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Enabling the Energy Union through understanding the drivers of individual and collective energy choices in Europe (ENABLE.EU)
Start date: Nov 1, 2016, End date: Oct 31, 2019 PROJECT  ONGOING 

The Energy Union Framework Strategy laid out on 25 February 2015 has embraced a citizens-oriented energy transition based on a low-carbon transformation of the energy system. The success of the energy transition pillar in the Energy Union will hinge upon the social acceptability of the necessary reforms and on the public engagement in conceptualizing, planning, and implementing low carbon energy transitions. The ENABLE.EU project will aim to define the key determinants of individual and collective energy choices in three key consumption areas - transportation, heating & cooling, and electricity – and in the shift to prosumption (users-led initiatives of decentralised energy production and trade). The project will also investigate the interrelations between individual and collective energy choices and their impact on regulatory, technological and investment decisions. The analysis will be based on national household and business surveys in 11 countries, as well as research-area-based comparative case studies. ENABLE.EU aims to also strengthen the knowledge base for energy transition patterns by analysing existing public participation mechanisms, energy cultures, social mobilisation, scientists’ engagement with citizens. Gender issues and concerns regarding energy vulnerability and affluence will be given particular attention. The project will also develop participatory-driven scenarios for the development of energy choices until 2050 by including the findings from the comparative sociological research in the E3ME model created by Cambridge Econometrics and used extensively by DG Energy. The findings from the modelling exercise will feed into the formulation of strategic and policy recommendations for overcoming the gaps in the social acceptability of the energy transition and the Energy Union plan. Results will be disseminated to relevant national and EU-level actors as well as to the general public.

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