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University of Exeter

EEIST Project Newsletter Autumn 2022


Welcome to our autumn issue from the new EEIST team!


Dear EEIST Community,

A very warm, autumnal welcome from the new leadership team on EEIST.  Our team have been working hard over the summer, and you can find more details on what work has been taking place in our country and event updates.  Highlights include our first in-person Community of Practice workshop for the Brazil team in August, and the launch of our next report: 10 principles for policymaking in the energy transition: lessons from experience in America.  This report is available in various languages.  EEIST has also launched a new series of policy briefs.  See the news section for our first edition.

We look forward to our next update in December.


The EEIST Project Management Team


News and Communities of Practice Updates

University of Exeter

EEIST's new report is published


The EEIST team has completed its second deliverable: General principles for policy-making in the energy transition.  This report is a combination of all the work of EEIST partners and outlines ten principles for successful policy-making on low carbon transitions.  This was launched on September 22nd at GCEAF in Pittsburgh by Dr Cristina Penasco and Simon Sharpe.  Based on detailed empirical evidence, these 10 principles overturn conventional wisdom and suggest a new way forward that can help countries accelerate innovation, job-creation, and cost reduction in the shift from fossil fuels to clean technologies.  For more details on this event, and to watch the presentation, please click here.


EEIST's new report is available in full in Chinese and Portuguese.  The executive summary is available in Spanish

EEIST Policy Brief Series


EEIST has launched a new series of policy briefs aimed at policymakers.  The first, entitled:  Is a Solar Future Inevitable? How to shape policies to capture the opportunities of cheap solar can be found here.


Look out for our next brief on Electric Vehicles coming in November, Evidence of a global Electric Vehicle tipping point. 

"Hope amid climate chaos: ‘We are in a race between Armageddon and awesome’"


See here for an article on positive tipping points published this week in The Guardian by Damian Carrington which features EEIST's Tim Lenton, Doyne Farmer and Simon Sharpe.  

Updates from our International Partners


The Brazilian CPr organised a workshop titled “Brazilian Energy transitions: How models inform policy”, which took place at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro on August 3rd. The meeting was a key moment of exchange between scholar experts from the EEIST team (including researchers from Cambridge Econometrics, University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, University of Brasilia, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, University of Campinas and Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies) and relevant Brazilian stakeholders, including political figures.
During the meeting, experts presented models for energy transition developed within the EEIST Project, and debated policies for solar power and energy storage in Brazil (featuring contributions from members of the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean and the Brazilian Energy Research Office), as well as financial aspects of energy transition (together with representatives of the Brazilian Development Bank and the Brazilian Development Association). A follow-up meeting is planned to take place in early 2023.



Following the well-attended and positive full community meeting in June, the team have been busy making progress on various deep-dive modelling and engagement activities with Chinese partners.

We are excited about our work on carbon pricing and the emissions trading scheme in China, led by the Energy Research Institute of Chinese Academy of Macroeconomic Research and Beijing Normal University. This work is close to finishing its first full iteration and we hope to present results in our forthcoming whole-consortium EEIST modelling report due early 2023. We are also connecting this work with the related modelling work of the IEA and the Chinese government.

Good progress is being made on China-specific analysis from our E3ME team (Cambridge Econometrics and University of Exeter) with guidance from Prof. Xiliang Zhang’s team at Tsinghua University. Our growing collaboration with the Guangzhou Institute of Energy Conversion (GIEC) continues, focussing on modelling the future of hydrogen in the region.

In the coming months and into 2023 we expect many of these studies to come to fruition, with others coming online. Our focus will then switch to disseminating findings further, identifying opportunities for capacity building and training around specific modelling approaches, and cementing our long-term commitment to working with Chinese partners on new economic modelling of the energy transition.


The author team for the new report presented its findings recently to the UK Community of Practice team.  This was an opportunity to discuss the 10 principles with the team. 

