Environmental Change Institute, University of Oxford

Our research addresses the necessary transition to secure, low-environmental-impact and equitable energy systems. We research current patterns and potential futures of technologies, skills, activities, knowledge, markets, policy and governance. We specialise in energy use in buildings and transport systems and our focus is on energy demand and the integration of renewable energy.

RESEARCH THEMES

Our work is organised into themes, with some research projects listed under more than one theme.

Energy Systems and Governance

Focuses on major changes to whole energy systems, including the way they are organized and how decisions are made. Led by Nick Eyre.

Projects +

Energy Demand Policy

Focuses on existing and potential policies to reduce energy demand, including work on equity and fuel poverty issues. Led by Tina Fawcett.

Projects +

Energy Monitoring and Analytics

Focuses on developments in energy and environmental monitoring.

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Flexibility

Focuses on ways to balance supply and demand, including storage, demand response, networks and generation.

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Smart systems and everyday life

Focuses on human dimensions of energy systems, including human-technology interfaces, the relationship between everyday practices and energy use, decision-making, social learning and the role of ICT. Led by Sarah Darby.

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Builders and Buildings

Focuses on the practices and processes of innovation in the construction industry, and its potential role in delivering and maintaining low-energy buildings. Led by Gavin Killip.

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Energy, Organisations and Society

Focuses on the dual role of organisations as energy consumers and as providers of energy-consuming goods and services.

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Transport and Mobility

Focuses on reduced energy consumption, behavioural change and socio-technical transitions towards low-carbon, clean and energy efficient transport systems. Led by Christian Brand across ECI/TSU.

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CREDS – Research to transform the energy demand landscape

Energy news

18/10/22 18 October 2022 -
Image: Alex Yeung / Adobe Stock
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Why the 'energy price cap' is confusing - and how it could be better communicated If you thought energy bills in Britain were capped at £2,500, you are not alone. Even Prime Minister Liz Truss recently made the same mistake, incorrectly claiming that no household would pay more. What Britain has actually done, in common with many other countries facing an energy crisis this winter, is cap the price of units of energy - the amount you pay per watt of electricity or gas. Dr Sam Hampton explores the issue in a recent article in The Conversation.
05/10/22 5 October 2022 -
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Shining a light on energy's zero carbon future In a new film and long read article, the Oxford Martin School explores how its Programme on Integrating Renewable Energy has been working towards a future for the energy system that is not just about reaching net zero, but that is about delivering a high quality of life for everyone: a future with clean and efficient transport, affordable domestic energy, and life-enhancing benefits. The programme's interdisciplinary team includes several researchers from SoGE.
24/08/22 28 August 2022 -
Image: Nick Eyre
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From OPEC to Net Zero and still optimistic: Professor Nick Eyre on 34 years as an environmentalist An environmental campaigner for over 30 years and advisor to two Prime Ministers, Professor Nick Eyre is surprisingly buoyant in the circumstances. He laughs easily and maintains he is an optimist because the alternative is too depressing.
27/05/22 27 May 2022 -
Image: ZERO Institute
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New cross-sector sustainable energy transition hub opens with energy crisis forum On Thursday 26 May Oxford University's brand new £3.25m Zero-carbon Energy Research Oxford (ZERO) Institute and Energy Systems Accelerator pilot (Mini-TESA) opened their doors to showcase the range and depth of ambition in Oxford to drive forward the energy systems transition for the UK and globally.

Research outputs

Pathways to a zero carbon Oxfordshire

Tackling climate change has become an urgent priority for governments, businesses and citizens around the world. In 2019, the UK Parliament passed legislation committing to a target of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. In response, local authorities around the country have been scaling up their ambitions to tackle climate change. In Oxfordshire, all local authorities have acknowledged and responded to the climate emergency, and are developing plans to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 or sooner.

  • 2021

The role of energy demand reduction in achieving net-zero in the UK

The study brings together 17 energy demand modelling experts from within CREDS to provide extensive detail on the possibilities to reduce energy demand in every sector. These sectoral reductions in energy demand are brought together into a whole-system modelling approach, to understand the potential contribution of energy demand reduction to support climate action in the UK.

  • 2021

Latest publications

More publications

Lower Carbon Futures Team photo

Energy Programme staff

Dr Labib AzzouzDr Labib AzzouzResearch Associate in Transport and Energy Innovation
Dr Nick BanksDr Nick BanksPostdoctoral Researcher in Local Energy Systems
Dr Jake BarnesDr Jake BarnesResearcher
Dr Brenda BoardmanDr Brenda BoardmanEmeritus Research Fellow
Dr Yekatherina BobrovaDr Yekatherina BobrovaResearch Associate in Energy Demand Reduction Policy
Dr Christian BrandDr Christian BrandAssociate Professor in Transport, Energy and Environment
Dr Martin BurgessDr Martin BurgessResearch Associate in Circular Economy, Digitalisation and Net-Zero Transitions
Dr Sarah DarbyDr Sarah DarbyEmerita Research Fellow
Dr James DixonDr James DixonResearcher in Modelling Energy and Transport Systems
 Clare Downing Clare DowningCentre Manager (CREDS)
Professor Nick EyreProfessor Nick EyreProfessor of Energy and Climate Policy
Dr Tina FawcettDr Tina FawcettSenior Researcher and Associate Professor
Dr Sam HamptonDr Sam HamptonResearcher
 Hannah Harris Hannah HarrisWebsite and Communication Officer (CREDS)
 Kay Jenkinson Kay JenkinsonKnowledge Exchange Officer (Business and Policy) (CREDS)
Dr Gavin KillipDr Gavin KillipResearcher
 Kate Kwok Kate KwokProgramme Administrator (CREDS)
Dr Tedd Moya MoseDr Tedd Moya MoseResearch Assistant
 Uttara Narayan Uttara NarayanResearcher in Energy Demand and Racial Justice
Dr Colin NoldenDr Colin NoldenResearcher in the Politics of Energy Demand
 Polly Nuttgens Polly NuttgensAdministrator - Leverhulme Centre for Nature Recovery and ECI Energy Programme
Dr Hazel PettiforDr Hazel PettiforSenior Research Associate
 Anne L Ryan Anne L RyanOxford Energy Network Co-ordinator
 Anuja Saunders Anuja SaundersEDI Manager, CREDS
Dr Katherine SugarDr Katherine SugarResearch Associate in the Governance of Net Zero
Dr Emilie VrainDr Emilie VrainSenior Research Associate
 Sarah Wakeling Sarah WakelingCREDS Centre Administrator and Administrator for OEN
 Heather Waller Heather WallerProgramme Administrator - Oxford Net Zero
Professor Charlie WilsonProfessor Charlie WilsonLeader, Energy Research Programme
Professor of Energy and Climate Change

Doctoral research

Kerry Constabile

Urban 100% Renewable Energy Pathways: Assessing the drivers that shift grids from Brown to Green

Supervisor: Prof. Nick Eyre

Bill Finnegan

Education in the climate emergency: Smart grids, digital storytelling and the quest for net-zero schools in the UK

Supervisors: Dr Sarah Darby; Dr Tina Fawcett

Anca Mihalache

Time-varying electricity tariffs policy design: an integrated approach

Supervisors: Dr Sarah Darby; Prof. Nick Eyre

Samuel Miller McDonald

Egalitarian Energy: Challenges to Neoliberal Discourse in Distributed Community Energy Programs

Supervisors: Prof. Nick Eyre; Dr Aoife Brophy

Oxford University Energy Network
Oxford University Climate Network