Imperial College London

Dr Matthew Hannon

Faculty of Natural SciencesCentre for Environmental Policy

Visiting Researcher
 
 
 
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Contact

 

m.hannon

 
 
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Location

 

16 Prince's GardensSouth Kensington Campus

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Summary

 

Publications

Publication Type
Year
to

31 results found

Gonzalez FF, Webb J, Sharmina M, Hannon M, Braunholtz-Speight T, Pappas Det al., 2022, Local energy businesses in the United Kingdom: Clusters and localism determinants based on financial ratios, ENERGY, Vol: 239, ISSN: 0360-5442

Journal article

Braunholtz-Speight T, McLachlan C, Mander S, Hannon M, Hardy J, Cairns I, Sharmina M, Manderson Eet al., 2021, The long term future for community energy in Great Britain: a co-created vision of a thriving sector and steps towards realising it, Energy Research and Social Science, Vol: 78, Pages: 1-15, ISSN: 2214-6296

Explorations of the longer-term potential for community energy to contribute to the energy transition can shape policy and practice today. However, much community energy research in Great Britain is currently, and understandably, focussed on short-term responses to the crisis in the sector induced by recent shifts in policy support. Therefore, we held a series of visioning and backcasting workshops with community energy practitioners and other stakeholders, to co-create a vision of a long term future where there is a thriving community energy sector.This paper presents the results of those workshops. Using the concept of business models to interrogate how community energy could be structured in the future, we find that the sector could diversify from its current focus on renewable electricity generation and energy efficiency, into new areas of the energy system: demand-side flexibility, mobility and heat. We also see potential for a Community Energy Confederation to help bridge the gap between the strengths of local organising, and the opportunities offered by larger scale activities. We identify the importance of actions by government – both at national and local levels – to realising this vision, in combination with the efforts of the community energy sector itself. Our research highlights the need for change in the institutional and spatial character of community energy; the sector’s pragmatic attitude to the technological aspects of the energy transition; and its focus on community energy’s role in delivering social and environmental co-benefits, in line with the concept of a just transition.

Journal article

Gonzalez FF, Webb J, Sharmina M, Hannon M, Pappas D, Tingey Met al., 2021, Characterising a local energy business sector in the United Kingdom: Participants, revenue sources, and estimates of localism and smartness, ENERGY, Vol: 223, ISSN: 0360-5442

Journal article

Braunholtz-Speight T, Sharmina M, Manderson E, McLachlan C, Hannon M, Hardy J, Mander Set al., 2020, Price support allows communities to raise low-cost citizen finance for renewable energy projects, NATURE ENERGY, Vol: 5, Pages: 127-128, ISSN: 2058-7546

Journal article

Braunholtz-Speight T, Sharmina M, Manderson E, Hannon M, Hardy J, Mander Set al., 2020, Business models and financial characteristics of community energy in the UK, Nature Energy, Vol: 5, Pages: 169-177, ISSN: 2058-7546

Community energy projects take a decentralised and participatory approach to low-carbon energy. We present a quantitative analysis of business models, financing mechanisms and financial performance of UK community energy projects, based on a new survey. We find that business models depend on technology, project size, and fine-tuning of operations to local contexts. While larger projects rely more on loans, community shares are the most common and cheapest financial instrument in the sector. Community energy has pioneered low-cost citizen finance for renewables, but its future is threatened by reductions, and instability, in policy support. Over 90% of the projects in our sample make a financial surplus during our single-year snapshot, but this falls to just 20% if we remove income from price guarantee mechanisms, such as the Feed-in Tariff. Renewed support and/or business model innovations are therefore needed for the sector to realise its potential contribution to the low-carbon energy transition.

