Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH) aspects of the Clean-Energy Transition

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Domaine de recherche :
Type de financement :
Type d'instrument :
Recherche & Innovation Action
Deadline :
Jeudi 06 Septembre 2018
Budget indicatif :
entre 1 et 3 millions d'euros par projet
Budget total :
10 millions d'euros
Code de l'appel : LC-SC3-CC-1-2018-2019-2020
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Specific Challenge:

The clean-energy transition doesn't just pose technological and scientific challenges; it also requires a better understanding of cross-cutting issues related to socioeconomic, gender, sociocultural, and socio-political issues. Addressing these issues will help to devise more effective ways of involving citizens and to better understand energy-related views and attitudes, ultimately leading to greater social acceptability as well as more durable governance arrangements and socioeconomic benefits.


In 2018, proposals should be submitted under the theme "Social innovation in the energy sector". All proposals should adopt a comparative perspective, with case studies or data from at least three European Union Member States or Associated Countries.

2018: Social innovation[1] in the energy sector: The energy transition has given rise to various forms of social innovation, such as the emergence of energy cooperatives or that of energy "prosumers" consuming but also producing energy. Urban areas have emerged as major hubs for these trends, given the close proximity between citizens, businesses and institutions, facilitating linkages between sectors and the emergence of new business and service models, as well as associated governance arrangements. These issues need to be studied in more detail, with a particular focus on the following questions:

  • What characterizes successful examples of social innovation in the energy sector?
  • What enabling conditions facilitate social innovation in the energy sector and how can it be encouraged? What factors work against it?
  • In what way does social innovation contribute to the preservation of livelihoods and the development of new business and service models in the energy sector?
  • In what way does social innovation contribute to making energy more secure, sustainable and affordable? Does social innovation lead to greater competitiveness and if so, how?
  • Under what conditions does social innovation lead to greater acceptance of the transition towards a low-carbon energy system?

Expected Impact:

The proposed research will:

  • provide a better understanding of socioeconomic, gender, sociocultural, and socio-political factors and their interrelations with technological, regulatory, and investment-related aspects, in support of the goals of the Energy Union and particularly its research and innovation pillar;[2]
  • yield practical recommendations for using the potential of social innovation to further the goals of the Energy Union, namely, to make Europe's energy system more secure, sustainable, competitive, and affordable for Europe's citizens;
  • yield practical recommendations for addressing the challenges of the clean-energy transition for Europe's coal and carbon-intensive regions, including socioeconomic and political ones.