Synergies between environmental and social policy

On behalf of the German Federal Environmental Agency (UBA) we are exploring the synergies arising from environmental and social policy. The objective is to develop strategies to enable better exploitation of these synergies and communicate them more effectively to the public. 

Research approach 

The project illustrates social benefits of environmental policies and measures through examples, focusing on the use of household energy, mobility and urban green spaces. ISOE is in charge of coordinating and managing the project.

Evaluation and documentation

The scientists evaluate material relevant to the socio-economic analysis of resource-preserving behaviour and lifestyles such as measures to lower the burden of energy costs for private households. The project team documents measures by local authorities and companies that make targeted use of the synergies existing between environmental and social policy.

Overview and guideline

Furthermore, the team compiles an overview of environmentally relevant sustainability concepts and initiatives in the social and cultural sector to see whether they really do serve the widespread introduction of sustainable lifestyles into cultures and societies. This is the point of departure for preparing proposals on how to take such contributions further. The results are documented in a guideline for sustainable ways of life in order to demonstrate and help communicate the options open to private households when it comes to acting in an energy-efficient and more eco-friendly way. The guideline works with various lifestyle types under different socio-economic conditions. It is targeted towards stakeholders from environmental and social organisations/initiatives.


Up until now, insufficient attention has been given to the very positive impact that environmental protection measures exert on health, social and education policy. Some examples of this are tenants being spared the burden of high overheads in the long term, a reduction in environment-driven health hazards, and lower health care costs. Groups on low incomes, in particular, barely notice the contribution that environmental policy makes towards improving quality of life and living conditions. In addition, players in the environment, social and cultural sectors are still inadequately networked.


Institute for Ecological Economy Research (IÖW)


The project “Synergies between environmental and social policy” is commissioned by the Federal Environment Agency (Umweltbundesamt, UBA)


2010/11 – 2010/11

Contact person

 +49 69 7076919-19

Project team