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Sustainability transformations over time and space

The mission of the group is to contribute with high-quality research on fundamental issues related to grand societal challenges of globalisation and climate change, such as renewable energy transitions, institutional developments for a global carbon price, and Swedish innovations for sustainability.

The research group on Sustainability transformations at the Economic History Department aims to understand how unsustainable practises and sustainability transformations unfold over time and at a global scale. In different projects, we explore the complex interrelations of the social, economic, and environmental dimensions of transformations towards sustainable development.

Specifically, there are currently externally funded research projects around climate clubs and carbon border adjustment mechanisms; the early energy transitions in Britain in the 17th century, as well as a project on the Swedish bioeconomy sector.


The group has produced several historical databases, notably:

  • SWINNO on Swedish innovations 1970–2017
  • LEG on long term energy and growth in Europe 1800-2010
  • TCBA (Technology adjusted carbon footprints) 1995-2016 for the entire world.

The sustainability transformation group has research projects and programmes funded by several national and international agencies: Vinnova, Vetenskapsrådet and Handelsbankens forskningsstiftelser.

Additionally, we occasionally work as advisors of different national organisations, like Miljömålsberedningen and Vinnova.


Astrid Kander


Josef Taalbi
Senior lecturer, associate professor