Designing industrial strategy for a low carbon transformation

Produced as part of the Enabling rapid transitions in mitigation and adaptation CCCEP research programme theme

The recent re-emergence of industrial policy as a legitimate pursuit of governments in Europe and the US has the potential to open up a new realm of policy action for climate change mitigation. This would aim to align efforts to secure national industrial opportunities with the development of low carbon industrial systems, in order to generate both socioeconomic and environmental benefits.

This paper discusses the role of low carbon industrial strategy in seeking to do this, thereby accelerating transitions to a low carbon economy. It sets out the elements of a more systemic low carbon industrial strategy, including providing a mission-oriented and learning-based approach, drawing on and combining insights from neo-Schumpeterian and ecological economics perspectives. The benefits for countries of implementing such a strategy are discussed, including informing approaches to analysing low carbon industrial development and assessing the effectiveness of low carbon industrial policies and policy mixes.