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FLEXIS (Flexible Integrated Energy Systems)

This is a multi-partner, multi-million pound programme c0ordinated by Cardiff’s School of Engineering and awarded to three Welsh Universities. It is funded by the European Regional Development Fund. FLEXIS integrates social science and technical research to address issues concerning the energy systems of the future. It also forms a core part of the Cardiff University Energy Systems Research Institute. The social science research is conducted alongside that of technical colleagues to investigate lived experiences of changes to our energy systems and to also ensure that development proceeds on the model of ‘responsible innovation’: that is, building responsiveness to wider societal concerns into innovation processes. We are undertaking research around demonstrator sites with the public and community groups to set up deliberative and participatory activities as well as qualitative interviews. An important aim of the social science work programme is to deliver fundamental advances in our understanding of the ways individuals, families, and communities engage with the complexities of future integrated energy system changes, and the issues, values and framings people utilise to make sense of these. Three social sciences work-packages, led by the Understanding Risk research group, are investigating (a) flexible systems and expert visions, (b) energy system change and everyday life, and (c) communities, energy conflicts and risk governance.

Personnel:

Cardiff University (Understanding Risk) – Karen Henwood, Nick Pidgeon, Fiona Shirani and Chris Groves.

Cardiff University (School of Engineering) – Hywel Thomas, Phil Bowen, Nick Jenkins, Jianzhong Wu, Manu Haddad.

External – Alan Guwy, Andrew Maddy (University of South Wales), Andrew Barron, Petr Igic (Swansea University)

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