Behavioural change toward energy efficiency through ICT

Publication date
September 19, 2016
January 19, 2017
Short description

The objective is to demonstrate that ICT-based solutions can contribute to saving energy by motivating and supporting behavioural change of energy end-users. The main challenges are (i) establishing cost-effectiveness, i.e. demonstrating that solutions allow a good return on investment through energy savings (ii) making energy usage data accessible to the consumer and to designated third parties (for application development or designing new business models around them) and (iii) demonstrating that energy savings can be achieved without compromising comfort levels.

Activities are focused on the development of innovative user-friendly digital tools and applications or services making use of energy end-user generated information or captured from in-home equipment/sensors (like smart meters, communication-enabled heat metering tools, smart plugs, smart appliances and/or energy-aware products), in possible combination with intelligent controls and automation, with the purpose to significantly enhance energy efficiency by behavioural change of end-users taking informed decisions. The solutions will focus on empowering consumers (buildings managers, buildings owners as well final users including residents, housing associations, visitors, public actors, etc.) to engage and collaborate in achieving energy savings and allowing them to explore different means and measures to manage their energy needs over the longer term.

Proposers should integrate and validate different technological elements, each element with at least TRL 6 (please see part G of the General Annexes), combined with appropriate business models and social acceptance parameters.

Insights from social and behavioural sciences should be used to understand: (i) factors influencing consumer choices and (ii) the impact of consumer behaviour on the energy system. Where relevant, gender, socio-economic, demographic and cultural differences should be identified and taken into account as a means of segmentation and tailoring actions to target groups.

The proposals should respond to the following:

  • The need for efficient and compact consortia, involving, as appropriate, ICT developers and providers, manufacturers of home appliances, energy experts, social sciences and humanities experts, citizens representatives, as well as utilities (DSOs or retailers), energy service companies (ESCOs) and building managers.
  • The impact of indoor climatic conditions on personal health, productivity and comfort.
  • The developed solutions should be deployed in a variety of building types located in at least two different climatic regions. Access to the buildings should be guaranteed, together with all relevant building information, including smart metering infrastructure.
  • The proposed solutions shall be deployed and validated in real environments, clearly defined and monitored, for a period of at least 1 year, ensuring credibility and consistency of conclusions. Validation should cover business models and RoI, and should include detailed plans for sustainability and large-scale uptake beyond the project lifetime.

ICT solutions should primarily address energy efficiency, but may integrate other solutions including also indoor climate, building/home security or health monitoring. This "packaging" approach would need to demonstrate the added benefits for consumers, as well as the market potential.

Proposals should take into consideration the projects supported under the topic EE 11 of the Work Programme 2014-2015 of the Horizon 2020 Energy Challenge.

The topic EUB-02-2017 ("Utilities: energy management at home and in buildings") in Part 5.i. Information and Communication Technologies of the Work Programme/ LEIT is also relevant and addresses similar challenges.

The proposers should explain in detail how they will address possible ethical issues like research with human participants and personal data protection.

The proposers should also explain what will happen after the end of the action of any project-related equipment deployed in buildings for the purpose of the project. Costs for the purchase of mobile devices like mobile phones, tablets as well as cost for services of internet connections are not eligible under this topic.

Proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 1 and 2 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact:

Proposed actions are expected to demonstrate the impacts listed below (wherever possible, use quantified indicators and targets):

  • Significant reduction of final energy consumption prompted by innovative ICT solutions clearly quantified and substantiated, and subsequent reduction of CO2 emissions.
  • Accelerated wider deployment and adoption of user-friendly ICT solutions prompting behavioural change and energy efficiency, including plans for its sustainability after the project's life and potential/readiness for replication.
  • Number of energy end-users changing their behaviour documenting why and how changes are an effect of particular measures taken, as well in terms of the sustainability of the behavioural change.

The proposals should quantify foreseen impacts, using preliminary but credible baselines and benchmarks to substantiate calculations and clearly demonstrate how the energy savings will be measured and reached.

Proposals are encouraged to take advantage of using the already developed common methodologies for calculating energy savings in public buildings and social housing.

Cross-cutting Priorities:

  • Gender
  • Open Innovation

Please read carefully all provisions below before the preparation of your application.

  1. List of countries and applicable rules for funding: described in part A of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme.
    Note also that a number of non-EU/non-Associated Countries that are not automatically eligible for funding have made specific provisions for making funding available for their participants in Horizon 2020 projects (follow the links to Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Hong Kong & Macau, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Taiwan).

  2. Eligibility and admissibility conditions: described in part B and C of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme.

    Proposal page limits and layout: Please refer to Part B of the standard proposal template.
  3. Evaluation

    3.1  Evaluation criteria and procedure, scoring and threshold: described in part H of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme

    3.2 Submission and evaluation process: Guide to the submission and evaluation process
  4. Indicative timetable for evaluation and grant agreement:

    Information on the outcome of single-stage evaluation: maximum 5 months from the deadline for submission.
    Signature of grant agreements: maximum 8 months from the deadline for submission.
  5. Provisions, proposal templates and evaluation forms for the type(s) of action(s) under this topic:

    Innovation Action:
    Specific provisions and funding rates
    Standard proposal template (the call specific templates must be downloaded from the electronic submission system) 
    Standard evaluation form
    H2020 General MGA -Multi-Beneficiary
    Annotated Grant Agreement
  6. Additional provisions:

    Horizon 2020 budget flexibility

    Classified information

    Technology readiness levels (TRL) – where a topic description refers to TRL, these definitions apply.

    Financial support to Third Parties – where a topic description foresees financial support to Third Parties, these provisions apply.
  7. Open access must be granted to all scientific publications resulting from Horizon 2020 actions.

    Where relevant, proposals should also provide information on how the participants will manage the research data generated and/or collected during the project, such as details on what types of data the project will generate, whether and how this data will be exploited or made accessible for verification and re-use, and how it will be curated and preserved.

    Open access to research data
    The Open Research Data Pilot has been extended to cover all Horizon 2020 topics for which the submission is opened on 26 July 2016 or later. Projects funded under this topic will therefore by default provide open access to the research data they generate, except if they decide to opt-out under the conditions described in annex L of the Work Programme. Projects can opt-out at any stage, that is both before and after the grant signature.

    Note that the evaluation phase proposals will not be evaluated more favourably because they plan to open or share their data, and will not be penalised for opting out.

    Open research data sharing applies to the data needed to validate the results presented in scientific publications. Additionally, projects can choose to make other data available open access and need to describe their approach in a Data Management Plan.

    - Projects need to create a Data Management Plan (DMP), except if they opt-out of making their research data open access. A first version of the DMP must be provided as an early deliverable within six months of the project and should be updated during the project as appropriate. The Commission already provides guidance documents, including a template for DMPs.

    - Eligibility of costs: costs related to data management and data sharing are eligible for reimbursement during the project duration.

    The legal requirements for projects participating in this pilot are in the article 29.3 of the Model Grant Agreement.

  8. Additional documents:

    H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: Introduction
    H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: Secure, clean and efficient energy
    H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: Dissemination, Exploitation and Evaluation
    H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: General Annexes
    Legal basis: Horizon 2020 - Regulation of Establishment
    Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Rules for Participation
    Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Specific Programme 

Source: Participant Portal

  • H2020
Geographical focus
  • H2020
Scientifc field / Thematic focus
  • Cross-thematic/Interdisciplinary
  • Engineering and Technology

Entry created by Anna Sirocco on September 19, 2016
Modified on September 19, 2016