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Michael Pregernig

Professor for Environmental Governance

Institute for Environmental Social Sciences and Geography
Tennenbacher Str. 4
D-79108 Freiburg

Telefon: 0761 203 3708
Telefax: 0761 203 3729

Office hours: Monday, 10.00-12.00; Thursday, 14.00-16.00

Prof.Dr. Pregernig, Michael



since May 2009:

  • Professor at the Institute for Environmental Social Sciences and Geography, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg


  • Professor and deputy leader of InFER – Institute for Forest-, Environmental- and Resource Policy 


  • Habilitation (venia docendi) on the subject of „Environmental- and resource policy“ at the University for Soil Culture, Vienna


  • Visiting Researcher at Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs an der John F. Kennedy School of Government  [], Harvard University (Cambridge, MA, USA)


  • Assistant researcher at the Institute for Forest-, Environmental- and Resource Policy


  • Researcher at the Institute for Socio-economics of Forestry and timber industry, at the University for Soil Culture, Vienna 

Reserach interests 

  • The role of science and expertise in environmental- and resource policy, with a focus on effective policy advice (evidence based policy making) and democratic inclusiveness
  • Reasons, manifestations and management of political conflicts oer the distribution or use of natural resources
  • Challenges for participation and represention for ensuring legitimacy, trust and acceptance
  • Society and risk, uncertainty and ambiguity
  • Integration of temporal, geographical and institutional levels of governance
  • Possibilities and loimitations for Inter- and Transdisciplinary Research and Education


During the last years, Michael Pregernig was involved in numerous research Projects. Recently, he worked on comparative analyses of new modes of scientific policy advice in the United States and Europe. He was involved in the coordination of a EU-FP6 Project on new forms of environmental governance with partners from 10 countries (GoFOR) Further, he was a member of the "Doktorandenkolleg Nachhaltige Entwicklung (dokNE) Currently he is working in a project on the policy advice in the field of climate change mitigation (ReSciPI), as well as th supervision of many dissertation projects. 

Publications (selection)

