Purpose – This chapter compares bioenergy policy developments in Germany and Denmark to better understand the responses of EU country policy regimes to global shocks; to examine potentially emerging new trends of productivist policy models; and to explore potential land use conflicts in the context of a multifunctional EU agricultural policy. Design/methodology/approach – The chapter reviews the bioenergy policy development pathways taken by Germany and Denmark, highlighting key consequences for agricultural land use and rural development. Findings from both case studies are then compared in summary tables, followed by a discussion of the possible emergence of productivist policy approaches in the bioenergy sector in these countries. Findings – The bioenergy policies pursued by both countries differ in key respects and yet have had the same result-an increase in the productivist orientation of agriculture, legitimised by the environmental concerns of bioenergy policy. The Danish and German case studies also demonstrate that the particular pathways taken to establish bioenergy policies in each country have been strongly influenced by local political, farming and technological dynamics. Originality/value – This chapter presents a telling case of what Burton and Wilson (this volume) call “repositioned productivism”, where productivist approaches benefit from environmental or multifunctional policy rationale to continue at the farm level.
Research in Rural Sociology and Development, 2012, Vol 18, p. 235-262