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State projects, institutional entanglements and energy-carbon transitions

Wednesday 14 February 2018, 16.00-17.15
School of Earth and Environment seminar rooms 8.119
Dr Will Eadson, Senior Research Fellow, CRESR, Sheffield Hallam University
Sustainability seminar hosted by SRI


Across the global North, governments are engaged in restructuring around the increasingly linked agendas of carbon management and energy security. These agendas are characterised by complexity, uncertainty and all-pervasiveness. To meet these goals, governments necessarily implement programmes to enrol a range of institutions, institutional spaces and individuals to act on energy-carbon transitions. Enrolling territorial subjects and objects raises significant challenges for government, including dealing with path-dependencies created by existing socio-technical societal, economic and infrastructural configurations; and developing specific means to (re)construct objects and enrol subjects on energy-carbon goals.

This seminar will look at how these processes have begun to unfold over the last decade, with a particular focus on the actions of the UK government to enrol and construct different geographically defined “policy objects” to act on linked carbon reduction and energy policy goals. After opening with a broad thematic overview, the second half of the seminar will then move onto a more in-depth discussion of the UK Community Energy Strategy, opening up discussion of the policy process and the entangled relationship between state objectives, markets and civil society. This leads into a more reflexive conclusion about how we research and think about policy processes and the actors involved.


Will Eadson is a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research (CRESR), Sheffield Hallam University. He has worked in policy research since 2004, on research projects for research councils, local, regional and national government, charities and housing bodies. His central research interests lay around urban environmental sustainability, with particular interest in the position of local economies and people that might be vulnerable or exposed to changes in policy or the economic value of environmental externalities such as carbon emissions. This includes longstanding interests in local energy transitions as well as fuel poverty and domestic energy efficiency. Other research interests include urban green infrastructure; urban air quality; sub-national governance; and local economic development.

Directions to the Venue

School of Earth and Environment Seminar Rooms (8.119). At the Earth and Environment Reception take the door on the right-hand side. The Seminar Rooms are immediately on the left.

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