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International transfer of technologies for climate adaptation: The case of membrane bio-reactors


  • Sartorius, Christian
  • Strauch, Manuel
  • Gandenberger, Carsten


Existing research on the international transfer of climate technologies has so far largely concentrated on the transfer of mitigation technologies. However, the UNFCCC's decision to adopt the Cancún Adaptation Framework reflects the increasing political priority that is given to climate adaptation in general, as well as to the development and transfer of adaptation technologies. Given this situation, the objective of this case study is to explore the specific drivers and barriers pertaining to the international transfer and diffusion of membrane bio-reactors (MBR), a water treatment technology that enables the reclamation and reuse of water and helps to reduce the negative impacts of climate change. While this technology has largely been developed in industrialized countries, many of those countries that are most vulnerable to draughts and water scarcity belong to the developing world. Therefore, this case study analyzes the international transfer of MBR technology to two emerging economies, Brazil and China. Methodologically, the case study combines quantitative evidence, e.g. trade and patent data, with qualitative evidence gained from the analysis of the relevant legal and political framework in Brazil and China, as well as from insights gained from eight personal interviews with experts representing MBR companies and policy makers.

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  • Sartorius, Christian & Strauch, Manuel & Gandenberger, Carsten, 2015. "International transfer of technologies for climate adaptation: The case of membrane bio-reactors," Working Papers "Sustainability and Innovation" S8/2015, Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:fisisi:s82015

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Anne Olhoff, 2015. "Adaptation in the context of technology development and transfer," Climate Policy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(1), pages 163-169, January.
    2. Sabbioni, Guillermo, 2008. "Efficiency in the Brazilian sanitation sector," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 11-20, March.
    3. Seroa da Motta, Ronaldo & Moreira, Ajax, 2006. "Efficiency and regulation in the sanitation sector in Brazil," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 185-195, September.
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    International Technology Transfer; Climate Adaptation; Membrane Bio-Reactors;

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