This open book examines the role of pilot and demonstration projects as crucial devices for conducting innovation in the context of the energy transition. Bridging literature from sustainability transitions and Science and Technology Studies (STS), it argues that such projects play a crucial role, not only in shaping future energy and mobility systems, but in transforming societies more broadly. Pilot projects constitute socio-technical configurations where imagined future realities are materialized. With this as a backdrop, the book explores pilot projects as political entities, focusing on questions of how they gain their legitimacy, which resources are mobilized in their production, and how they can serve as sites of public participation and the production of energy citizenship. The book argues that such projects too often have a narrow technology focus, and that this is a missed opportunity. The book concludes by critically discussing the potential roles of research and innovation policy in transforming how such projects are configured and conducted.
Marianne Ryghaug is a professor of Science and Technology Studies at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology where she leads the research group on Energy, Climate and Environment. Over the last twenty years, her work has focused on the linkages between energy and climate policy, technological development and innovation, and public participation.
Tomas Moe Skjølsvold is a professor of Science and Technology Studies at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. He is the deputy director of the Norwegian Centre for Energy Transition Strategies (NTRANS) and has published extensively on socio-technical aspects of energy transitions, as well as scientific processes within climate and sustainability science over the last years.
This open book is licensed under a Creative Commons License (CC BY). You can download Pilot Society and the Energy Transition ebook for free in PDF format (1.7 MB).