This research centers around the question: How can provincial governments take the lead in implementing an adaptive governance approach considering citizen-led wind energy development? A framework for ‘accommodative leadership’ was created - building on the work of Meijerink and Stiller (2013) regarding leadership in climate change adaptation, and the work of Sotarauta (2010) on place leadership. The combination of the two provides a leadership framework which aims to include both governmental actors and local citizens initiatives as potential leaders in wind energy development.
Three cases studies in three regions of the Netherlands were assessed. The results show that provinces adopt various leadership styles, referred to as ‘facilitative decentralization’, ‘deliberative innovation’ and ‘authoritative reluctance’. Our conclusion is that there is no roadmap for effective accommodative leadership, as it occurs in many forms. Nonetheless the developed framework can be used by regional governments as an assessment tool to understand the roles and actions which can potentially be taken by this authority to purposefully allocate their leadership capacities, while allowing citizen-led wind energy development.