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Coordinating Bureau

The Coordinating Bureau was originally set up at and financed by Öko-Institut in Darmstadt, Germany, a non-governmental, non-profit research institute.


Three organisations currently share the organisational work of the network: Öko-Institut, IESAR at the University of Applied Sciences in Bingen and sofia, the Society for Institutional Analysis, located at the University of Darmstadt. The person of contact is Prof. Dr. Roller at IESAR, Bingen. The three organisations are described below in greater depth. 

The University of Applied Sciences in Bingen was founded in 1897. It is a practice-orientated academic institution which runs courses in electrical engineering, computer science for engineering, mechanical engineering, business management for engineering, process engineering, biotechnology, agriculture, international agricultural trade and environmental engineering.

The Institute for Environmental Studies and Applied Research (IESAR) was founded in 2003 as an integrated institution of the University of Applied Sciences of Bingen. IESAR carries out applied research projects and advisory services, mainly in the fields of environmental law and economy, environmental management and international cooperation for development. It identifies itself as an interdisciplinary institution.

The Institute fulfils its assignments in the main by:

  • Undertaking projects in developing countries
  • Carrying out seminars in the fields of the environment and development
  • Conducting research for European institutions
  • Providing an advisory service to companies and know-how-transfer

Its key areas of research are:

European environmental policy

  • Research on implementation of European law
  • Effectiveness of legal and economic instruments
  • European governance

Environmental advice in developing countries

  • Advice on legislation and institution development
  • Know-how-transfer

Companies and environment

  • Environmental management
  • Risk management


Prof. Dr. jur. Gerhard Roller
University of Applied Sciences
Berlinstrasse 109
D-55411 Bingen/Germany
Phone: +49(0)6721-409-363
Fax: +49(0)6721-409-110


The Society for Institutional Analysis (sofia) was established in 1998. It is located at the University of Applied Sciences in Darmstadt and the University of Göttingen, both of which are in Germany. The sofia research group aims to support regulatory choice at every level of public legislative bodies (EC, national and regional). It also analyses and improves the strategies of public and private organisations.

The sofia team is multidisciplinary: lawyers and economists collaborate with engineers as well as social and natural scientists. The interdisciplinary behaviour model of homo oeconomicus institutionalis, which takes into account the formal (e.g. laws and contracts) and informal (e.g. rules of fairness) institutional context of individual behaviour, constitutes its theoretical basis.

Its areas of research comprise:

  • Product policy/REACh
  • Land use strategies
  • Role of standardisation bodies
  • Biodiversity and nature conservation
  • Water and energy management
  • Electronic public participation
  • Economic opportunities deriving from environmental legislation
  • Self-responsibility

sofia is working on behalf of:

  • VolkswagenStiftung
  • German Federal Ministry of Education and Research
  • Hessian Ministry of Economics
  • German Institute for Standardization (DIN)
  • German Federal Environmental Agency (UBA)
  • German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)
  • Federal Ministry of Consumer Protection, Food and Agriculture


Darmstadt Office:
Prof. Dr. Martin Führ – sofia
University of Applied Sciences
Haardtring 100
D-64295 Darmstadt/Germany
Phone: +49-(0)6151-16-8734/35/31
Fax: +49-(0)6151-16-8740

Göttingen Office:
Prof. Dr. Kilian Bizer – sofia
University of Göttingen
Platz der Göttinger Sieben 3
D-37073 Göttingen/Germany
Phone: +49-(0)551-39-4602
Fax: +49-(0)551-39-19558



Öko-Institut (Institut für angewandte Ökologie - Institute for Applied Ecology, a registered non-profit-association) was founded in 1977. Its founding was closely associated with the conflict over the building of the nuclear power plant in Wyhl (on the Rhine, near the city of Freiburg, the seat of the Institute). The objective of the Institute was and is environmental research conducted independently of government and industry, for the benefit of society. The results of its research are made available to the public.

The institute's mission is to analyse and evaluate current and future environmental problems, to draw attention to risks, and to develop and implement problem-solving strategies and measures. In doing so, Öko-Institut follows the guiding principle of sustainable development.

The institute's activities are organised into divisions: Energy & Climate Protection, Infrastructure & Enterprises, Nuclear Energy & Plant Safety, Sustainable Products & Material Flows, and Environmental Law & Governance.

The Environmental Law & Governance Division of the Öko-Institut:

The Environmental Law & Governance Division covers a broad spectrum of environmental law, developing scientific studies for public and private clients, consulting governments and public authorities, participating in law-drafting processes and mediating stakeholder dialogues. Lawyers of the Division work on international, EU and national environmental law, concentrating on waste management, emission control, energy and climate protection, nuclear, aviation and planning law.


Freiburg Head Office:
P.O. Box 17 71
D-79017 Freiburg
Phone: +49 (0)761-4 52 95-0
Fax: +49 (0)761-4 52 95-88

Darmstadt Office:
Rheinstrasse 95
D-64295 Darmstadt
Phone: +49 (0)6151-81 91-0
Fax: +49 (0)6151-81 91-33

Berlin Office:
Schicklerstraße 5-7
D-10179 Berlin
Phone: +49 (0)30-40 50 85-0
Fax: +49 (0)30-40 50 85-388