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Symposium on Sub-National Government and Paths to Sustainable Energy

Speaker list and programme enclosed
Thursday 15th May 2014 - 10:30am
Glamorgan Building Council Chamber

The creation of sustainable, secure and socially just energy systems requires action from a multiplicity of actors: public and private sectors, state and civil society, and all levels of government. Within this mix, to what extent is sub-national government - regional governement, state-level government or other arrangements of devolved or decentralised political power - proving to be an important component?

The growing salience of sustainable energy and moves for political decentralisation and devolution is prompting growing research interest at this interface, and this symposium brings together an array of researchers from across the social sciences to share their ideas and knowledge. Key issues include:

  • How have sub-national governments acted to shape energy agendas? How is action within their territory linked to action in other arenas (among publics, cities, national government, Europe)?
  • How has re-scaling of the state (devolution, decentralisation, or even centralisation) impacted on patterns of energy development? Conversley, how have energy controversies affected debates about the allocatoin of powers between governmental tiers?
  • How have territorial politicis intersected with environmental politics, and with what effects? Is (party) politics relevant to any divergent pathways we observe?
  • How, and in what conditions, have sub-national governments moved faster towareds sustainable energy than the national government 'above' them? What can we learn from the leaders?
  • What theoretical approaches are effective in interpreting the effects of sub-national governmnet on policy change in the energy sphere? Can progress be read off from the powers formally allocated to sub-national government, or is a wider excplanation required?


Thursday 15th May 2014

10:30 - 10:45 Registration/Coffee

10:45 - 11:00 Welcome reception (Richard Cowell)

11:00 - 13:00 Session 1

Energy policies for a transition from fossil fuels to energy conservation and 100% renewable energy

Frede Hvelplund (Aalborg University, Denmark)

Local Enterprise Partnerships and the low-carbon economy: a review of progress

Jessica Britton (Exeter University)

Colder, wetter, windier - is Scotland more receptive to distrtict heating in England?

David Hawkey and Janette Webb (University of Edinburgh)

Renewable energy in the UK  a case of undevolution?

David Toke (University of Aberdeen)

13:00 - 13:45 Buffet Lunch

13:45 - 15:45 Session 2

Are 'Powers' Enough? Understandint the pathway of renewable energy in Northern Ireland

Geraint Ellis (Queens University Belfast)

Rural Electrification in a period of changing governance

Fionnguala Sherry-Brennan and Peter Pearson (Cardiff University)

Empowered for action? Capacities and constraints in sub-state government climate action in Scotland and Wales

Elin Royles (Aberystwyth University) and Nicola McEwen (University of Edinburgh)

Sub-national governments and regional path creation: the promotion of offshore wind in North East England and Scotland

Danny McKinnon and Stuart Dawley

15:45 - 16:15 Coffee break

16:15 - 18:15 Session 3

Retrofit in Greater Manchester: Governing ON, IN and WITH

Mike Hodson and Simon Marvin (Salford University)

Energy System Change: Public perspectives from Wales and Scotland

Christina Demski (Cardiff University)

Renewable energy, assest-based management and communities: the roles of ownership and management in determining outputs and outcomes

Geoff Whittam and Mike Danson (University of the West of Scotland), George Callaghan (The Open University in Scotland)

Governance for the low carbon transition: mapping the devolution of powers

Thomas Muinzer (Queens University Belfast)

Friday 16th May

9:15 - 10:45 Session 4

Exploring the role of sub-national government in the transition to sustainable energy: evidence from the retrofit of the built environments in Wales

Carla De Laurentis, Malcome Eames and Miriam Hunt (Cardiff University)

Dispute, discontent and displacement: exploring the intersections between discourse and scale in the governance of renewable energy

Mike Lennon and Mark Scott (University College Dublin)

England: delivering renewable energy after devolution

Fionnguala Sherry-Brennan (Cardiff University)

10:45 - 11:15 Coffee Break

11:15 - 13:15 Session 5

Freiburg: 'Green City' or energy efficient neighbourhoods? Towards a justified localism in energy transition research

Philipp Spath (University of Freiburg, Germany)

Bottom-up versus top down new technological path creation in renewable energy: a comparison of the development of wind power technologies in Britain and Germany

James Simmie (Oxford Brookes University), Rolf Sternberg (Leibniz Univbersity) and Juliet Carpenter (Universite de Lyon)

Resisting, refining or recasting energy transitions? The Welsh Government and its struggle with renewable energy

Richard Cowell (Cardiff University)

13:15 - 14:15 Buffet lunch and closing remarks