Journal article

Skea J, Gazis E, Rhodes A, van Diemen R, Hannon Met al., 2019, Energy Innovation for the Twenty-First Century, Publisher: Edward Elgar Publishing

Book

Frame D, Hannon M, Bell K, McArthur Set al., 2018, Innovation in regulated electricity distribution networks: A review of the effectiveness of Great Britain's Low Carbon Networks Fund, ENERGY POLICY, Vol: 118, Pages: 121-132, ISSN: 0301-4215

Journal article

Restuccia D, Clodoveo ML, Corbo F, Loizzo MRet al., 2018, De-stoning technology for improving olive oil nutritional and sensory features: The right idea at the wrong time., Food Res Int, Vol: 106, Pages: 636-646

De-stoning technology has been introduced in the olive oil sector more than twenty years ago. It has not gained momentum because, sometimes, innovative ideas are not accepted since they are suggested at the wrong time or under the wrong circumstances. Virgin olive oil (VOO) is one of the most popular functional foods, mainly due to its antioxidant properties. These features, as well as other nutritional characteristics are generally enhanced by the de-stoning process. However, despite the improvement of the nutritional value, in the past the de-stoned oil didn't achieve marketing success mainly in relation to technological limitations (i.e. low oil yield). Only in recent years healthy properties became an element able to influence consumers' behavior, overcoming the limit of low oil yields and attracting the attention of olive oil producers. An analysis of the advantages, in terms of product quality and process sustainability, is given in this review. Here, for the first time, the fragmented results reported in literature are critically analyzed underlining the contradictions reported by different authors showing the main reasons for the unlucky fate of this technology in the industrial sector. In the final section the challenges, that future research must focus on, are presented, including emerging technologies in VOO processing. Literature data, for the first time discussed here exhaustively, show that de-stoning technology is a mechanical strategy useful to increase the nutritional and the sensory quality of the product. Moreover, it reduces the depletion of natural resources obtaining a selective crushing of the drupe by removing the stones from the olive paste so increasing the sustainability and efficiency of VOO extraction plants.

Journal article

Hu R, Skea J, Hannon MJ, 2017, Measuring the energy innovation process: An indicator framework and a case study of wind energy in China, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Vol: 127, Pages: 227-244, ISSN: 0040-1625

Whilst a well-established literature on metrics to assess innovation performance exists, relatively little work has linked it to the energy technology innovation process. This paper systematically brings together indicator sets and derives an indicator framework for measuring energy innovation, offering an important step forward in the quantitative evaluation of energy innovation performance. It incorporates input, output and outcome metrics that relate to different stages along the energy technology innovation chain, namely research, development, demonstration, market formation and diffusion. To test its efficacy, the indicator framework is applied to the case of wind energy in China, drawing comparisons against global market leaders such as Denmark, Germany and the USA. The paper finds that the framework enables a more rigorous comparative analysis of energy innovation between countries than currently offered by either the application of piecemeal indicators and complements contextually rich qualitative case studies. The empirical analysis shows that China has begun to lead across a range of innovation inputs (e.g. R & D expenditure) and outputs (e.g. publications) but lags considerably behind international competitors against other output and outcome indicators such as patents, revenue and exports.

Journal article

Bolton R, Hannon M, 2016, Governing sustainability transitions through business model innovation: Towards a systems understanding, RESEARCH POLICY, Vol: 45, Pages: 1731-1742, ISSN: 0048-7333

Journal article

Hu R, Skea J, Hannon M, 2016, A multi-dimensional indicator framework for evaluating energy technology innovation system, DRUID Academy

Conference paper

MacLean K, Gross R, Hannon M, Rhodes AR, Parrish Bet al., 2015, Energy system crossroads - time for decisions:UK 2030 low carbon scenarios and pathways - key decision points for a decarbonised energy system, ICEPT/WP/2015/019

Report

Hannon M, 2015, Raising the temperature of the UK heat pump market: Learning lessons from Finland, Energy Policy, Vol: 85, Pages: 369-375, ISSN: 0301-4215

