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Governing regional adaptation to climate change


The project researches the governance of regional adaptation to climate change in the context of the pilot program  “Adaptation to climate change” by the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN).

Project information

The goal of the project is to gain insight into the governance of regional adaptation to climate change based on case studies of selected pilot projects. The project seeks to identify conducive and inhibiting factors for regional adaptation to climate change. These findings should increase our understanding of determining factors for adaptation to climate change on the regional and on the local level. Furthermore the project should allow some conclusions on the pilot program as a whole as well as the collaboration between state, cantons and municipalities.

Background: Pilot program “Adaptation to climate change”

To support cantons, regions and municipalities in dealing with the new challenges posed by climate change, the FOEN has launched the pilot program “Adaptation to climate change”. The program seeks to initiate and realize innovative and exemplary
projects to facilitate adaptation to the consequences of climate change in cantons,
regions and municipalities with financial support from the state. The supported
projects are meant to minimize climate risks locally and to promote the
realization of opportunities created by climate change. They further aim to
increase the sensibility of the involved parties to adaptation possibilities
and to increase collaboration between stakeholders.

The projects have a maximal run-time of three years (2014-2016). They’re divided
into five thematic clusters:

  • Handling of local water shortage
  • Handling of natural hazards
  • Management of ecosystem changes and land use.
  • Climate adapted development of cities and settlements
  • Knowledge transfer and governance


The project is financed by the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN).

Project team

WSL Research Group Regional Economics and Development.

Project partner:

Tina Haisch (University of Bern, Institute of Geography, Economic Geography)