Gender Matters: Women, Renewable Energy, and Citizen Participation in Germany


Fraune, Cornelia. 2015. “Gender Matters: Women, Renewable Energy, and Citizen Participation in Germany.” Energy Research & Social Science 7: 55–65.

Author: Cornelia Fraune


This study investigates how the larger social, cultural, and political context fosters and constrains citizens’ agency to take part in citizen participation schemes in renewable electricity production (RES-E). Based on a comprehensive review of research on gender and energy, hypotheses about gender differences in involvement in citizen participation schemes in RES-E are derived. These are tested statistically on the basis of data gathered in the context of a pilot study. The results reveal differences between women and men in the average ownership rate of citizen participation schemes, the average investment sum and decision-making bodies. In contrast, findings on gender differences in the amount of capital assets invested per capita are inconclusive. This study gives an indication that beyond individual preferences and investment attitudes, cultural, social and political factors also influence an individual’s agency to participate in RES-E operated by citizens’ associations.

Keywords: energy transformation, citizen participation schemes, renewable energy, production, gender, social context

Topics: Gender, Governance, Households, Infrastructure, Energy Regions: Europe, Central Europe Countries: Germany

Year: 2015

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