Beyond energy services : a multidimensional and cross-disciplinary agenda for Home Energy Management research

Oliveira, Sonja and Badarnah, Lidia and Barakat, Merate and Chatzimichali, Anna and Atkins, Ed (2021) Beyond energy services : a multidimensional and cross-disciplinary agenda for Home Energy Management research. Energy Research and Social Science. ISSN 2214-6296 (

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Home Energy Management (HEM) has a significantly growing impact on strategic energy policy, digital equity, as well as housing development and transport issues. With the proliferation of home working, reliance on electricity for heating and cooling and the increasing needs for electric charging for transportation, there is an urgent need to develop novel ways for efficient management of home energy use. Current efforts focus on HEM technologies at individual household levels, without considering the social or spatial context or their collective community-wide interrelated dependencies. We propose a multifaceted agenda at the intersection of disciplinary domains to tackle this problem by using a multidimensional lens that draws on energy behaviour, architectural research, biomimetics, and computational design, simultaneously. Optimal and effective behavioural patterns can be extracted and abstracted from nature, informing a more collective and interrelated behavioural dependencies approach that considers the complex multidimensional energy use patterns of different housing typologies. This paper discusses the analytical benefits of this new research approach through a study of home energy management behaviour. The approach though could be expanded to consider other similar empirical contexts whereby sustainable multidimensional resource management is sought such as water use, food distribution as well as transport and mobility.