This international comparative study provides insight in the political-institutional conditions that have impeded and encouraged onshore wind power implementation in the Netherlands, England and the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. The extent to which wind power, as a new energy technology, has become embedded in existing routines and practices (institutions) of society, differs between the cases. North Rhine-Westphalia, which is most successful in terms of installed capacity, is also most successful in terms of social acceptance of wind power. Wind power developments started in the form of grass-roots initiatives in which many citizens participated. Over time, in North Rhine-Westphalia, wind power became embedded as an environmentally preferable energy source, as a new economic sector, and as a socially acceptable alternative to conventional energy generation. In the other cases, the historical trajectories have been different and less successful.
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Sylvia Breukers conducted her PhD research at the Amsterdam Institute for Metropolitan and International Development Studies, University of Amsterdam, under supervision of Maarten Wolsink and Ton Dietz. At present she works as a post-doc at the department of Innovation and Environmental Sciences, Utrecht University.