Call for engagement on insights for future regulation

Jeff Hardy

Head of Sustainable Energy Futures
29th March 2016
Areas covered:
Horizon scanning

We’ve recently published an open letter announcing that we are embarking on a process of horizon scanning. We need your help to ensure that this is a success.

What is horizon scanning? 

Horizon scanning uses a range of tools to assist strategic decision-making. It doesn’t predict the future, but its findings can be used to inform policy and enable organisations to make more resilient choices and reduce risk exposure. It’s about exploring new issues and trends or problems in different ways.

Why are we doing horizon scanning?

The ways energy is generated, transported and supplied to consumers are changing. The energy system is transforming from a largely centralised and carbon-intense model to one that is carbon-constrained, more decentralised, smart and flexible. 

At the same time, we’re seeing new and potentially disruptive business models entering the market. Peer-to-peer developments in the accommodation and transport sectors, and the societal changes wrought by information technologies are turning established business models inside-out in ways that few were prepared for.

Some of the effects of the energy system transformation are already being felt. A number of our current projects are looking at different elements of this in the context of future regulatory issues. 

These projects are important as they are looking at those areas of regulatory arrangements that we know need to evolve. What horizon scanning will add to our existing future-facing work is insight about challenges that are just emerging, or issues that don’t yet appear to be material, or even those not yet known. This will allow us to plan our future priorities accordingly.

How will we do this?

Our objective is to understand which drivers of energy system change have the greatest potential impact on consumers and regulation. What we learn will help us set our future priorities.

We know that there is already a wealth of material out there looking at future energy considerations. We also know that these transformational issues aren’t unique to Great Britain or to the energy sector. We are not proposing to reinvent the wheel. Our process will draw on knowledge that already exists.

Your input is important to help us identify the most impactful drivers of energy system change and how these might inform our future priorities. We will be hosting workshops in summer and autumn. Along the way we will also publish updates on our progress and ask questions through a series of blogs. We hope you’ll engage with these.

We’ll publish the findings of our work in December 2016 and set-out how it will inform the development of our future priorities.

How to get involved

If you would like to be involved, please register your interest by sending us an email: We’ll then get in touch with more information about the workshops and other channels of communication.