Agora Energiewende


Agora Energiewende is a think tank that develops evidence-based and politically viable strategies to advance the goal of climate neutrality in Germany, Europe, and the rest of the world. We inform policymakers, economists, researchers, and civil society while encouraging a productive exchange of ideas. Our policy proposals are practical and free of prior ideological commitments. We are a non-profit organisation funded by foundations and public institutions and hence are beholden neither to business nor to politics. Our exclusive mission is to serve the climate.


Agora Energiewende develops robust policy proposals for decarbonising the economy. In doing so, we rely on the targets set by the German government and the European Union and on research carried out by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Since its founding in 2012, Agora Energiewende has become one of Europe’s leading energy and climate policy think tanks. Over the years, we have developed many proposals and presented them to the public. We have also forged a growing network of partner organisations that perform similar functions in their own countries.

In addition to research, Agora Energiewende promotes dialogue and public relations in its capacity as a go-between for decision-makers, interest groups, researchers, and media. Our dedicated team, which is composed of over 80 members, provides answers to questions that are decisive for the clean-energy transition and a climate-neutral industry, be they economic, technological, or political.

Because no single institution can completely apprehend the complexity of the transition from fossil fuels to renewables, Agora Energiewende cultivates intensive discussions with the most important interest groups from politics, civil society, economics, and science. The key question guiding the discussions is which climate and energy policies can ensure a rapid transformation of the economy towards climate neutrality.

Organisational structure

Agora Energiewende is under the trusteeship of the non-profit Smart Energy for Europe Platform (SEFEP). SEFEP is run by the management team of Agora Energiewende, consisting of Patrick Graichen, Markus Steigenberger, Frank Peter, Jesse Scott, and Matthias Buck. The management is monitored by the supervisory board. Until April 2021, Stiftung Mercator and the European Climate Foundation, the initiators of Agora Energiewende, bore the shareholder responsibility for the institute.

Our interdisciplinary and international team of about 100 employees develops climate and energy policy proposals for achieving climate neutrality. With over 20 nationalities and a broad spectrum of disciplines – from engineers to economists and political scientists – we possess the necessary expertise. Our work addresses the entire range of transformation necessary for the energy economy, together with associated technical, economic, and policy-related questions. On policy matters in the transport sector we work closely together with our sister organisation Agora Transport Transformation.

The Council of the Agora consists of leading energy policy thinkers of Germany and Europe. Ministers, business leaders, professors, representatives of civil society, and other luminaries regularly meet to discuss current trends, develop new ideas, and advise the Agora Energiewende team.

Grants and donations to SEFEP

2017-2020 *

Third-party donors 2017 (in €) 2018 (in €) 2019 (in €) 2020 (in €)
Foundations / Philanthropy        
Stiftung Mercator 2.249.158,48 1.866.002,00 1.912.000,00 1.500.000,00
European Climate Foundation 1.164.634,48 1.057.214,39 697.642,58 1.549.109,94
Aspen Global Change Institute (AGCI)     2.350.815,26 1.147.178,79
Forum for active philanthropy       90.000,00
Climate Imperative (CI)       1.691.445,37
State Institutions        
German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU)   535.591,32 944.212,33 894.419,31
Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) 279.036,83 420.158,33 974.407,57 921.243,47
Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) 54.492,00 182.892,66 18.362,34 -110,34
Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)   8.700,00 42.626,07 47.932,71
Austrian Federal Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism (BMNT)   79.928,00 118.522,00  
  3.747.321,79 4.150.486,70 7.058.588,15 7.841.219,25

* including onward transfers and donations to partner organizations

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