Smart Rebound – Increased energy and resource efficiency through rebound prevention of Smart Cities

A study commissioned by the Federal Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology; project duration: Nov 2014 – Sep 2015

Project management: Univ.-Doz. Dr. Dietmar Kanatschnig (ÖIN)

Project implementation: Sylvia Mandl, MSc, Dr. Dietmar Kanatschnig (ÖIN)

The study deals with the question of how the objectives of Smart Cities can be designed as effectively as possible.

While an extensive range has been designed to develop technical solutions to increase the energy and resource efficiency in cities under the existing Smart Cities activities, it is now all about a corresponding demand for these technological solutions by city residents. The greater the gap between (technological) supply and (social) demand is, the more likely rebound effects dampen the effectiveness of resource and energy efficiency policies. This can be counteracted by a combination of technology and its implementation in a socially acceptable form, which leads to better quality of life and also focuses on new ways of life of the younger urbanites.

The study develops the basis for strengthening the link between technological and social development and prepares them so that they can be integrated into the Smart Cities concept. The primary goal is the reduction of preventive rebound effects, where in addition to the ecological and economic aspects, social aspects such as affordability (keyword: energy poverty) and global resources fairness (keyword: renewable resources) are taken into account.

In the first part of the study the energy and resource use along the needs of housing, employment, mobility, nutrition, consumption, leisure and education is presented. It is shown, where key points for increasing the energy and resource efficiency of urban lifestyles can be found and how/ which technological solutions contribute to a sustainable alignment of these ways of life (in the sense of a preventive rebound management). In the second part recommendations for targeted networking (mutual assistance) are drawn up by technological and social development, which can also be used as a basis for an ex-ante evaluation of the achievement of Smart Cities activities.


Kanatschnig, Dietmar; Mandl, Sylvia (2015): Smart Rebound. Steigerung der Energie- und Ressourceneffizienz durch Rebound-Prävention bei Smart Cities. Final report. Vienna: Austrian Institute for Sustainable Development.