Towards Decarbonization: Understanding EU Energy Governance

Open Access Journal | ISSN: 2183-2463

Editorial | Open Access

Towards Decarbonization: Understanding EU Energy Governance

  • Kacper Szulecki Department of Political Science, University of Oslo, Norway
  • Dag Herald Claes Department of Political Science, University of Oslo, Norway

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Abstract:  This editorial introduces the thematic issue “EU Energy Policy: Towards a Clean Energy Transition?”, nesting it in broader discussion on European Union’s (EU) energy policy. For over a decade, the EU has displayed an interest and political motivation to integrate climate policy priorities into its energy governance. However, the history of European energy governance does not start there, though political science scholarship has tended to downplay the importance of energy sector regulation. Recent years have finally seen the merging of two distinct research programs on European energy politics, and the emergence of a more inclusive and historically accurate approach to energy governance in Europe. This thematic issue follows that new paradigm. It is divided into three sections. The first investigates the EU Energy Union, its governance and decarbonization ambitions. The second section looks at the increasing overlaps between energy and competition policies, particularly the role of State Aid Guidelines in influencing energy subsidies—for renewable as well as conventional energy. Finally, the third section analyses the energy and climate policy of “new” EU members and the relationship between the EU and non-members in the energy sector.

Keywords:  climate policy; decarbonization; electricity; energy policy; energy transition; European Union; governance; public policy; renewable energy; state aid



© Kacper Szulecki, Dag Herald Claes. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (, which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.