Centre for climate, energy and the environment (CLEEN)

Department of Interdisciplinary Studies of Culture

Centre for climate, energy and the environment (CLEEN)

Centre for climate, energy and the environment was established to coordinate the growing and now quite large research activity focusing on these important social challenges.

Illustrative photo of the Living Lab-house on the University campus

Around 25 scholars are studying topics like energy and climate policy, energy efficiency and energy consumption, development of renewable energy, public perceptions of and engagement with climate change and sustainable energy, climate adaption, sustainable cities and transport, and strategies towards sustainability transitions.

We are part of newly established research center; Norwegian Centre for Energy Transition Strategies (NTRANS), which is one of the national social science research centres for environmentally friendly energy (FME). The Centre also participates in several project funded by Horizon 2020.

Centre for climate, energy and the environment is among the largest research communities within its focus areas in Europe. Its scholars come from science and technology studies, sociology, political science, anthropology, organisation studies, and gender studies. The Centre collaborates closely across NTNU through the interdisciplinary strategic research area Energy

From 2009 -2019, we were involved in the Centre for Sustainable Energy Studies (CenSES).

In addition, we have been involved in the ongoing initiative, NTNU Energy Transition (NET), which is a multidisciplinary hub of researchers and industry members that advise on the transition to future energy systems, and provide strategies that move sustainable solutions to the marketplace.

27 Dec 2023

Research projects

Research projects

The Centre for energy, climate and the environment participates in several Centres for Environment-friendly Energy Research (FME). The objective of the scheme for Centres for Environment-friendly Energy Research is to establish time-limited research centres which conduct concentrated, focused and long-term research of high international calibre in order to solve specific challenges in the field. 

Horizon 2020 is EU’s large research and innovation programme. Support from this programme is given very high priority from NTNU leadership as well as Ministry of Education and Research. Presently, we are partner in the following projects:

Previous Research

Previous Research

The European research network “Digitalization for Sustainability – Science in Dialogue” (D4S) is dedicated to develop a progressive vision for a digitalisation that fosters environmental and social sustainability. The project is funded by Robert Bosch foundation and was mainly active between 1 September 2020 to 31 December 2022, while there still will be ongoing events and talks on the outcomes and vision of the project.

Visit the project website for more information: Home - D4S - digitalization for sustainability (digitalization-for-sustainability.com)

The COJUST project aims to co-produce energy and climate policies with and for low-income groups in Norway. By looking more closely at equality and justice aspects of sustainable change, the project will be able to develop effective and fair measures that have support in the population.

Visit the project website for more information about the project: COJUST

Climate change leads to challenges at many levels and sectors of society. A particularly important sector is the building sector, and Norway's 2.4 million homes. Building and heating of houses accounts for approx. 40% of all land energy consumption in Norway, and there is great potential for energy efficiency of new and older buildings. With an increasingly wilder and wetter climate, homes are also heavily affected by wear and tear. This is also an arena where good craftsmanship is needed.

The Crafting Climate project focused on craftsmen who play an important role in the transition to a more climate-friendly construction practice. The project investigated the craftsman's practices, tools, roles and communities of practice. 

Project leaders/participants: Håkon Fyhn; Roger A. Søraa; Jøran Solli.

Funding: The Norwegian Research Council program KLIMAFORSK

Duration: 2014-2018.


Centre for Sustainable Energy Studies

CenSES aimed to conduct research that contributes to a better factual basis for public and private decision-makers at the interface between climate, energy and industrial policy. The project studied success factors for innovation in the current technological FMEs. The research was conducted by researchers within various disciplines, with different theoretical and methodological approaches, that gave a more holistic picture on success criteria for implementation of new technologies. Our research on innovation and value creation focussed on how to build new industry based on renewable technologies.

