On October 26-27, 2017 at Sciences Po Bordeaux (France), Marlyne Sahakian and Laure Dobigny of the University of Geneva ENERGISE team presented some initial results in a workshop titled "Deconstructing Participatory Climate Governance: Innovation or Business as Usual?". The interest in the workshop demonstrates the growing focus on participatory governance when it comes to energy usage and related climate governance: over 130 papers were submitted, with some 24 guests selected to present papers and share in the discussions at this stimulating event.
The paper by the ENERGISE team proposed a review of Swiss initiatives aimed at improving or reducing household energy consumption, involving 46 examples. As implied in the title of the paper, «From governing behaviour to transformative change», the focus was on understanding what initiatives were based on a «business as usual approach» or an understanding of change through governing and individual behaviour; and what initiatives were more aligned with the idea of change as socially embedded and transformative. In addition to these two ideal types, the review of initiatives considered the role of participatory methods. One of our conclusions is that academic actors in Switzerland are playing a key role in the promotion of participative methods, through co-design and co-knowledge production with cities, associations and utility companies - as well as citizens.