The Committee on Climate Change’s (CCC) updated abatement scenario for the UK’s fourth carbon budget reserves a central role for heat pumps to decarbonise its buildings sector by 2030. However, the UK has one of the least developed heat pump markets in Europe and renewable heat output from heat pumps will need to increase by a factor of 50 over the next 15 years to be in line with the scenario. Therefore, this paper explores what lessons the UK might learn from Finland to achieve this aim considering that its current level of heat pump penetration is comparable with that outlined in the CCC scenario for 2030. Despite the two countries’ characteristic differences we argue they share sufficient similarities for the UK to usefully draw some policy-based lessons from Finland including: stimulating new-build construction and renovation of existing stock; incorporating renewable heat solutions in building energy performance standards; and bringing the cost of heat pumps in-line with gas fired heating via a combination of subsidies, taxes and energy RD&D. Finally, preliminary efforts to grow the heat pump market could usefully focus on properties unconnected to the gas-grid, considering these are typically heated by relatively expensive oil or electric heating technologies.

Journal article

Hannon M, Foxon TJ, Gale WF, 2015, ‘Demand pull’ government policies to support Product-Service System activity: the case of Energy Service Companies (ESCos) in the UK, Journal of Cleaner Production, Vol: 108, Pages: 900-915, ISSN: 0959-6526

Product-Service Systems (PSSs) constitute a family of service-based business models designed to satisfy our societal needs in an economically and environmentally sustainable manner. To date however PSS application has remained niche due to a variety of critical barriers. This paper explores how ‘demand pull’ national government policies could support PSS activity by addressing these barriers and cultivating market demand. Lessons are drawn from a case study of how regulatory, economic incentive, informative and procurement policies have supported Energy Service Company (ESCo) activity in the UK; a sub-set of the PSS family focused on energy service provision. Subsequently five policy recommendations are presented to support PSS activity: (1) balancing economic incentives and regulatory disincentives; (2) promoting indirect policy support; (3) redesigning existing market structures; (4) promoting locally-led PSS activity; and (5) creating stable policy frameworks. The paper warns however that national government policy cannot easily address all PSS barriers, such as customer preferences, international developments, technological progress and inherent business model weaknesses, pointing to the need for other complementary solutions. Furthermore, other governance actors beside national government could also implement PSS supporting policies.

Journal article

Hannon M, Bolton RJ, 2014, UK Local Authority engagement with the Energy Service Company (ESCo) model: key characteristics, benefits, limitations and considerations, Energy Policy, Vol: 78, Pages: 198-212, ISSN: 0301-4215

This paper explores how some UK Local Authorities (LAs) have opted to engage with the Energy Service Company (ESCo) model in a bid to enhance their influence over local energy system change and help them to deliver on their political ‘public good’ objectives. Three common approaches to LA ESCo model engagement are outlined including the: (1) LA owned ‘arm's-length’ model; (2) private sector owned concession agreement model; and (3) community owned and run model. The LA's decision to establish its own ESCo, or alternatively enter into a partnership with another, predominantly depends on: its willingness to expose itself to risk, the level of strategic control it desires and the resources it has at its disposal. However, the business case is contingent on the extent to which the national policy and regulatory framework facilitates and obligates LAs to play an active energy governance role. Stronger alignment of local and national energy agendas through communication and coordination between different governance actors could help to remove critical barriers to LA ESCo engagement and their wider energy governance activities.

Journal article

Hannon M, Skea J, Rhodes A, 2014, Innovation in the energy sector: advancing or frustrating climate policy goals?, 10th British Institute of Energy Economics Academic Conference

