CICERO - Center for International Climate Research
Energy Food and forests Climate finance Local Solutions China The Arctic ​International Climate Policy

Enabling a change of energy behavior

This project seeks to enable people of the European Union to go even greener - in transportation, heating and cooling, and electricity choices - by understanding the drivers of our energy choices. 


  • The Energy Union Framework Strategy is designed to foster a cost-efficient energy transition able to deliver secure, sustainable and affordable energy to all European consumers.
  • It is aimed at a citizen-oriented energy transition based on a low-carbon transformation of the energy system.
  • The project seeks to understand what determines people’s choices in three key consumption areas: transportation, heating & cooling, and electricity.
  • The successful implementation of the Energy Union will materialize in a change in energy production and energy consumption choices.


  • To identify the key factors of energy choices in three areas: transport, heating and cooling, and electricity.
  • To better grasp the interactions between individual and collective energy choices and the regulatory, technological and investment prerequisites of the Energy Union transition pillar.
  • To look at the social acceptability of energy transitions using a participatory foresight and assessment process engaging key stakeholders and selected households.
  • To increase the knowledge of governance and social mobilisation practices that encourage collective energy choices in line with the Energy Union objectives
  • To provide strategic policy recommendations to increase the social acceptability of energy transitions.


  • EU, national and local policy makers to foster a swifter, cheaper, fairer and more democratic energy transition in line with Energy Union objectives.
  • National and international business and branch associations, interest groups and non-governmental organisations in the field of energy policies to provide an overview of the drivers influencing transition to clean energy.
  • Researchers (especially those dealing with the transition to clean energy) to better understand the drivers of energy choices for future research in the sector.
  • Other projects funded by FP7, Horizon 2020, Energy Programme, or Structural Funds, so that research findings can be fed into policy scenarios, horizon scanning and policy models.
  • The wider public to empower them in new, innovative ways so that they can help shape the transition to clean energy, ensuring that future energy transitions are truly inclusive and participatory.


  • Literature review of existing qualitative and quantitative studies, and a meta-analysis of energy organisations and social mobilisation experiences.
  • Investigation of technological, economic and social factors affecting individual energy choices and behaviours, as well as social mobilisation and governance factors that influence the social acceptability of energy transition.
  • Participatory foresight exercises, focusing on how to change energy choices and behaviours to support the full-scale transition to a low carbon economy.
  • Reference and policy scenarios, assessed using quantitative modelling and compared with the current long-term energy targets of the EC.
  • Series of policy recommendations formulated and disseminated to policy makers.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 727524.