26.01.2017 31.12.2022
Application Phase
Selection phase
Funding phase

Transformations to Sustainability

How can food supply, energy systems and urban digital infrastructures develop sustainably? How can water industries be sustainably managed and flood risk in urban areas better be tackled? What is the role of intellectual property rights to accelerate sustainability transitions? Twelve research teams from a wide variety of disciplines working together across the globe, from Brazil to Sweden and from Japan to Burkina Faso. German researchers are involved in five of the twelve supported projects.

Innovative research with an impact
The research programme „Transformations to Sustainability" (T2S) aims to develop understanding of and promote research on transformations to sustainability which are of significant social, economic and policy relevance throughout the world. The twelve three-year projects will conduct theoretically and methodologically innovative research on transformations to sustainability in different locations experiencing pressing social-ecological challenges. The knowledge produced by the projects will be of relevance to researchers, practitioners and policymakers across a multitude of sectors and will contribute to advancing transformative change around the globe.

Focus on social sciences and the humanities
The programme aims to restructure the broad field of sustainability research by placing social science, as well as the humanities, at the heart of interdisciplinary research in a step change in scale and scope for research programming on this topic.

Global pooling/ concentration of resources
The Transformations to Sustainability research programme is funded by thirteen NORFACE and Belmont Forum partners: Belgium, Brazil, Finland, France, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, United Kingdom and the United States. Furthermore, the International Science Council (ISC) funds the participation of researchers from six low- and lower-middle income countries, with the support of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) – Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, India, Nicaragua and Tanzania. The European Commission additionally provides financial means within an ERA-Net (European Research Area Network) „Transformations to Sustainability".

As a part of the World Social Science Forum in Fukuoka, Japan, the projects have been officially presented on 26 September 2018. A summary of the launch event such as the project presentations can be found here.

The DLR Project Management Agency manages the research programme technically and administratively on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).

A list of funded projects by the BMBF is provided on the right.

Find an overview of the funded projects here.

Last updated on