PhD Summer School 2015: Green City Frankfurt; Shaping Transition Pathways For a Future Economy

24 Aug 2015

Register now before 1 July 2015 and take the chance to learn all about Making transitions happen!

Frankfurt – home of the European Central Bank and symbol for the European financial policy – is a growing city trying to balance the challenge of economic prosperity and ecological sustainability. Frankfurt intends to continue its successful positioning as an economic centre but faces challenges as the increasing international competition, digitalization, the demographic change as well as its limited space. Frankfurt Economic Development (“Wirtschaftsfoerderung”) has therefore established the Masterplan Industry, which combines a variety of strategies to strengthen the position of the industry and to ensure sustainable future economy. On the other hand, the city of Frankfurt places high importance to the goal of ecological sustainability and has decided to transform its energy supply to 100% renewable energy sources until the year 2050.

Aim of Summer school

As a practical assignment, the participants will develop innovative concepts for the integration of economic prosperity and ecological sustainability in Frankfurt. This includes working on one or more of the following topics regarding Green Economy:

  • How can the European goal of Green Growth be transferred to a regional level?
  • What are Green Jobs and how can they be fostered through innovation?
  • What does the Green Transition mean for specific industrial sectors (finance, logistics, manufacturing industry, IT)?
  • How can Frankfurt realise its aim to become a Green City in the economic and industrial realm?
  • How can a city foster Green Prosperity? Which measures or incentives can be taken by city representatives to strengthen the involvement of the industry in the transition process?
  • Which barriers need to be overcome in transition processes in a city?
  • Which new coalitions among stakeholders are necessary to make transitions happen and how can these coalitions be implemented?


This summer school offers you:

  • To combine theory with practice in the field of the Green economy and transition management;
  • To learn how a major city is seeking to transform its economy onto a low-carbon, sustainable basis;
  • To develop a concise proposal how the city should act on the Green Economy rationale through measures such as fostering Green Jobs or creating incentives for sustainable finance;
  • To meet, discuss and question key business leaders and policy-makers;
  • To get in touch with people from all over the world and to work in interdisciplinary teams.


Please check the website www.ckic-phd-ffm.net for more comprehensive information on this summer school

In case of any questions concerning this PhD Summer school, feel free to contact Julia Woth via julia.woth@climate-kic.org or +49 69 – 305 43979

Julia Woth Provadis School of International Management and Technology AG Frankfurt/Main, Germany


Hosting companies

This Summer School is organized by Climate-KIC and its academic cooperation partners Provadis School of International Technology and Management AG, Goethe University Frankfurt and Technical University Darmstadt.

Learning objectives

The Purpose of the Climate-KIC PhD Summer School in general is:

  • To equip participants with the knowledge of transformative, socio-technical innovation using a systems approach.
  • To deliver knowledge on the concept of Green Economy and to illustrate the practical implications of this political framework on the city level for different industries (finance, logistics, manufacturing industry, IT).
  • To exchange ideas between students and experts and to develop new project ideas for low carbon innovation within the key economic sectors of the city
  • To provide practice oriented tools of transition management that students could use to enrich their individual projects.
  • To enable PhD students to link their individual research projects to low carbon innovation activities.

Programme outline

Week One (24 – 30 August)

Main Goals:

  • Understanding the challenge
  • Getting to know important theoretical concepts
  • Identifying the group work topics


Sunday 23 August

Day 0

Arrival, official welcome. Expectation setting session and a   (voluntary) joint dinner.

Monday 24 August

Day 1

– Transition management (lectures). Setting the scene: The Green Economy rationale – theory and implications (lectures). – Frankfurt city tour, focussing on transition experiments towards a low carbon society.

Tuesday 25 August

Day 2

– Accelerating the Green Transition on a local level (lecture and round table): 1. Introduction of the challenge 2. Structure and challenge of the city of Frankfurt. – Outline of the group assignments; expected outputs and processes.

Wednesday 26 August

Day 3

– Academic Coaching – linking the summer school theme to your individual PhD research projects: 1. Individual scientific career paths 2. Positioning the individual research projects in a transition context – Transition Management: Visioning and back-casting (lecture).

Thursday 27 August

Day 4

– Cross-industrial innovation (lectures). – Green jobs (lectures). – Practical example of current projects in the City of Frankfurt. – Formation of working groups for the group assignment.

Friday 28 August

Day 5

– Industries of Frankfurt: Finance industry (lectures and case study) – Meeting with the Climate-KIC ‘Making Transitions Happen Platform’ Linking the Summer school to the overall Climate-KIC strategy goals. – Lectures and joint dinner

Saturday 29 August

Day 6

– Time for group work on transition assignment – Leisure time, explore the city

Sunday 30 August

Day 7

– Excursion: Day-Trip Rheingau (voluntary)


Programme Outline

Week Two (31 August – 04 September)

Main Goals:

  • Working in groups on the development of concepts for the city of Frankfurt
  • Getting to know the main industrial areas of Frankfurt and their transition challenges
  • Preparing and presenting the group works on transition assignments


Monday 31 August
Day 8 

– Industries of Frankfurt II: manufacturing industry and case study

Tuesday 1 September
Day 9

– Industries of Frankfurt III: logistics and case study

– Time for group work on transition assignments

Wednesday 2 September
Day 10           

– Industries of Frankfurt IV: IT industry and case study – World cafe on project ideas

Thursday 3 September
Day 11           

– Industrial perspectives from consultancy – Time for group work on transition assignments – Test run for the presentations in front of the jury

Friday 4 September
Day 12           

– Presentation of group works in front of a journey consisting of academic experts on transition management, practitioners, city representatives.

– Announcement of jury decision. – Debriefing session


Saturday 5 September
Day 13


Who can participate?

The participation in a PhD thematic summer school is part of the Climate-KIC PhD programme. All Climate-KIC PhD students should take part in a thematic summer school in their second or third year.

Furthermore we are happy to welcome students pursuing their PhD outside of Climate-KIC and who are interested in climate change topics. Post-graduates with outstanding skills and motivation to participate are also invited to apply.

The summer school will be held in English, in order to participate, students should have sufficient language skills. Therefore, short interviews might be conducted with the applicants to test their English skills and their motivation.


How to apply?

Apply today!

All details can be found here:

Applications for this summer school are now being received until the application deadline of 15 July 2015. Please provide a copy of your passport as an attachment to your application.

Any applications submitted after the deadline will be marked late and will be considered only after the review of applications received on or before 1 July 2015.



As the PhD Summer School is an integral part of Climate-KIC’s PhD programme, costs are fully covered for Climate-KIC labelled students.

  • 500,- EUR for PhDs from partner universities and EU citizens
  • 2.000,- EUR for non-EU passport holders

The costs of the programme include accommodation (in double rooms), breakfast and lunch, approx. five dinners per week, as well as local transportation. Participants need to cover the travel costs to/from Frankfurt themselves.

After the confirmation of acceptance, invoices will be sent out to participants. Course fees need to be paid three weeks before the start of the programme.


Events you may be interested in
Funding and financing industrial-urban symbiosis projects
Created with Sketch. Online
Funding and financing industrial-urban symbiosis projects
European Urban Resilience Forum
Created with Sketch. Valencia, Spain
European Urban Resilience Forum
Climate Reality Leadership Training in Rome
Created with Sketch. Rome, Italy
Climate Reality Leadership Training in Rome
citiES 2030 Summer School
Created with Sketch. Santander, Spain
citiES 2030 Summer School
Joint training in atmospheric composition
Created with Sketch. Oslo, Norway & online
Joint training in atmospheric composition