The International Energy Agency (IEA) is an autonomous organization within the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OCED). It was founded in 1974 as a response from industrialized countries to the first energy and oil crisis. As a result, the emphasis was initially on ensuring the oil supply. Since then, new fields of relevance have emerged: a joint policy regarding the climate, market reforms, and cooperation in the development of new energy technologies. The aim is to involve and inform developing countries in questions of energy policy. The IEA fulfils an advisory function and supports its 30 member states in advancing global research, development, and application of new energy technologies and a sustainable global energy system.

Research into technology initiatives and transfer from theory to practice

The IEA’s multilateral Technology Collaboration Programmes (TCPs) represent an important instrument in these activities. Within each programme, the work, obligations, and objectives of the collaboration are contractually agreed. Germany is currently involved in 22 out of a total of 38 ongoing TCPs.

Research- and market-related activities within each TCP are conducted in units internally called “tasks” and “annexes”. The stakeholders can decide which areas they want to be involved in depending on their interests. The major benefits of participation are the cooperations in research and development, the international exchange of information, and the networking between experts. Non-member states can also participate in the TCPs. Opportunities for cooperation are open to research institutions and private companies in all technological areas of non-nuclear energy research and fusion. Germany is involved in the following technology initiatives related to buildings and neighbourhoods:

Solar Heating and Cooling Programme (SHC TCP)

Heat Pumping Technologies (HPT TCP)

Energy in Buildings and Communities (EBC TCP)

District Heating and Cooling (DHC TCP)

Energy Conversation through Energy Storage (ECES TCP)

Detailed information about the IEA and its technology initiatives is available on the website Website