Using behavioral insights to speed up the rate of energy-efficient renovations?

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Sprekers: Julia Blasch (VU Amsterdam), Jeffry Broek (De Energiebespaarders) en Marike Knoef (Leiden University)


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Vorm deelsessie





The energy-efficient renovation of residential homes and the rapid adoption of electricity-based heating systems are a huge challenge for the Netherlands. Energy-efficient renovations have to be carried out in an unprecedented speed if the targets of the Klimaatakkoord are to be reached. Continuing at the current renovation rate will not be sufficient. To increase the renovation rate, the existing barriers for energy-efficient renovations need to be overcome with the help of classical instruments, like financial incentives, and behavioral interventions, such as messages that appeal to people’s behavioral biases. We will start this workshop with a brief overview of the current state of behavioral research on the topic and share insights from our own research, e.g. on the role of energy literacy and the status-quo bias. Then we will initiate a debate to what extent and how behavioral measures can be effectively used to support the energy transition in the Netherlands.

Over de sprekers

Julia Blasch is an Assistant Professor in Environmental Economics at the Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM) at VU Amsterdam and a Research Affiliate at the Centre for Energy Policy and Economics (CEPE) of ETH Zurich. Her research focuses on energy-related household behavior, in particular on individual decisions to invest in energy-efficient household appliances and home renovations. Since June 2019, she leads the NEWCOMERS project, a European research project on the role of community energy initiatives for the energy transition in Europe. She believes that behavioral insights have the potential to speed up the rate of energy-efficient renovations, in combination with traditional measures like financing.

Jeffry Broek is the founder of De Energiebespaarders, a tech scale-up based in Amsterdam that provides installation as-a-service to residential households. Their turnkey solution helps homeowners to make their homes more energy efficient. De Energiebespaarders installs products like insulation, solar panels and heat pumps including financing. Their mission is: “Energy-positive living simple and accessible for everybody”. Jeffry and his team realised a quarterly growth of around 40%. Since their incorporation more than 50.000 households received insight and advice from the Energiebespaarders. In collaboration with universities and research institutes, the Energiebespaarders regularly carry out research on how to overcome the barriers for energy-efficient renovations.
Before devoting his work fulltime to De Energiebespaarders, Jeffry served as a management trainee at E.ON the German Utility company. Jeffry graduated (2012) at the Technical University of Delft. He studied Complex Systems Engineering and Management (CoSEM).

Prof. Dr. Marike Knoef is Professor of Economics at Leiden University and director of the Network for Studies on Pensions, Aging and Retirement (Netspar). Her research focuses on individual decision making, with special attention to barriers for making decisions with long term implications. Lessons learned from the pension domain can be used to overcome barriers for making homes more energy efficient. For example, how to deal with complexity, present bias and social norms? She studies choice architecture, including behavioral tools such as defaults and framing. Marike works together with psychologists, sociologists, and epidemiologists. She connects disciplines and promotes cooperation between science and practice.


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