Powering Transitions: Energy Elites and Sustainable Futures
Researcher: Anna Rauter (PhD Social Anthropology, 2022) Supervisors: Dr Mette High, Dr Huon Wardle
Centre for Energy Ethics – Department of Social Anthropology – School of Philosophical, Anthropological and Film Studies
Former PhD Student Anna Rauter’s study analysed how people strategically situated within the Norwegian energy industry experience current energy dilemmas and imagine future energy production amidst mounting climate change concerns. Anna Rauter drew on 18 months of ethnographic fieldwork in Oslo amongst the leaders and experts of Norwegian energy companies, referred to as ‘energy elites’. The resultant thesis shows how: 1) energy elites problematise and relativise the interrelations and tensions between different types of energy production (renewable and hydrocarbon) in light of climate change, 2) some elites challenge whilst others reinforce the energy status quo, and 3) energy transitions are manifested and became an endpoint rather than a process.