The Energy and Society Network hosts a range of excellent, social science led research projects on energy. Energy and Society Network members are at the cutting edge of social science research on energy. Our research is breaking new ground, bringing novel ideas and perspectives to the ways we understand energy governance, energy transitions, energy demand, and energy data.

Person looking at a mobile solar panel

We bring a global dimension to energy research - with projects addressing questions of energy justice, access and governance in the UK and Europe, as well as sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia - and we collaborate with research partners across the UK, Europe, sub Saharan Africa and South Asia.

Our research projects are clustered around five key themes:


Urban Energy Governance

This strand of research examines the changing relationships across the different scales of energy systems, with a particular focus on the urban / city/community and regional levels. Research questions include the roles played by central and devolved state actors in energy systems and how cities govern their energy systems and manage change.


Energy System Transitions

Energy system transformation is at the heart of efforts to decarbonise economic and societal activity. We draw on intellectual tools from innovation studies and other social sciences to analyse the social and technical drivers of change and how these interact over time to shape new energy system pathways.


Energy Demand Managment

Through a number of projects - involving collaborations with the University of Edinburgh's College of Engineering and School of Informatics, as well as with partners like Community Energy Scotland - we are analysing the effectiveness of novel interventions to reduce and manage energy demand.


Energy and International Development

A number of research projects explore the challenges presented by low carbon energy technologies and transitions in south Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. Located in social anthropology. These projects focus on the material technologies, social relationships, and financial flows that are transforming cultures of energy in contexts of global poverty.