A new information hub led by EVALUATE project researchers extends the reach and impact of existing research
This week saw the official launch of the European Energy Poverty Observatory (EPOV) – a new initiative supported by the European Union, aimed at providing a public hub for the gathering and dissemination of information on the extent and nature of domestic energy deprivation in Europe. The Observatory will collect and publish Europe-wide energy poverty data while serving as the focal point of an emergent network of policy-makers, research scientists, advocacy groups and community activists interested in the issue. It will aim to improve the state of the art on energy poverty detection, measurement and reporting by creating a public forum for the exchange of knowledge on the issue.
The Observatory is part of a growing drive to consolidate energy policy at the level of the European Union, reflected in the recent Energy Union and Clean Energy Package proposals. It is thus expected that the EPOV will become a decision-support tool for the significant amount of new European Union-wide energy policy, regulation and legislation that will be developed in the near future.
The Observatory itself is a vast organization, comprising a consortium of 13 universities, research institutes, companies and advocacy groups. More than 100 internationally-renowned experts are involved in its work via these organizations and EPOV’s independent Advisory Board.
The University of Manchester leads EPOV; Dr Harriet Thomson is its Project Manager and Professor Stefan Bouzarovski is the Observatory’s Chair. Both Stefan and Harriet are currently also heavily involved in the EVALUATE project, which means that EPOV directly builds on and extends EVALUATE’s findings. This particularly refers to the development of pan-European energy poverty indicators and definitions – a key theme in EVALUATE research to date (e.g. see here and here) – as well as the development of new knowledge exchange networks to improve scientific and policy knowledge on the issue.
Find out more about the observatory on its official website.