Researchers perception regarding socio-technical approaches implementation in their own research. Thermal energy storage researchers as example
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The enhancement and the understanding of the societal dynamics in the energy systems within transition entails the inclusion of innovative policy and research strategies. This inclusion raises several questions that change profoundly the nature of the research and innovation endeavour, questions that have not been sufficiently explored in the literature. These questions are, among others, the complexities an scope of socio-technical integration or the emergence of new roles and patterns such as user-inspired innovations or community innovations. Based on the assumptions of the responsible-based approaches advocating to energy system actors to collaborate sharing responsibility and the benefits that perspectives integration brings in the development of proactive and archivable energy and climate policies, this study analyses a group of researchers within the field of thermal energy storage (TES) for renewable energy applications, for the purpose of evaluating their perception regarding to the inclusion of alternative policy proposals and collaborative research strategies. The proposed methodology was based on the use of the common theoretical backgrounds of socio-technical transition for the construction of an responsibility-based approach and the proposal of a survey tool for gathering the empirical evidence from researchers opinions. The survey data was collected from a representative group of researchers (33 countries, 215 targeted researches completing the surveys at 31% with a final N = 72). Findings shows willingness to include citizens as beneficiaries but not as participants of research decisions, the prevalence of the use of social sciences to increase the acceptance of technology and remarkable unawareness regarding collaborative research strategies. This paper brings an important contribution for the selected researchers that can be extrapolate to other energy communities since illuminates the possibility of adapting and asses TES to include new patterns and new governance strategies based in RRI.
Is part ofRenewable & Sustainable Energy Reviews, 2021, vol. 143, p. 110936-1-110936-17
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