  • Pregernig, Michael (2014): Framings of science-policy interactions and their discursive and institutional effects: examples from conservation and environmental policy. Biodiversity and Conservation, online first.
  • Osei-Tutu, Paul, Pregernig, Michael & Pokorny, Benno (2014): Legitimacy of Informal Institutions in Contemporary Local Forest Management: Insights from Ghana. Biodiversity and Conservation, online first
  • Freytag, Tim, Pregernig, Michael & Detten, Roderich von (2014): Institut für Umweltsozialwissenschaften und Geographie: Disziplinoffene Perspektiven für Forschung und Lehre. SOZIALE TECHNIK, 2/2014, 11-14
  • Bauer, Anja & Pregernig, Michael (2013): Whose look into the future? Participation in technology assessment and foresight. Critical Policy Studies, 7/1, 18-36
  • Reinecke, Sabine, Pistorius, Till & Pregernig, Michael (2014): UNFCCC and the REDD+ Partnership from a networked governance perspective. Environmental Science & Policy, 35, 30-39.
  • Pregernig, Michael & Böcher, Michael (2013): The role of expertise in environmental governance: Theoretical perspectives and empirical evidence. In: Siebenhüner, Bernd, Arnold, Marlen, Eisenack, Klaus & Jacob, Klaus (eds) Long-Term Governance for Social-Ecological Change. London; New York: Routledge. pp. 29-46.
  • Bauer, Anja & Pregernig, Michael (2012): Wissen für eine vorausschauende Politik: Der Umgang mit Unsicherheit in Strategischer Umweltprüfung, Technikfolgenabschätzung und Foresight. In: von Detten, Roderisch, Faber, Fenn & Bemmann, Martin (Hg.) Unberechenbare Umwelt: Zum Umgang Mit Unsicherheit und Nicht-Wissen. Wiesbaden: Springer VS. pp. 121-155.
  • Hogl, Karl; Kvarda, Eva; Nordbeck, Ralf; Pregernig, Michael (eds) (2012): Environmental governance: The challenge of legitimacy and effectiveness. Cheltenham et al.: Edward Elgar.
  • Hogl, Karl; Kvarda, Eva; Nordbeck, Ralf; Pregernig, Michael (2012): Legitimacy and effectiveness of environmental governance: concepts and perspectives. In: Hogl, Karl; Kvarda, Eva; Nordbeck, Ralf; Pregernig, Michael (eds): Environmental governance: The challenge of legitimacy and effectiveness. Cheltenham et al.: Edward Elgar. pp. 1-26.
  • Pregernig, Michael; Böcher, Michael  (2012): Normative and analytical perspectives on the role of science and expertise in environmental governance. In: Hogl, Karl; Kvarda, Eva; Nordbeck, Ralf; Pregernig, Michael (eds): Environmental governance: The challenge of legitimacy and effectiveness. Cheltenham et al.: Edward Elgar. pp 199-219
  • Hogl, Karl; Kvarda, Eva; Nordbeck, Ralf; Pregernig, Michael (2012): Effectiveness and legitimacy of environmental governance: synopsis of key insights. In: Hogl, Karl; Kvarda, Eva; Nordbeck, Ralf; Pregernig, Michael (eds): Environmental governance: The challenge of legitimacy and effectiveness. Cheltenham et al.: Edward Elgar. pp. 280-304.
  • Silvestrini, Alessandra; Monni, Suvi; Pregernig, Michael; Barbato, Anna; Dallemand, Jean-Francois; Croci, Edoardo; Raes, Frank (2010): The role of cities in achieving the EU targets on biofuels for transportation: The cases of Berlin, London, Milan and Helsinki. Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice 44 (6): pp. 403-417.
  • Pregernig, Michael; Reinecke, Sabine (2010): Führungskompetenz in Nachhaltigkeitsfragen. Internationaler interdisziplinärer Master of Science "Environmental Governance" an der Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg. Soziologie. Forum der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Soziologie, 39 (1): 51-56.
  • Hogl, Karl; Nordbeck, Ralf; Pregernig, Michael (2008): New Modes of Governance: Programmatic Rhetoric and Actual Practices. GAIA, 17/4, 399-401.
  • Pregernig, Michael (2007): Science-Policy Consultation as Boundary Spanning: the Interaction of Science and Politics in Two US Bioregional Assessments. In: Reynolds, Keith M.; Thomson, Alan J.; Köhl, Michael; Shannon, Margaret A., Rae, Duncan; Rennolls, Keith (eds): Sustainable Forestry: From Monitoring and Modelling to Knowledge Management and Policy Science. Wallingford: CABI Publishers. pp. 129-144.
  • Pregernig, Michael (2007): Wirkungsmessung transdisziplinärer Forschung: Es fehlt der Blick aus der Distanz. GAIA – Ecological Perspectives in Science, Humanities, and Economics (Vol. 16 – No. 1). S. 46-51.
  • Pregernig, Michael (2007): Zwischen Alibi und Aushandlung: Ein empirischer Blick auf die Interaktion zwischen Wissenschaft und Politik am Beispiel der österreichischen Umwelt- und Ressourcenpolitik. In: Krott, Max; Suda, Michael (Hg.): Macht, Wissenschaft, Politik? Erfahrungen aus der wissenschaftlichen Beratung im Politikfeld Wald und Umwelt Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften. S. 43-79.
  • Pregernig, Michael (2006): Transdisciplinarity viewed from afar: science-policy assessments as forums for the creation of transdisciplinary knowledge. Science & Public Policy (Vol. 33 – No. 6). pp. 445-455.
  • Hogl, Karl; Pregernig, Michael; Weiss, Gerhard (2005): What is New About New Forest Owners? A Typology of Private Forest Ownership in Austria. Small-scale Forest Economics, Management and Policy (Vol. 4 - No. 3). pp. 325-342.
  • Feichtinger, Judith; Pregernig, Michael (2005): Participation And/Or/Versus Sustainability? Tensions Between Procedural and Substantive Goals in Two Local Agenda 21 Processes in Sweden and Austria. European Environment (Vol. 15 – No. 4). pp. 212-227.
  • Feichtinger, Judith; Pregernig, Michael (2005): Imagined Citizens and Participation: Local Agenda 21 in two communities in Sweden and Austria. Local Environment (Vol. 10 – No. 3). pp. 229-242.
  • Pregernig, Michael (2005): Wissenschaftliche Politikberatung als kultur­gebundene Grenzarbeit: Vergleich der Interaktionsmuster in den USA und Österreich. In: Bogner, Alexander; Torgersen, Helge (Hg.): Wozu Experten? Ambivalenzen der Beziehung von Wissenschaft und Politik. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften. S. 267-290.
  • Pregernig, Michael (2005): Biodiversity in national forest and environmental policy. In: Geburek, Thomas; Turok, Josef (eds): Conservation and Management of Forest Genetic Resources in Europe. Zvolen: Arbora Publishers. pp. 13-32.
  • Hogl, Karl; Pregernig, Michael (2002): Forest policy research in small countries: between (national) politics and (international) science. In: Biro, Yves; Buttoud, Gerard; Flies, Robert; Hogl, Karl; Pregernig, Michael; Päivinnen, Risto; Tikkanen, Ilpo; Krott, Max: Voicing interests and concerns: institutional framework and agencies for forest policy research in Europe. Forest Policy and Economics (Vol. 4 – No. 4). pp. 343-347.
  • Pregernig, Michael (2002): Perceptions, Not Facts: How Forestry Professionals Decide on the Restoration of Degraded Forest Ecosystems. Journal of Envi­ronmental Planning and Management (Vol. 45 – No. 1). pp. 25-38.
  • Pregernig, Michael (2001): Values of forestry professionals and their implica­tions for the applicability of policy instruments. Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research (Vol. 16  – Iss. 3). pp. 278‑288.
  • Pregernig, Michael (2000): Putting science into practice: The diffusion of scien­tific knowledge exemplified by the “Austrian Research Initiative Against Forest Decline”. Forest Policy and Economics (Vol. 1 – No. 2). pp. 165-176.
  • Pregernig, Michael (1999): Die Akzeptanz wissenschaftlicher Erkenntnisse. Determinanten der Umsetzung wissenschaftlichen Wissens am Beispiel der österreichischen ‚Forschungsinitiative gegen das Waldsterben’. Frankfurt am Main et al.: Lang.


Link to a detailed list of publications