Energy and Behaviour

It is becoming clear that the the way people live their lives, including the way they inhabit buildings, makes a substantial difference to their energy use. Households of similar sizes and compositions living in homes of similar design and with similar infrastructures can have very different ways of living for all sorts of habitual, cultural and aesthetic reasons. This has implications for potential energy efficiency interventions and for the modelling of future energy demand. The same is true of non-domestic energy use where sensitivity to price (for example) is known to vary over time as contextual factors interplay. SERG’s research in this area concentrates on understanding and modelling behavioural aspects of energy use including potential rebound effects.


This page highlights a key output of the modelling conducted by the University of Southampton for the Solent Achieving Value from Efficiency (SAVE) project. Background: The SAVE Customer Model provides a household typology of 22 ‘customer types’ defined by household size, dwelling size and primary heating fuel.  Each of these characteristics was shown to be […]


24th July, 2019

It’s been a busy month or so for the Solent Achieving Value from Efficiency (SAVE) project. On 6th June 2019, Dr Tom Rushby and Prof Patrick James from the University of Southampton team joined project partners at a special event to mark the close of the project. The event was held at Central Hall, Westminster. […]


24th July, 2019

On July 10th, Dr Tom Rushby and Dr Ben Anderson were joined by other project partners to present the Solent Achieving Value from Efficiency (SAVE) project at a special parallel session of the 2019 International Conference for Energy and Cities. A number of key aspects of the SAVE project were described with presentations given on […]


4th April, 2019

Dr Ben Anderson has presented insights from his SPATIALEC EU MSCA Global Fellowship as part of an invited presentation at a BRANZ-hosted workshop on designing a future NZ domestic Energy End-Use study held in Wellington on April 4th 2019. Ben discussed the contribution of hot water and heat pump use to peak demand in NZ […]


14th February, 2019

Dr Ben Anderson presented an update on his local area electricity demand modelling work carried out under the SPATIALEC MSCA Global Fellowship at the Regional Science Association Australasia Conference in Christchurch, NZ in February. He discussed results from a preliminary model using NZ Census 2013 and GREEN Grid project data to model small area lighting […]


25th November, 2018

Dr Ben Anderson presented two aspects of ongoing SERG work on electricity demand at two recent conferences in New Zealand as part of his SPATIALEC EU MSCA Global Fellowship. The first, Electrifying Heat: Patterns of electricity consumption in electrically heated households in the UK and New Zealand was presented at ICEERB 2018, the 8th International […]


21st November, 2018

Dr Ben Anderson presented a summary of recent ‘Energy Cultures‘ work at the a Technical Symposium: IEA Energy In Buildings And Communities, in Wellington, New Zealand on 21st November. His talk, which formed part of his SPATIALEC EU MSCA Global Fellowship work explained how the energy cultures framework could be used to understand ‘irrational’ heating […]


10th September, 2018

“How much electricity do heat pumps really use? When is hot water heated and are the lights kept on all day in winter?” These and other questions can now be answered thanks to the release of anonymised electricity power demand data from a sample of 45 New Zealand households.


… for England. We didn’t plan the SAVE household sample recruitment and data collection period to over-lap with the 2018 World Cup but we had no end of fun when it did. We started out with some quick analysis of pick-ups (or not) of power demand during the game against Tunisia on June 18th before […]


Monitoring includes (a) Heat Network performance (b) indoor conditions and (c) outdoor conditions. (a) Using ultrasonic flow meters we are able to measure flows and temperatures in the heat network to monitor delivered heat and efficiency of the system without disrupting water circulation. (b) Indoor variables monitored include temperature and relative humidity in bedrooms and […]