School of Social and Political Science

Dr Jess Britton

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Research interests


Jess is a Research Fellow within the Local and Regional Energy Systems theme of the UK Energy Research Centre, working on the local governance and policy needs for smart, flexible energy systems. Jess' research focusses on understanding the role of decentralised actors in achieving net-zero energy systems, and how this relates to loca, regional and national governance structures. This incorporates research on interactions between decentralised energy systems and political devolution, the role of local governments, as well as smart cities and how energy business models are changing. Her PhD examined the development of heat networks in the UK and Germany with an emphasis on the role of municipal utilities. Previously she was an ESRC post-doctoral fellow at the University of Exeter and worked on the EPRSC project IGov (Innovation and Governance for future energy systems). She also researches gender and diversity within the energy industry and the research community.

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Publications by user content

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Britton J, Woodman B, Webb J. Ideational bricolage as a route to transforming local institutions for heat decarbonisation: Heat networks and local government in England. Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning. 2022 Jul 4;24(4):449-462.
Britton J, Minas AM, Marques AC, Pourmirza Z. Exploring the potential of heat as a service in decarbonization: Evidence needs and research gaps. Energy Sources Part B: Economics, Planning and Policy. 2021 Jan 20.
Britton J. Smart meter data and equitable energy transitions – can cities play a role? In Evans J, Karvonen A, Martin C, Luque-Ayala A, McCormick K, Raven R, Voytenko Palgan Y, editors, Smart and Sustainable Cities?: Pipedreams, Practicalities and Possibilities. 1 ed. Routledge. 2020
Kuzemko C, Britton J. Policy, politics and materiality across scales: A framework for understanding local government sustainable energy capacity applied in England. Energy Research and Social Science. 2020 Apr;62:1-10. 101367.
Judson E, Fitch-Roy O, Pownall T, Bray R, Poulter H, Soutar I et al. The centre cannot (always) hold: Examining pathways towards energy system de-centralisation. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews. 2020 Feb;118:1-10. 109499.
Britton J. Smart meter data and equitable energy transitions–can cities play a role? Local Environment. 2019;24(7):595-609.
Britton J. Localising energy: Heat networks and municipal governance. In Goldthau A, Keating MF, Kuzemko C, editors, Handbook of the International Political Economy of Energy and Natural Resources. Edward Elgar. 2018. p. 369–382. (Handbooks of Research on International Political Economy series).
Connor PM, Xie L, Lowes R, Britton J, Richardson T. The development of renewable heating policy in the United Kingdom. Renewable Energy. 2015 Mar;75:733-744.
Britton J, Woodman B. Local Enterprise Partnerships and the low-carbon economy: Front runners, uncertainty and divergence. Local Economy. 2014 Sep 1;29(6-7):617-634.
Souter I, Whiting J. Energy security policy in Britain: Markets, complexity and challenges. In Mitchell C, Watson J, Whiting J, editors, New Challenges in Energy Security: The UK in a Multipolar World. Palgrave Macmillan. 2013. p. 68-91. (Energy, Climate and the Environment).
Mitchell C, (ed.), Watson J, (ed.), Whiting J, (ed.). New Challenges in Energy Security: The UK in a Multipolar World. Palgrave Macmillan, 2013. 306 p. (Energy, Climate and the Environment).