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UCL to play leading role in new landmark energy research centre

Two research councils announce the UK Centre for Research on Energy Demand (UKCRED), a landmark new energy research centre.

Portico

28 March 2018

A new research centre to develop and deliver internationally-leading research, focusing on energy demand from a systemic, socio-technical perspective, has been announced by two research councils, with the UCL Energy Institute playing a leading role.

Funded with £19.5 million from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the UK Centre for Research on Energy Demand (UKCRED) will bring together a world-leading and multi-disciplinary group of researchers and be led by the RCUK Energy Demand Research Champion, Professor Nick Eyre, at the University of Oxford.

UCL-Energy will lead a number of areas of research for UKCRED:

  • Professor Tadj Oreszczyn is a UKCRED co-director and will lead the buildings theme
  • Professor Bob Lowe is a UKCRED co-director and will lead the heat challenge
  • Professor David Shipworth, UKCRED Co Investigator, will lead a project as part of the Policy and Governance theme on Distributed Ledgers

UKCRED will look to lead whole systems research on energy demand in the UK. It will champion research that is inter-disciplinary and whole systems, focusing on the energy demand aspects of the transition to a secure and affordable low carbon energy system, and the existing excellent single-disciplinary and component-related research.

Professor Tadj Oreszczyn, Director of the Bartlett School of Environment, Energy & Resources at UCL, said:

I am delighted that UCL will be playing a leading role in UKCRED, an important step in solidifying Britain’s reputation as a global leader in energy systems research.

The proposed programme of research will have several themes that align well with elements of the Government’s Clean Growth Strategy, especially ‘Improving Business and Industry Efficiency’, ‘Improving our Homes’ and ‘Accelerating the Shift to Low Carbon Transport’.

The Centre involves over 40 academics at 13 institutions across the UK and Professor Eyre will be supported by a team of seven Co-Directors who have a balance of skills, covering the key energy demand sectors - buildings, transport and industry - and a wide range of disciplinary backgrounds.

Collectively they have almost 200 person years of experience in energy demand research, with an emphasis on technology, innovation and systems perspectives. The Co-Directors all have a track record of strong commitment to inter-disciplinary research. They have played leading roles in all the key research council investments in energy demand research, including the UK Energy Research Centre (UKERC) and the End Use Energy Demand (EUED) Centres.

Professor Philip Nelson, EPSRC’s Chief Executive, said:

This new Centre for Research on Energy Demand will play an important role in developing policy and practical innovations that can help the UK address energy demand over the coming decades. The inter-disciplinary nature of the research means we can get a much clearer picture of what needs to be done, both technologically and socially, to bring about change in energy use and demand. The team led by Professor Eyre are of a high calibre and I am confident they will make a big difference to the long term ambitions of the UK to meet its international obligations.

The UKCRED involves the following institutions:

  • University of Oxford
  • University of Leeds
  • University of Reading
  • UCL
  • Loughborough University
  • Lancaster University
  • The University of Manchester
  • University of Sussex
  • University of Surrey
  • LSE
  • University of Edinburgh
  • University of the West of England
  • University of York