Charlie Wilson



Role at Tyndall
Charlie is a part of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, and a co-ordinator of its Energy & Emissions research theme. As a Reader in the School of Environmental Sciences at UEA, Charlie organises and teaches a module on energy and climate change, and contributes to other modules on social science research methods, climate change science and policy, and fossil fuels.  

Role at Council
Theme Co-ordinator, Energy and Emissions.

Research Interests
Charlie's research interests lie at the intersection between technologies, behaviour and policy in the field of energy and climate change mitigation, working at both a systems level and a micro level.
At a systems level, Charlie is interested in long run historical as well as future energy transitions, and the extent to which historical patterns of technology diffusion can be used to validate scenario projections of low carbon technology diffusion. Charlie collaborates extensively with colleagues at IIASA (the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis) in Austria. Charlie's current projects include the EU-funded ADVANCE project to develop the next generation of integrated assessment models of the energy-economy, and the EU-funded AMPERE project to explore multi-model scenarios of low carbon futures. Charlie has recently completed a book on energy technology innovation systems and was a Lead Author of two chapters of the Global Energy Assessment which was published in 2012.
At a micro level, Charlie is interested in pro-environmental behaviour, the effectiveness of behaviour change interventions, and decision making heuristics and biases. Charlie primarily works on domestic energy efficiency including home renovations, but is also interested in pro-environmental behaviour and identity more generally. Charlie's previous projects include the UKERC-funded VERD project on energy efficient home renovation decisions in the context of the Green Deal, and the EPSRC-funded REFIT project on user relationships with and domestication of smart home technologies. Charlie also has a self-funded project on approaches for characterising and mapping pro-environmental behaviour along multiple dimensions.
Charlie's research is either directly policy-relevant, or has implications for policy. 

Charlie joined the Tyndall Centre and UEA in September 2010 from the London School of Economics. There, he taught courses on technological change and business sustainability. Charlie has a PhD from the University of British Columbia in Canada. This was an inter-disciplinary social scientific investigation of the social and behavioural determinants of energy use. Prior to his PhD, Charlie worked for a number of years in the private sector in both renewable energy finance and climate change policy.

Selected Publications

Grübler, A., F. Aguayo, K. Gallagher, M. Hekkert, K. Jiang, L. Mytelka, L. Neij, G. Nemet, C. Wilson and P. Dannemand Andersen (2012). "Policies for the energy technology innovation system (ETIS)." Global Energy Assessment: Toward a Sustainable Future: 1665-1743.

Grubler, A., C. Wilson and G. Nemet (2016). "Apples, oranges, and consistent comparisons of the temporal dynamics of energy transitions." Energy Research & Social Science 22: 18-25.

Kriegler, E., N. Petermann, V. Krey, V. J. Schwanitz, G. Luderer, S. Ashina, V. Bosetti, J. Eom, A. Kitous and A. Méjean (2015). "Diagnostic indicators for integrated assessment models of climate policy." Technological Forecasting and Social Change 90: 45-61.

McCollum, D. L., C. Wilson, H. Pettifor, K. Ramea, V. Krey, K. Riahi, C. Bertram, Z. Lin, O. Y. Edelenbosch and S. Fujisawa (2016). "Improving the behavioral realism of global integrated assessment models: An application to consumers’ vehicle choices." Transportation Research Part D Transport and Environment.

Peters, G. P., R. M. Andrew, T. Boden, J. G. Canadell, P. Ciais, C. Le Quéré, G. Marland, M. R. Raupach and C. Wilson (2013). "The challenge to keep global warming below 2 C." Nature Climate Change 3(1): 4-6.

Pettifor, H., C. Wilson and G. Chryssochoidis (2015). "The appeal of the green deal: Empirical evidence for the influence of energy efficiency policy on renovating homeowners." Energy Policy 79: 161-176.

Riahi, K., F. Dentener, D. Gielen, A. Grubler, J. Jewell, Z. Klimont, V. Krey, D. McCollum, S. Pachauri and S. Rao (2012). "Energy pathways for sustainable development."

Wilson, C., L. Crane and G. Chryssochoidis (2015). "Why do homeowners renovate energy efficiently? Contrasting perspectives and implications for policy." Energy Research & Social Science 7: 12-22.

Wilson, C. and H. Dowlatabadi (2007). "Models of decision making and residential energy use." Annu. Rev. Environ. Resour. 32: 169-203.

Wilson, C., T. Hargreaves and R. Hauxwell-Baldwin (2015). "Smart homes and their users: a systematic analysis and key challenges." Personal and Ubiquitous Computing 19(2): 463-476.

Wilson, C. and T. McDaniels (2007). "Structured decision-making to link climate change and sustainable development." Climate Policy 7(4): 353-370.

Further publications:


Ideas & insights
Research areas

Contact information


Phone: +44 (0)1603 591386

Postal Address:
Tyndall Centre (ENV), ZICER 1.18 University of East Anglia, Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK.