Community acceptability and the energy transition: a citizens' perspective

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dc.contributor.author Lennon, Breffní
dc.contributor.author Dunphy, Niall P.
dc.contributor.author Sanvicente, Estibaliz
dc.date.accessioned 2019-10-02T15:11:02Z
dc.date.available 2019-10-02T15:11:02Z
dc.date.issued 2019-09-09
dc.identifier.citation Lennon, B., Dunphy, N. P. and Sanvicente, E. (2019) 'Community acceptability and the energy transition: a citizens’ perspective', Energy, Sustainability and Society, 9(1), 35 (18 pp). doi: 10.1186/s13705-019-0218-z en
dc.identifier.volume 9 en
dc.identifier.issued 35 en
dc.identifier.startpage 1 en
dc.identifier.endpage 18 en
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10468/8682
dc.identifier.doi 10.1186/s13705-019-0218-z en
dc.description.abstract Background: Every energy transition has had its winners and its losers, both economically and in terms of social justice and community cohesion. The current transition is no different given the complex, intersecting matrices of power and experience that influence the key stakeholders and actors involved. Local oppositions to the deployment of renewable energy technologies have been significantly higher than expected. In numerous instances, these oppositions have been in reaction to the disempowerment of local rights and entitlements associated with specific developments. Consequently, there is a clear need for governance structures and organisational formats that are participatory, inclusive and mindful of the lived experiences of local people. Despite the knowledge gaps and financial constraints that continue to persist, how can local communities become empowered to drive project development and meaningfully engage in the low-carbon energy transition? Methods: This paper presents a methodology for investigating citizen perceptions of the energy transition and the kinds of roles they see themselves having in its implementation. Working with six communities across five European countries (France, Ireland, Italy, Spain, and the UK), we conducted a series of iterative cross-sectional community engagements using a mixed methods approach. In addition, a number of innovative participatory action research tools were incorporated to engage citizens in co-designing their own energy transition pathways. Results: Participants expressed having restricted agency as citizens participating in the energy system. They also felt locked in to a limiting set of false choices as ‘energy consumers’ that do not translate into real or meaningful power, despite popular narratives to the contrary. The research also resulted in a co-designed characterisation tool to help local communities assess the energy democracy and citizen participation potential of a number of participatory business models. Conclusions: Citizens remain locked out of the decision-making processes of the energy transition. We outline a more integrated approach, using co-design and participatory action research, to incorporate citizen perspectives into the planning and implementation of more appropriate business configurations. This paper presents demonstrable examples of how extended stakeholder perspectives can improve procedural justice outcomes and ensure the rollout of more equitable energy configurations into the future. en
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher BMC, Part of Springer Nature en
dc.relation.uri https://energsustainsoc.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13705-019-0218-z
dc.rights © The Author(s). 2019 Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. en
dc.rights.uri http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ en
dc.subject Energy transition en
dc.subject Cooperative mechanisms en
dc.subject Transformative social innovation en
dc.subject Sustainable communities en
dc.subject Participatory business models en
dc.subject Citizen empowerment en
dc.subject Business configurations en
dc.subject Community development en
dc.subject Community energy en
dc.title Community acceptability and the energy transition: a citizens' perspective en
dc.type Article (peer-reviewed) en
dc.internal.authorcontactother Niall Dunphy, Civil Engineering, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland. +353-21-490-3000 Email: n.dunphy@ucc.ie en
dc.internal.availability Full text available en
dc.date.updated 2019-10-02T11:10:24Z
dc.description.version Published Version en
dc.internal.rssid 499777657
dc.internal.rssid 499904064
dc.contributor.funder Horizon 2020 en
dc.description.status Peer reviewed en
dc.identifier.journaltitle Energy, Sustainability and Society en
dc.internal.copyrightchecked Yes © The Author(s). 2019 Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
dc.internal.licenseacceptance Yes en
dc.internal.IRISemailaddress n.dunphy@ucc.ie en
dc.internal.IRISemailaddress blennon@ucc.ie en
dc.identifier.articleid 35 en
dc.relation.project info:eu-repo/grantAgreement/EC/H2020::RIA/657998/EU/Energy System Transition Through Stakeholder Activation, Education and Skills Development/ENTRUST en


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© The Author(s). 2019 Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as © The Author(s). 2019 Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
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