What do cities have to learn from each other about the best tools to get to 100% renewable city-wide electricity?

Image: Pinwheel Al3xanderD (Pixabay) under Pixabay Licence

Project leader(s)

Globally, many national governments such as those in Australia and the USA are reluctant to take meaningful action on climate change. However, cities in these and other countries are stepping up to fill this gap, and committing to meaningful emissions reductions to limit harmful warming.

Yet, the question of which city-level policies are most effective to implement remains an open research question, in part because cities need to “localize” policies implemented by their neighbours, and in part due to challenges assessing outcomes of implemented policies. This project aims to identify key actor linkages and structural barriers that shape the type of policy tools that cities are able to implement in the sustainability space, and how the policy tools used work alongside these linkages and barriers to shape project outcomes and pathways to wider impact. We will focus on cities that have set targets to achieve 100% equivalent renewable energy supply city-wide, and will evaluate what shapes policy tool choice and how tool choice in turn shapes policy outcomes.

The objective of this project is to produce recommendations for sustainably-inclined city governments, specifically being able to recommend categories of policy tools that are most likely to achieve desired outcomes in face of local linkages and barriers. This project is intended as a step toward making transfer of local learning about policy tools more systematic.


  • Professor Xuemei Bai, Urban Environment and Human Ecology, Fenner School of Environment and Society

  • Yuan Peng, PhD Candidate, Fenner School of Environment and Society

Image: Pinwheel Al3xanderD (Pixabay) under Pixabay Licence

Dr Lee White

Dr Lee White

Fellow with the Zero Carbon Energy for the Asia-Pacific Grand Challenge

Dr Lee White is a Fellow with the Zero Carbon Energy in the Asia Pacific Grand Challenge program. She earned her PhD...

Climate, energy & the environment cluster

Climate, energy and the environment

This cluster has four broad regulatory and governance research themes: identifying obstacles and options for effective energy governance; analysing state and private governance mechanisms for mitigating climate change; examining the opportunities and constraints of the green economy in transforming infrastructure and urban development; and exploring creative regulatory solutions to transnational environmental problems.

Updated:  10 August 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director, RegNet/Page Contact:  Director, RegNet