Izmir Citizen Action Lab (CAL) is a citizen-centred activity that seeks to gain first-hand knowledge regarding how energy is perceived by participants in their daily lives. Accordingly, the CAL contributes to generating new knowledge on how to involve citizens in the energy transition. Izmir Citizen Action Lab is particularly important for citizens to internalize the energy transition and actively participate in this process by taking the necessary actions.
Main objectives and theme
The objectives of the Izmir Citizen Action Lab are determined as follows:
– to understand what energy citizenship means for individuals
– to identify pointers to viable pathways for energy citizenship
– to classify motivators and barriers toward energy citizenship
– to co-create resolutions to alleviate barriers toward energy citizenship
– to identify policy suggestions and lifestyle changes for enhancing energy citizenship
Three focal areas pertaining to energy transition and energy citizenship are identified as the themes for the Izmir Citizen Action Lab. These are sustainable mobility, smart energy implementations for individuals, and household energy behaviours and decisions.
For whom is it relevant – Potential participants
Izmir Citizen Action Lab will be organized in two main sessions and will shed light on different themes. In the first session (morning session), socio-demographic data will be collected about the participants. Then, questions will be asked about how the target groups describe their current engagement and attitudes towards the energy transition, how they understand their own roles and other citizens’ roles, and what motivates and hinders them to become energy citizens.
The key points to be discussed in the first session are as follows:
– How do participants define energy citizenship?
– What kind of activities are the participants engaged in to become energy citizens?
– What does motivate them to contribute to the energy transition and become energy citizens?
– What are the challenges they face in relation to energy transition and energy citizenship? (e.g. energy poverty, lack of adequate access to resources in the energy transition process, infrastructure deficiencies, energy injustice, underrepresentation, etc.)
– Gender inequality in energy transition;
– Are the participants actively involved in the energy transition? (e.g. obtaining information on energy and climate issues, participating in discussions on energy transition and climate-related issues, being active on social media regarding energy concerns, considering energy transition in the purchase of electrical household appliances and using smart technologies, investing in renewable energy, energy efficiency and energy saving practices, etc.);
– Participants’ mind-sets, attitudes and beliefs regarding climate change, energy transition and energy citizenship;
– Participants’ energy consumption behaviour and their potential to change their consumption habits to contribute to the energy transition;
– Participants’ perceptions and opinions on the central and local government’s energy transition policies;
– Participants’ ideas on energy justice (whether all segments of society equally benefit from the advantages of the energy transition).
In the second session (afternoon session), the participants will be divided into different groups in the light of three main themes, including (1) sustainable mobility (transportation), (2) smart energy implementations for individuals, and (3) household energy behaviours and decisions.
Izmir Citizen Action Lab is planned to be organized as a workshop. The participants are expected to convey opinions, perform individual work, participate in group work, participate in discussions, generate ideas, and document their perceptions during different stages of the workshop. The participants are also expected to share their experiences pertaining to the selected themes, motivating factors, barriers, inter and intra-social processes, internal (individual) factors and external (social and community-oriented) factors, etc.
Following the group discussions conducted in the first session of the workshop in line with general perspectives regarding energy citizenship, “6 Thinking Hats” will be utilized as the methodological framework of the discussion in the second session. Accordingly, participants will be directed by the relevant questions categorized under the 6 Thinking Hats. In this sense, the main issues to be discussed are as follows:
refers to the participants’ existing knowledge of energy citizenship and the themes. Accordingly, community and social dynamics, inter and intra-social processes, common benefits, and shared goals will be elaborated
focuses on individual pathways, self-identity, actions, and habit change
identifies motivating factors for the participants to become energy citizens
identifies risks and barriers that hinder participants to take an active role in the energy transition (e.g. energy poverty, underrepresented groups in the energy transition and participants’ negative views on the themes)
focuses on solutions to barriers where potentials for lifestyle adoption, civic participation, political participation, and social participation will be discussed
refers to the prospective process where the participants will discuss policy suggestions or lifestyle suggestions (e.g., energy efficiency, technology uptake, innovation, digitalisation, renewable generation, social innovation)
Co-organizers and other partners
Izmir University of Economics
Izmir Metropolitan Municipality and Sustainable Urban Development Network
Stakeholder groups involved
Citizens (individuals), representatives of non-governmental organizations, and policymakers
Izmir Citizen Action Lab will be organized with volunteer participants older than 18 years. The information to be obtained within the scope of the workshop will be kept anonymous in accordance with the Personal Data Protection Law.