Wind Energy and Society

At DTU Wind Energy, we have a group of researchers and PhD students that are working with a range of complex socio-technical dimensions of wind energy.

Research: What we do – and how we do it
  • How is it that a planned wind farm project can go from holding great promise to being rejected, even though all the required public meetings were held, and all the agreements with the landowners and municipality were in place? 
  • Why do local communities increasingly object to wind power developments in Denmark – a country known for its long tradition of citizen-owned wind power – and how may local communities be better engaged in the green transition?
  • Why is wind farm deployment coming to a halt in Germany even though an “Energiewende” is supposed to be happening? 
  • How do innovation and market-making processes in the wind energy sector differ between countries, and what can we learn from it? 
  • How can different renewable energy support instruments incentivise and sustain a more stakeholder-diverse energy transition accommodating more innovative yet risk-exposed local energy actors with more consolidated, larger market players? 
  • How effectively is the EU’s market-driven energy transition policy being translated into national jurisdictions through liberalized structures of commodity exchange, and how are these shaping the way through which different market players valuate, contest, and/or accept different forms of renewable energy deployment?    

These are some of the apparent questions and paradoxes that we are investigating in our group. As we disentangle them, we work from various perspectives and viewpoints and adopt different methodologies, not only focusing on Denmark, but also on the international contexts of Europe (e.g. Scotland, Norway, Germany) as well emerging economies like China and South Africa. 
Our work is inter-disciplinary, using practical insights of engineers and scientists in combination with different academic traditions within the social sciences, in particular Science & Technology Studies, Human Geography, Anthropology, Sociology of Innovation and Research, often in combination with Economics and other fields.

Other activities

Our group is engaged in research-based teaching activities, for instance the DTU Online Master of Wind Energy, offering lectures on wind farm planning from both a sociological perspective and a practical viewpoint. We are planning to develop new inter-disciplinary courses to enhance the education of engineers to better enable them to understand and handle the complexity of wind farm developments and the role of wind energy in the green transition.

As a truly multi-disciplinary group, we like to think of our overall role as helping engineers to hold up a mirror to themselves and their work, to understand their own role in making the green transition ‘work’ from as broad a perspective as possible. This we believe is something which is crucial to meet the necessary renewable energy ambitions, not just in Denmark but also globally, and to win in the fight against climate change.

Who we work with

In our work we consider it important that we engage with stakeholders and actors who are facing challenges and those with whom we can exchange knowledge and refine the research of the field. Our research projects are therefore carried out in collaboration with both Danish and foreign research institutes and universities, and in partnership with companies and municipalities, and cooperation with other divisions and sections of the Wind Energy Department as well as other departments at DTU.

What we offer

We can, among other things, offer the following:

  • Policy advice in regards to public engagement and science communication;
  • Help organizing and facilitating workshops;
  • We are happy to come and present our research findings to practitioners in the field as well as at DTU.
  • Partnering in research projects
Plans for future projects and collaborations and funding

We have so far been funded by different sources such as:

  • The Strategic Research Council of Denmark
  • EUDP
  • The Norwegian Research Council
  • Independent Research Fund Denmark
  • The EU Horizon 2020 programme

We are always working on funding applications and on the outlook for new opportunities in a Danish, EU- and international context, for both basic and applied research. 

Please feel free to contact us as a group or individually, as we are continuously exploring new potential avenues of research, funding, and research collaborations. We look forward to hearing from academia, business, civil society, politicians, and the media regarding such opportunities. 


David Philipp Rudolph
DTU Wind Energy
+45 93 51 14 32


Laura Tolnov Clausen
DTU Wind Energy
+45 31 96 49 08


Julia Kirch Kirkegaard
DTU Wind Energy
+45 93 51 14 31