Dr. Marco Sonnberger

Marco Sonnberger studied sociology and political science at the Universities of Heidelberg and Stuttgart. Since April 2009, he has been conducting research on socio-ecological transformation processes in the fields of energy and mobility at the Center for Interdisciplinary Risk and Innovation Studies (ZIRIUS) at the University of Stuttgart. In 2014, he received his PhD in sociology from the University of Stuttgart. Since March 2021, in addition to his work at ZIRIUS, he is also research associate at the Department of Environmental Sociology at the University of Jena and is doing on the transformation of property regimes and the role of non-knowledge in the context of energy transitions. 

A picture of Dr. Marco Sonnberger.

Research Project

The subproject “Wind Harvest and Heat Theft” focuses on the emergence and transformation of property regimes in the context of the use of the natural resources wind and underground heat. In different case studies, it is investigated how existing property regimes and practices of use are challenged by perceived changes in the physical characteristics of the respective resources as well as by new interests of use (e.g., in the case of wake effects in wind farms). Thereby, the overall research objective is to analyze in depth how property rights to the natural resources wind and underground heat are socially constructed by different social actors and how different social interpretations come into conflict. 



  • Sonnberger, Marco; Ruddat, Michael; Arnold, Annika; Scheer, Dirk; Poortinga, Wouter; Böhm, Gisela et al. (2021): Climate concerned but anti-nuclear: Exploring (dis)approval of nuclear energy in four European countries. In: Energy Research & Social Science 75 (5), 102008.
  • Sonnberger, Marco; Leger, Matthias (2020): Gegen das Gemeinwohl. Eine qualitative Studie zur Deutung der Dieselfahrverbote in Stuttgart. In: Soziale Welt 71 (4), 475–506.
  • Sonnberger, Marco (2020): Renewable energy technologies and their implications for critical materials from a sociology of consumption perspective. The case of photovoltaic systems and electric vehicles. In: Alena Bleicher und Alexandra Pehlken (Eds.): The Material Basis of Energy Transitions. Amsterdam: Elsevier Academic Press, 207–221.
  • Gross, Matthias; Sonnberger, Marco (2020): How the diesel engine became a “dirty” actant: Compression ignitions and actor networks of blame. In: Energy Research and Social Science 61, 101359.
  • Graf, Antonia; Sonnberger, Marco (2020): Responsibility, rationality, and acceptance: How future users of autonomous driving are constructed in stakeholders’ sociotechnical imaginaries. In: Public Understanding of Science 29 (1), 61-75.