Research School for Socio-Economic and
Natural Sciences of the Environment
Research School for Socio-Economic and
Natural Sciences of the Environment

Groningen Energy Summer School "Local energy innovation for global change"

Date: 12 July 2018 - 20 July 2018
Location: Groningen

The Groningen Energy Summer School (GESS2018), held for the 7th time in 2018, will focus on Local Energy Innovations for Global Change. The Summer School takes an integrative approach to the societal and technological dimensions of the energy transition. By combining a broad range of disciplines, this event offers a unique opportunity to PhD students to become aware of different aspects of energy transition, to develop novel insights, and to learn to create synergy between approaches to the energy transition. The participants will attend lectures by specialists in the field, present their own and each other’s work, and play an active role in the discussions.

In relation to this year’s topic, ‘Local Energy Innovations for Global Change’, various innovations, ranging from the social to the technical, will be examined. Such innovations can be focal points for empowering local entrepreneurs, communities and governments as active agents in the energy transition. These innovations allow for rapid transformations of regional societies and economies, ranging from the islands of Denmark, the deserts of the American South-West and inner China, or the rural villages of India. Energy is a game changer and we are starting to notice.

A focus on local innovations enables us to ask important questions in the course of the summer school:

  • What is driving emerging technologies and social or economic forms?
  • How do these innovations relate to existing investors and companies?
  • To what extent can innovations help us out of the current impasse with regards to unsustainable energy systems?
  • How are they transforming localities and also, how do they challenge the stability of our energy system in both a social, economic and technical sense?

These questions are central in this summer school where we want to critically reflect on what innovation can mean and should mean for the energy transition.

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