Behaviour change and consumer engagement
The networks' transition over the coming decade needs to take place in a way which considers the impact on all consumers, especially those considered vulnerable, as well as businesses. Consumers and their representatives must have a real voice when it comes to developing our networks. Regulation and governance should be flexible, responding quickly to changes and disruption while protecting and advancing consumers' interests. Those who cannot respond flexibly, or who struggle to engage in these markets, need to be protected while reducing economic exclusion and, instead, promoting inclusive growth.
Several workshops recognised that human behaviour presents a challenge to decarbonisation, and that behavioural change will be needed to speed up the transition. More should be done to understand consumer preferences and make the transition socially acceptable and valuable – taking into account the growing complexity, technical challenges, structural changes and new technologies that will be needed and which will alter the relationship between consumers and the networks. The energy sector and government at all levels can work together to ensure that this happens.