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Assessing the driving factors for energy management program adoption

Aida Sa, Patrik Thollander and Enrico Cagno

Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 2017, vol. 74, issue C, 538-547

Abstract: The concept of energy management (EnM) became a topical issue in industrial settings as a result of the energy crises that affected the global community in the 1970s. However, EnM was not implemented within industry with all its potential to improve energy security, raise the maturity level of EnM and increase sustainability. According to the results of previous empirical investigations, the expected interest in energy programs is not found and there is no clear understanding about program adoption criteria within an industry. Keeping in mind the adoption of energy investment through conformation with financial analysis and choosing the investments through contextual factors in the organization (e.g. organizational energy culture, power relationships, EnM system, expertise availability, managers’ mindset) together with characteristics of EnM program as two macro perspectives in energy efficiency literature, this paper aims to understand the main driving factors which lead organizations to either adopt or not adopt a particular program (always with respect to energy management). Moreover, it aims to express the impact of those driving forces of implementing a successful EnM program which could contribute to better understanding of suitable EnM configuration. The investigation has been conducted as a multiple case study involving 15 manufacturing companies of varying size and in different sectors located in Sweden. After analyzing the minimum required steps to establish EnM, assessing the adoption of practices according to their energy strategy, and through assessing EnM maturity level, we found a low level of risk (which arises from lack of certainty and awareness) and the program's alignment with the core business as prominent driving factors for all sizes which foster positive investment decision making through top management. On the contrary, complexity of industry (for large manufacturing companies) and access to capital (for small and medium-sized companies) are the main barriers to adopting those programs.

Keywords: Energy management; Assessment; Driving factors; Manufacturing industry; Energy efficiency (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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