The energy sector is well known for the relatively modest level of resource that it devotes to research and development (R&D). However, the incremental pace of energy innovation has speeded up in the last decade as measured by public sector R&D budgets, deployment of alternative technologies and novel institutional arrangements. While much of this effort has been targeted at technologies that promise to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, there have also been major innovations that extend the fossil fuel resource base and reduce the cost of extraction. The last decade’s developments can be seen in terms of a challenge to the existing energy paradigm in parallel with a renewed innovative response focusing on conventional fuels and technologies. This paper examines this tension, by exploring the expectations of a variety of organisations in both the public and private sector regarding energy sector developments and by analysing private sector expenditure on energy research and development (R&D) and public sector budgets for energy R&D and demonstration (RD&D). Scenarios and outlook exercises that have been published since 2013 reveal a wide range of beliefs about the future development of the energy system. The contrasting views underpinning the different scenarios are reflected in divergent patterns of R&D investment between the private and public sectors. There appears to be a tension between the drive to transform energy systems, on the part of public bodies, mainly motivated by the need to combat global climate change, and private sector activity, which tends to reinforce and extend existing patterns of energy provision. The paper addresses, but not answer definitively, the key question as to whether technological change is enabling or frustrating ambitious carbon goals.

Conference paper

Rhodes A, Skea J, Hannon M, 2014, The global surge in energy innovation, Energies, Vol: 7, Pages: 5601-5623, ISSN: 1996-1073

Policymakers are seeking a transformation of the energy system driven by concerns about climate change, energy security and affordability. At the same time, emerging developments in underpinning science and engineering are opening up new possibilities across the whole technology spectrum covering renewables and other supply side technologies, energy demand and energy infrastructure. This paper reviews both the “policy pull” for energy innovation activities and the “science and technology push”. It explores the expectations of a variety of organisations in both the public and private sector regarding these pressures and possibilities by assessing various scenarios and outlook exercises that have been published since 2013. It reveals a wide range of beliefs about the future development of the energy system. The paper then moves on to analyse private sector expenditure on energy research and development (R&D) and public sector budgets for energy R&D and demonstration (RD&D). This analysis demonstrates significant divergences in patterns of innovation between the private and public sectors and leads to the hypothesis that the private sector is, broadly, taking measures to reinforce the existing energy paradigm while the public sector is focusing on new energy technologies that support wider policy objectives. This pattern is consistent with past technological transitions, with innovation efforts that would transform the energy system being counteracted by countervailing efforts that reinforce the existing fossil fuel-based paradigm.

Journal article

Hannon M, Skea J, Rhodes A, 2014, Facilitating and coordinating UK energy innovation through systemic innovation intermediaries, 5th International Conference on Sustainability Transitions

Conference paper

Hannon M, Skea J, 2014, UK innovation support for energy demand reduction, Proceedings of the ICE - Energy

Journal article

Skea J, Hannon M, 2014, Investing in energy innovation - towards a more effective RD&D landscape, Publisher: Energy World

Report

Skea J, Hannon MJ, Rhodes A, 2013, Investing in a brighter energy future: Energy research and training prospectus

Report

Hannon MJ, 2013, Business Model Innovation and Sustainability Transitions

Working paper

Hannon MJ, 2013, UKERC Energy Research Atlas: Socio-Economic Issues

Report

Hannon MJ, Bolton RPG, 2013, More than just business? Local Authority engagement with the Energy Service Company (ESCo) business model and implications for UK energy system change, Urban energy governances, North and South; International roundtable seminar

Conference paper

Hannon M, 2012, Co-evolution of innovative business models and sustainability transitions: The case of the Energy Service Company (ESCo) model and the UK energy system

Thesis dissertation

Hannon MJ, 2012, PhD thesis - Co-evolution of innovative business models and sustainability transitions: The case of the Energy Service Company (ESCo) model and the UK energy system

Report

Bale CSE, Foxon TJ, Hannon MJ, Gale WFet al., 2012, Making the case for strategic energy planning within local authorities: a study from the city of Leeds, Energy Policy, Vol: 48, Pages: 242-251

Journal article

Hannon MJ, 2012, Co-evolution of innovative business models and sustainability transitions: The case of the Energy Service Company (ESCo) model and the UK energy system

Thesis dissertation

Hannon MJ, Bolton RPG, 2012, Governing Distribution Networks at the Urban Scale: Interactions between public and private actors, International Urban Retrofit Workshop: Theories and Concepts, Dynamics and Practices, Politics and Implications

Conference paper

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