CenSES created a multidisciplinary scientific community, integrating the societal challenges and possibilities for energy systems and policymaking. The centre produced 328 scientific articles and educated more than 200 master students, 44 PhD students and 19 post docs. CenSES strengthened the knowledge base for the formulation of policies for energy transitions at national, regional and local levels. The centre developed analysed how markets, policy measures, and regulatory policies impact the energy system and greenhouse gas emissions. CenSES new scenario methodology has been used in a number of European projects, including the development of the next generation modelling support for the European energy transition. The main impact may be an increased ability to meet our obligations in climate emission reductions and the value creation from Norwegian energy resources, as well as both a higher innovation rate from technology research and faster implementation.

Funding: The Research Council of Norway

Duration: 2011-2019

External link for CenSES

Bringing Environmental Knowledge into Action in Norwegian Local Governments

More than half of the world’s population is now living in cities, and this share is expected to increase in the years to come. This may cause environmental challenges, particularly with respect to increasing greenhouse gas emissions and local pollution. In order to handle these challenges, developing and sharing relevant knowledge between cities is of great importance.  

The BREV project has explored knowledge development and learning within sustainable urban development in Norway. We have addressed the ways in which city actors (planners, politicians and administrative employees in national, regional and local governments involved in sustainable urban development) in Norway create, learn and share relevant knowledge to make Norwegian cities more sustainable. Central questions have been as follows: What visions and expectations guide the city actors’ work? How do they develop knowledge and how do they learn from each other? How do they decide upon urban public transport systems, and what are the consequences of these choices?

A main finding from the project is the importance of having centrally organized urban programs in order to create and sustain horizontal learning networks between cities. This may contribute to knowledge exchange and learning among actors aiming to improve the sustainability of cities.

Project leader: Vivian Anette Lagesen l

Project members: Lina Ingeborgrud; Lucia Liste

Funding: The Norwegian Research Council program Miljø2015/Miljøforsk

Duration: 2014-2017

Social Sciences and Humanities for Advancing Policy in European Energy

SHAPE ENERGY is the €2m European platform for energy-related social sciences and humanities (energy-SSH). Social sciences and humanities research has played less of a role to date in shaping European energy policy than Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines. SHAPE ENERGY aims to develop Europe’s expertise in using and applying energy-SSH. Our innovative Platform bring together those who ‘demand’ energy research – including businesses, policymakers, and NGOs, who can use it to develop practical initiatives – with those who ‘supply’ that research. 

External link for SHAPE-ENERGY

Zero Emission Buildings

The vision of The Research Centre on Zero Emission Buildings, ZEB, is to eliminate the greenhouse gas emissions caused by buildings. This national research centre will place Norway in the forefront with respect to research, innovation and implementation within the field of energy efficient zero-emission buildings.

The main objective of ZEB is to develop competitive products and solutions for existing and new buildings that will lead to market penetration of buildings that have zero emissions of greenhouse gases related to their production, operation and demolition. The Centre encompasses both residential and commercial buildings, as well as public buildings.

External link for ZEB

Markets, actors, technologies. A comparative study of smartgrid solutions 

Improving energy efficiency and replacing fossil fuels with renewable energy are among the most important measures on the road to a sustainable energy system. This implies new ways of generating and consuming energy as well as new forms of relations between the energy producers and consumers. The MATCH project contributes to the shift to a carbon-neutral energy system by zooming in on the changing roles of small consumers in the future electricity system (the “smart grids”).

External link for MATCH

Integrated electric vehicles and batteries to empower distributed and centralised storage in distribution grids

Renewable energies and electric vehicles (EVs) change the way we consume and produce electricity. It also changes the way those who manage and distribute it must think about the electricity system – to always provide the best possible service for the connected costumers. But these things are difficult, and often take a long time.The goal of the EU funded Horizon 2020 project INVADE is to greatly speed up this process, by showing that the technologies and solutions we have today, only must be connected in new ways to solve the challenges of tomorrow.

External link for INVADE

Energy choices supporting the energy Union and the SET plan

ECHOES is an EU-funded research project that will provide a deeper understanding of individual and collective energy-related choices and behaviour to ensure that the Energy Union comes to life in the most efficient and effective way. 

External link for ECHOES


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