Design of the energy transition

Designing the energy transition, in terms of ‘comprehensive engineering’ is fundamental for the functioning of our society in the coming decades. However, no comprehensive methods exist to come to appropriate designs of such complex, large/multi-scale, multi-carrier, multi-actor, multi-infrastructure, value-laden systems. Very many socio-technical scenarios are feasible under different sets of assumptions. Different kinds of uncertainties (policy, decision, systemic, normative etc.) limit, on a fundamental level, what comprehensive designs are ‘good’. “It depends”, no longer suffices, we need to be precise and specific about what are promising strategies for the energy transition.

In this research theme, we take a value perspective. Values refer to enduring or long-lasting (plural) beliefs about what is good or desirable. Taking a value perspective therefore offers a comprehensive view of the range of challenges caused by the energy transition. Quantitative methods (e.g. simulations models, text-mining approaches) can help to design for values. These methods are all present at TPM but so far, developed in silos. We aim to integrate these methods in a multi-modelling design framework. This framework, including the supporting tools (hardware, software), enable us to set up, execute, and study testable designs that integrates those methods within a comprehensive view on the energy transition.

The theme leader for this theme is Tristan de Wildt. For more information or questions about this theme, please contact him.