National Centre for Energy Systems Integration

Event Items

CESI Facilitated Group Discussion: Interdisciplinary Research for Energy Systems Integration

This discussion event will consider the opportunities and challenges involved in interdisciplinary energy research.

Date/Time: Thursday 28th February, 09:30-12:00

Venue: Newcastle University, Armstrong Building, Room G.69

There is increasing support for interdisciplinary whole systems research in the UK energy sector. Combining different research disciplines and working across academic-stakeholder divides promises more rounded, robust and relevant research, and the National Centre for Energy Systems Integration (CESI) has a distinctive commitment to such research.

In practice, interdisciplinary whole systems research faces a number of challenges: managing diverse knowledge bases across different disciplines, developing integrative research designs and outputs, and striking an appropriate balance between academic independence and stakeholder collaboration. There are also opportunities for shared learning about the common challenges of whole systems energy research across a number of different initiatives, in the UK and beyond.

Workshop overview

This short workshop is being run as part of a CESI Flex Fund project on understanding and promoting good practice in interdisciplinary energy research. It will consider the opportunities and challenges involved, and how they are being addressed within CESI and beyond. The issues covered will include: 

  • Is working with other disciplines an important part of your research work and research outputs? If so, in what ways?
  • What do you see as the main drivers and barriers for interdisciplinary research (in CESI, and more generally)? 
  • In which parts of CESI has interdisciplinarity been more or less successful, to date? (e.g. within projects, within workpackages, across the Centre as a whole, in stakeholder engagement activities, etc.).
  • Do you have any suggestions for improved ways of interdisciplinary working, in CESI or more generally?

The discussion will be facilitated and introduced by Dr Mark Winskel, University of Edinburgh and Dr Matthew Hannon, University of Strathclyde, who will share their insights in interdisciplinary energy systems research.   

We are interested in hearing the views of all CESI investigators and researchers (RAs) at this event. Your views will:

  • feed into the next stages of our research
  • contribute to the good practice guidelines we are developing as a key output from the Flex Fund project.

Later events will involve energy researchers and stakeholders drawn more widely from across the UK. 

The workshop is scheduled to be immediately before the CESI Workshop: Multi-criteria decision analysis.  We hope that those attending the afternoon workshop will join us in the morning for the group discussion. The discussion will be recorded to help inform the rest of the research project. All contributions will be anonymised in any publications arising. 

About the Workshop Leaders

Dr Mark Winskel is Chancellor's Research Fellow on Energy Innovation Science, Technology and Innovation Studies at the University of Edinburgh,  He was previously national Co-ordinator for the UK Energy Research Centre (UKERC) and is now Policy Director for ClimateXChange, Scotland’s national Centre of Expertise on Climate Change.

Dr Matthew Hannon is Senior Lecturer at the University of Strathclyde's Business School.  He was previously a member of the RCUK Energy Strategy Fellowship team and is now a Co-Investigator with the recently-launched Energy REV consortium.

How to find us

Directions to the Armstrong Building


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