Articles and Conference Papers

 

Heiskanen, E., Johnson, M. & Vadovics, E. (2009). Creating Lasting Change in Energy Use Patterns through Improved User Involvement. Joint Actions on Climate Change, Aalborg, June 9-10, 2009.

For energy experts and energy intermediaries, energy efficiency is the most logical thing in the world. Unfortunately, energy end-users rarely see the world in the same way. For energy end-users, energy use is often ‘invisible' and rarely the subject of conscious decision. Thus, getting to know the end-user target group and finding the best ways to engage users are key issues for energy demand-side practitioners. We draw on data collected in CHANGING BEHAVIOUR to explore user involvement in energy change.

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Heiskanen, E. & Rask, M. (2008). From Sociotechnical Theory to Sociotechnical Practice: An Action Research Project. Proceedings of the 2nd Conference of the Sustainable Consumption Research Exchange (SCORE!) Network Sustainable Consumption and Production: Framework for Action. Refereed sessions 5 : pp. 3-16.

This paper describes a recently launched research European project called CHANGING BEHAVIOUR, which focuses on energy demand management programmes and the kind of information they need to change the behaviour of their target groups. More details about this project and its partners are available at the website www.energychange.info. The aim of the paper is to flesh out some of the assumptions underlying the project and to envision some of the challenges involved in implementing it.

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Backhaus, J. (2010)  Intermediaries as Innovating Actors in the Transition to a Sustainable Energy System. Central European Journal of Public Policy 4 (1): 86-109.

This article examines the role of intermediaries as implementers of demand-side management projects. Research into the reasons of successes and failures of intermediary work and a theoretical corroboration for their practical work can help intermediaries to improve their programme designs and implementation strategies. Paying more attention to context, stakeholders, monitoring, evaluation and learning enables the development of tailor-made, widely supported projects with higher chances of success. In addition to practical support for their work, intermediaries can benefit from stronger policy support.

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Heiskanen, E., Johnson, M., Robinson, S., Vadovics, E. & Saastamoinen, M. Low-Carbon Communities as a Context for Individual Change. Energy Policy, Articles in press.

This article analyses different types of emerging low-carbon communities as a context for individual behavioural change. The focus is on how these communities offer solutions to problems in previous attempts to change individual behaviour. On the basis of an analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of various community solutions, implications are drawn for further research and for the design and support of low-carbon communities. Full paper: Heiskanen, E., Johnson, M., Robinson, S.

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Backhaus, J., Mourik, R. & Breukers, S. (2010). Learning in single & double loops - interaction as key to scientific & practical insights. Paper presented at the EASST conference 2010, 2nd-4th September 2010, Trento, Italy.

This paper addresses the learning process involved in one of the CHANGING BEHAVIOUR pilot projects - the renovation of large multi-apartment building blocks in Latvia. This pilot project aims to increase the number of residents in support of increasing the energy efficiency of their building. The role of the intermediary in this case is that of an energy advisor that provides clear, transparent and relevant information to residents and that supports their decision-making process by improving stakeholder interaction.

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Research Note 1: Glossary of Intermediaries

This first research note of the CHANGING BEHAVIOUR project by Mike Hodson and Simon Marvin from SURF Centre discusses the strategic role of intermediary organisations in transforming the intensity, timing and level of energy use. Two different modes of energy intermediation are identified: 'project' and 'systemic' intermediaries. The paper also outlines the conditions for ‘active and transformative’ intermediation.  Research_Note_1_2008 (93.18 kB)  

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Research Note 2: Rating Expert Advice for How to Change Energy Behaviour

There is a wide literature on 'tools' and methods to change energy-related behaviour. This literature is reviewed in D5: Interaction Schemes for Successful Energy Demand Management. But how appropriate are these tools for intermediaries promoting energy efficiency and energy conservation on the local level? The CHANGING BEHAVIOUR team has rated 19 of the most widely discussed tools. Our partners have pooled their experience to give their views on "what works where and for whom"

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Breukers, S.,  Backhaus, J., Mourik, R., Hodson, M., Marvin, S. & Brohmann, B. (2010). PRACTICING LEARNING AND LEARNING IN PRACTICE. Testing learning tools for energy demand side management projects. Proceedings of ERSCP/EMSU 2010.

The history of energy demand side management (DSM) shows that accomplishing lasting energy-behavioural changes is difficult. The CHANGING BEHAVIOUR project aims at a better understanding of energy-related behavioural change, in order to improve DSM practice. The approach is one of continuous interaction between researchers and energy intermediaries (organisations implementing DSM projects at the micro-level). This collaborative project involves the development of ‘learning tools’ that help intermediaries improve their understanding of the context in which they work and their own role in the process.

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Rask, M., Heiskanen, E., Mourik, R. M. & Feenstra, Feenstra, C.F.J. (2008). The role of timing in the success of energy saving programmes. Paper presented at the Sustainable Consumption Conference, Corvinus University, Budapest, October 8, 2008.

Timing is an activity that brings together multiple elements at a particular point in time. In the context of energy saving programmes, timing includes processes and strategies whereby the programme interacts with changes in its context. This paper presents examples of the impact of timing, and suggests a framework for conceptualising the role of timing in managing energy systems change. Some practitioners might argue that timing is an issue of “luck” and that it cannot be influenced.

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Heiskanen, E., Hodson, M., Kallaste, T., Maier, P., Marvin, S., Mourik, R., Rinne, S., Saastamoinen, M. & Vadovics, E.(2009) A rose by any other name...? New contexts and players in European energy efficiency programmes. In Act, Innovate, Deliver. Proceedings of the eceee 2009 Summer Study. Stockholm: European Council for an Energy Efficient Economy. pp. 247-257.

The paper discusses the diversity of ways in which new energy intermediaries in old and new member states of the EU are working to promote energy efficiency. We analyse the merits of ‘nesting’ energy efficiency within a broader climate or sustainability agenda. This broader agenda provides some advantages for the promotion of energy efficiency, but also some special challenges. Full paper:Heiskanen, E., Hodson, M., Kallaste, T., Maier, P., Marvin, S., Mourik, R.

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