Behavioural changes necessary in the transition to fossil-free energy systems2023-09-04
- We need more knowledge of how to encourage people to more easily change their behaviour to reduce energy consumption, says Per Kristensson, professor of psychology at the Service Research Center (CTF).
A safe, reliable and sustainable future requires a transition to fossil-free energy systems. This means an increase in the proportion of renewable energy sources such as solar, hydro and wind energy, which brings new challenges in terms of storage, energy transmission and flexibility. In order to achieve redistribution of people’s electric energy consumption, there have to be significant changes in behaviour – which is the focus of the project “Raising awareness – behavioural barriers and drivers of demand response among single-family homeowners".
- It has been noted, for example, that increased energy prices have made consumers think carefully about their energy consumption, for example by lowering the in-house temperature, switching off or reducing the use of unnecessary heating and using the washing machine at times when there is lower energy demand, says Per Kristensson. More and more people are also actively looking to find ways to reduce their energy consumption.
With the help of an interdisciplinary group and methods from behavioural science research and design thinking, the project will conduct scientifically based behavioural diagnosis and identify testable solutions and strategies that promote demand response (meaning that consumers adapt their energy consumption and use to times when the demand and price are lower) among single-family homeowners in Sweden.
Technical solutions are key in this type of research – why is that?
- Digital solutions, such as mobile apps, enable people to better monitor their energy consumption.
What implications could this project have for electricity consumers?
- We want to help consumers change their behaviour with simple means in a way that favours the transition to fossil-free energy systems.
The project ““Raising awareness – behavioural barriers and drivers of demand response among single-family homeowners” is a collaboration project between Karlstad University, Nordic Behaviour Group, Skellefteå Kraft and Studio Berget divided into five blocks and running over a period of eight months.
The project will also result in a public report that presents concrete recommendations for the energy industry, single-family homeowners and policy makers. In addition, the project will be presented in a scientific paper.