Gilles Lepesant – Research & CV

Contested energy transitions.
Conflicts and social innovations in the Czech Republic, Poland, Germany, and France

CEFRES Research Area 2: Norms and Transgressions

Contact : gilles.lepesant[@]

His research focuses on the transformations in the geography of energy induced by the increasing role played by renewables. The research covers the strategies deployed at the European Union level as well as at the national level (particularly in Germany and in Central Europe) and at the local and regional level. The main research areas are the EU energy-climate policy, the spatial implications of its implementation and the challenges linked to the deployment of renewable energies (permitting, social acceptance, consistency with ESG principles). Taking into account the strong inertia in energy systems, the objective is to investigate the historical, political and technical factors that accelerate or inhibit the deployment of renewable energies and to contribute to the empirical and theoretical literature related to this field.

At CEFRES, he is coordinating with Martin Ďurďovič (Senior researcher at the Institute of Sociology of the Czech Academy of Sciences) the Tandem project “Contested energy transitions. Conflicts and social innovations in the Czech Republic, Poland, Germany, and France”.

This project takes place in the context of an energy transition enshrined into the “Green Deal” whose aim is to achieve climate neutrality by 2050. The research carried out aims at identifying tensions and conflicts linked to the energy transition, to highlight the perceptions of the different stakeholders and to investigate the innovations deployed to overcome constraints and challenges. The project covers four countries: Czech Republic, Poland, Germany and France as well as a set of cities and regions within these countries.

Publications (selection)

  • Gilles Lepesant (2024), « Entre défis de sécurité et ambitions climatiques, l’affirmation d’une Union européenne de l’énergie », L’Information géographique, Janvier.
  • Gilles Lepesant (2024), « Adapting coastal areas to sea-level rise in Netherlands and in France. Between hard protections, nature-based solutions and managed retreat », Special issue : « Grassroot innovations in climate action : unpacking cooperations and conflicts in multilevel governance ». Zeitschrift für Vergleichende Politikwissenschaft, Février.
  • Gilles Lepesant, (2023), “Higher Renewable Energy Targets in Germany. How Will the Industry Benefit?”, Briefings de l’Ifri, Ifri, January 6.
  • Gilles Lepesant (2022), Géographies des énergies, l’Europe dans le nouvel équilibre mondial, Éditions Hermann, Paris.
  • Gilles Lepesant (2022), « Vers une transition énergétique allemande adossée aux énergies renouvelables et au gaz ? », Allemagne d’aujourd’hui, n°239.