Identifying research supporting the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Atakan Kara, Corinna Voll, Rasmus Nissen: Mapping Energy Technology : A supply of energy is crucial for human demands, but how do we extract, manage and access it?. 2019.


Energy use for human plans and programs have contributed to global climate change and related crises, which in turn are impacting human relation to energy. As such, not only are new methods of energy generation, distribution and storage emerging; but also bringing along with them new modes of technical innovation and social organization.

While some of these technologies prioritize quickly securing the energy supply for humans when faced with environmental adversity (such as fracking, nuclear power…), others focus on environmental regeneration and limiting human impact on nature (such as renewable energies). Furthermore, these developments expand and warp ways in which energy is socially, politically, economically organized. Struggles about prioritization, expertise and boundaries appear which make energy technology controversial.

We want to better understand the shape of this controversy. In order to do so, we investigate the landscape of energy technology on a public open source medium. Wikipedia provides us good starting point to dive into the different themes, conflicts and shifts related to energy technology. The results of our investigation and mapping compel us to pursue the debates taking place in this realm further. Through investigating Scopus, we delve deeper into the controversy and uncover the debates in the scientific community surrounding the currently most prominent field in energy technology: renewable energy. Within the field, the controversy surrounding the methods of distribution, generation and storage of energy proved interesting, as well as the questions of efficiency and reliability which were linked externally to ‘clean’ nuclear energy.

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