uncertainty about the European energy supply is aggravating a dramatic rise in record-high energy prices. The rising energy prices put European households at risk of energy and transport poverty simultaneously. On 8 March, the European Commission announced a draft REPowerEU plan that responds to surging energy prices. On 18 May, the European Commission will present its REPowerEU plan to reduce the European Union’s energy dependence on Russia through joint European action.


  • To ensure fair and just policy ideas become reality, ZOE has been bringing together policymakers and mapping out policy pathways towards 1.5°C Lifestyles. We recently launched our new website entirely dedicated to the 1.5°C Lifestyles project. You will now be able to navigate through messaging and framing ideas, research insights for policymaking, stories and best practices by experts and partners, as well as ZOE's policy recommendations and solutions exploring the areas of food, housing and mobility, in line with a 1.5-degree scenario. The recent IPCC report highlights that demand-side measures are key elements of 1.5°C pathways. The report notes that lifestyle choices lowering the demand for energy and land can further support the achievement of 1.5°C pathways. The report argues that demand-side measures and lifestyle choices that limit energy, resource, and GHG-intensive food demand support sustainable development. 


  • Under the 8th Environment Action Programme regulation, the European Commission is mandated to develop a set of indicators to measure economic, environmental, and social progress “beyond GDP”. To discuss how the concepts and tools of Doughnut Economics are relevant to the work of the Commission, ZOE Institute and the European Commission co-hosted a 2-hour webinar, ‘Doughnut Economics: an update for policymakers’ on 10 March. The online event gathered more than 250 participants for a session under the hospice of Director General of DG R&I, Jean-Eric Paquet, and closing remarks by Deputy Director-General of DG MOVE, Matthew Baldwin. Kate Raworth, the author of Doughnut Economics, introduced the principles of the Doughnut and the many ways in which it is relevant to the work of the Commission. You can watch the recorded version of the webinar here.  


ZOE Announcements

  • Dealing with climate change is a complex challenge that requires capabilities and skills that go beyond linear thinking and reasoning. This is where leadership training comes in. Between April and June 2022, ZOE Institute is offering leadership training for EU officials to navigate the complexity of the 1.5-degree transition pathways. The training is developed and held by trainers from ZOE Institute in cooperation with the experienced sustainable leadership practitioner Kurt Klusch and the leading climate psychologist Renée Lertzman. Click here for a detailed outline of the training.  


  • The Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management of the Netherlands is working to incorporate a wellbeing approach into policyZOE Institute published a report that responds to the growing momentum within the Dutch ministry to incorporate wellbeing policies. The report aims to provide an overview of specific cases of implementation of a wellbeing approach and reflecton lessons learned from these approaches to support the Ministry in its journey. You can access the full report here.

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