Is it better to use the German word "Energiewende", when referring to changes to the whole energy market or should one rather translate it into the proper English translation 'energy transition'. If I would stick to German, should I put it into single/double quotes or none. I don't know if the audience of the presentation makes a difference, it most probably will be a majority of German natives.
closed as primarily opinion-based by Rand al'Thor, choster, NVZ, MetaEd♦ Aug 29 '16 at 18:14
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You should use the German word if you are only talking about Germany. The phrase "energy transition" is used to refer to similar events in other regions of the world, as a quick search indicates.
It's probably best to explain the term after you use it, since this can serve as a reminder to those who are familiar with it and define the term for those who aren't familiar.
According to The Chicago Manual of Style:
Italics are used for isolated words and phrases in a foreign language if they are likely to be unfamiliar to readers. If a foreign word becomes familiar through repeated use throughout a work, it need be italicized only on its first occurrence. If it appears only rarely, however, italics may be retained.
I'm not sure that applies to your situation, however. You should look to follow whatever style guide you have, and, failing that, check to see what similar publications are doing.
Here are examples I found.
Germany has set itself a huge challenge in trying to move away from fossil fuels and abandon nuclear power, while remaining a major industrial power. This challenge to create an Energiewende – an energy turnaround or transformation – has ambitious targets.
Achieving the so called ‘Energiewende’ is a major issue in political decision-making and public discourse.
You say you want a revolution: The “Energiewende”, the change in energy regimes in Germany, is presently not effective. The lack of integration of renewable and conventional power generation is seen as the critical factor. Chemistry and catalysis play a decisive role in solving this systemic challenge.
The German Energiewende’s potential effects on the reliability of electricity supply as well as the corresponding economic consequences have recently entered both the political and scientific debate. However, empirical evidence of power outage costs in Germany is rather scarce.
Looking at other academic publications, there's really no consensus that I can see here. Literally all of the options you were considering (and italics, as suggested in the comments) are used in scholarly publications when the term is used.