EMIGMA was a research project funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) between 2010 and 2013. It was part of the research project “Soziale Dimensionen von Klimaschutz und Klimawandel” [Social dimensions of climate protection and climate change] carried out under the auspices of the BMBF’s Social-Ecological Research programme (SÖF). The project researched the environmental conduct and environment-related attitudes of Turkish and Russian-speaking migrants and developed approaches to strengthen their commitment to climate protection. This approach is also reflected in the title of the research project: “EMIGMA – Empowerment von Migranten für den Klimaschutz” (EMIGMA - empowerment of migrants for climate protection.)

The research project was undertaken by a project group from the University of Applied Sciences in Dortmund led by Professor Marcel Hunecke and Professor  Ahmet Toprak. The group comprises both environmental psychologists along with educational and social scientists. In addition to Dortmund University of Applied Sciences, the ifeu-Institute in Heidelberg was also part of the research consortium. ifeu was primarily responsible for the analysis of environmental behaviour, with particular emphasis on the CO2 balance sheet. ifeu was therefore able to incorporate the scientific perspective into the research project.

In addition to the research establishments, representatives of migrant organisers were involved in the project as practice partners. These practice partners include:

In the first phase (2010-2012) a representative survey was conducted using standardised interviews in the four regions of Dortmund, Berlin, Munich and Baden-Württemberg to record environmental behavior, environment-related attitudes, and the level of commitment in three areas of action – everyday mobility, housing and nutrition. The knowledge was then further consolidated through qualitative interviews. The CO2 calculator developed by ifeu was used to quantify the environmental behaviour.

In the second phase (2012/2013), environmental psychology intervention measures (information, behavioural feedback, behavioural offers and incentives) were adapted to specific target groups and problems, and their effectiveness assessed.


September 2010 – August 2013


Federal Ministry of Education and Research


Dortmund University of Applied Sciences and Arts


EMIGMA homepage at the Dortmund University of Applied Sciences and Arts featuring central results from phase 1 (representative survey)

Interview (PDF, 48 KB) with Udo Lambrecht (ifeu) from the research journal “Orange” published by Dortmund University of Applied Sciences and Arts (in German)

Book publication “Empowerment von Migrant_innen zum Klimaschutz – Konzepte, empirische Befunde und Handlungsempfehlungen” (Empowerment of migrants in relation to climate protection concepts – empirical evidence and recommendations for action)

Further content: