University of Sussex
Duration of your PhD
Dr Adrian Smith and Prof Gordon MacKerron
My Thesis' Abstract
The Innovation of Community Energy Projects in Finland and the United Kingdom
This doctoral research focuses on the innovation of community energy projects in Finland and the United Kingdom. Previous comparative European-based energy research has mainly focused on large-scale projects. There has been less emphasis in comparing smaller scale, community owned projects, especially at the local level where energy can be generated and saved at the point of usage. Using concepts from socio-technical transitions theory and methods of cross-national case study, this research answers the question how do community energy innovations develop in Finland and the UK? This research examines how community energy projects develop within ‘niches’, or protected spaces, and analyses how they interact with the wider energy system (‘regime’). Research findings are expected to highlight possible similarities or differences between the chosen community energy cases, how they are developed and how they link to the dominant energy regimes. The research outcomes will be useful for citizens and intermediaries involved in the development of community energy projects, as well as academics researching the field. This DPhil research is funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and is part of a joint University of Sussex and University of East Anglia project Community Innovation for Sustainable Energy (funded by EdF Energy and EPSRC).