The next meeting will be on November 23rd and the topic will be: Evidence of a global Electric Vehicle tipping point.  If you would like to attend, please contact




University of Exeter

Dr Sarah Royston (Anglia Ruskin University) presented at ERSSC


Sarah Royston (Anglia Ruskin University) presented a paper at the Energy Research and Social Science Conference on the 23rd June. Titled “Masters of the Machinery: The politics of economic modelling within EU energy policy”, and co-authored with Chris Foulds, Aled Jones and Roberto Pasqualino, the presentation sparked discussion about the problematic dominance of models such as PRIMES, and the challenges of promoting alternative and innovative modelling approaches. The authors are now using this feedback in finalising a journal paper on the topic.

Major new tipping points initiative launched at conference


The event was a great success and was boosted by a £1 million (US$1.15m) grant from the Bezos Earth Fund.

IPCC-like assessment

The project will be run by Professor Lenton, Dr Andy Richards, Dr Jesse Abrams, Dr Chris Boulton, Dr Josh Buxton and Dr Tom Powell, all from the University of Exeter, collaborating with system change company Systemiq, the Systems Change Lab (a Bezos Earth Fund and World Resources Institute initiative), and Simon Sharpe, Director of Economics for UNFCCC Climate Champions.

The team will produce a comprehensive report on both positive tipping points and the risks posed by climate tipping points.

This will reflect the structure of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports, which are divided into three "working groups" covering different aspects of climate change.

Systemiq will lead on producing an updated analysis ahead of COP27, building on its findings from the Paris Effect reports (2020, 2021) which highlighted that positive tipping points could be achieved before 2030 in sectors representing 90% of emissions.

Click here to find out more about the conference.

Just Transition Platform Conference


Chris Foulds will be presenting the D3 Principles at the Just Transition Platform Conference which will be held in Brussels from 24 to 25 October 2022 hosted by DG REGIO of the European Commission. The Conference will be opened by Commissioners Ferreira and Simson who provide high-level political opening messages and engage in a panel discussion with various stakeholders. The discussions will focus on how EU policy framework and supporting mechanisms can help regions and citizens in times of energy crisis, and how we can involve key stakeholders in development of a vision for a green and futureproof economy to ensure that the accelerated transition out of fossil fuels can be achieved without leaving anyone behind.



As well as launching the new EEIST report in Pittsburgh, (see news section above), EEIST was also represented by Dr Femke Nijsse from the University of Exeter.  She presented at the high-level  launch of Transforming Solar – Supply Chains. She said: 

"Solar power is continuing its rapid price declines as part of a self-reinforcing loop between deployment and innovation.  As a result of this, solar is projected to be the cheapest form of newly-installed electricity generation in almost all world regions by 2030. This presents a large opportunity, as typical prices of solar PV are expected to be half that of coal in that year in key economic regions, giving rise to opportunities around universal access to electricity and industrial booms. These dynamics form a tipping point. To fully exploit this opportunity, it's important policies around storage, diversification of renewables, energy efficiency and finance for countries in the Global South are in place."  


Selected Papers and Publications From EEIST Researchers

University of Exeter

New Paper in Joule - Empirically grounded technology forecasts and the energy transition


Authors: Rupert Way, Matthew C. Ives, Penny Mealy and J.Doyne Farmer

Transitioning to a decarbonised energy system by around 2050 is expected to save the world at least $12 trillion compared to continuing our current levels of fossil fuel use, according to research published in the journal Joule today. It suggests that accelerating the transition to renewable energy is now the best bet not just for the planet, but for energy costs too.

Read more 

New book published - Systems Mapping

How to build and use causal models of systems.

Authors: Pete Barbrook-Johnson, Alexandra S. Penn

Provides a practical and in-depth discussion of causal systems mapping methods. Provides guidance on running systems mapping workshops and using different types of data and evidence. Orientates readers to the systems mapping landscape and explores how we can compare, choose, and combine methods.

This book is open access, which means that you have free and unlimited access.

Find out more

New article published in Science Direct - Coping with increasing tides: Evolving agglomeration dynamics and technological change under exacerbating hazards


Authors: Andrea Roventini, Francesco Lamperti, Tatiana Filatova, Alessandro Taberna


This paper shows how flood risk non-linearly affects economics and economic dynamics, which in turns influence adaptation and mitigation strategies.

Find the article here


Next issue

University of Exeter

Our newsletter is published quarterly: please send news and events to Sarah Board: by 12th December at the latest.  The next newsletter will be published at the end of December.