Public opposition to energy infrastructure projects is a significant limiting factor to successful mass deployment of renewable technologies.

Project Insights

  • €354,721

    Total Project Costs
  • 3 yr

    Project Duration
  • 2018

    Year Funded

Project Description

EnergyPOLITIES will develop an in-depth understanding of citizen participation in the energy transition, the socio-economic and socio-cultural factors which shape it, and the intersections between these and the governance frameworks within which decisions are made. This will involve an initial mapping of current patterns of citizen engagement with the energy system, from active consumers to social mobilisation, and from political campaigners to members of community energy projects. This mapping will form the basis of a typology of citizen participation, which will link specific forms of participation to the governance structures which condition them and the sociodemographic characteristics of citizens. This typology will subsequently be applied in an in-depth analysis of three case studies of energy projects (two Irish and one mainland EU) that have stimulated significant citizen participation. Integrating both quantitative and qualitative methods, the case studies will reveal linkages between political, institutional and organisational frameworks and citizen participation in the energy system. EnergyPOLITIES will explore how governance structures intersect with the socio-economic and key socio-cultural factors, including gender, to influence the social acceptability or otherwise of energy infrastructure projects. The business models deployed in each project will be analysed from the perspective of their impact on inclusiveness, gender, democracy and social acceptability; stakeholders' perceptions of distributional and procedural justice will be explored. Recommendations will be developed for how multi-level governance structures, and business models can support inclusive citizen participation and thereby enhance the social acceptability of the energy transition.

Project Details

Total Project Cost: €354,721

Funding Agency: SEAI

Year Funded: 2018

Lead Organisation: University College Cork

Niall Dunphy

Lead Researcher

Expertise: Social; Engaged; Community; Sustainability; Energy;

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