Training Early Start Researchers (ESRs) with an integrated understanding to become experts in the front line of the energy transition.


ENergy SYStems in TRAnsition (ENSYSTRA) trains 15 early stage researchers (ESRs) in all aspects of energy systems transition. The North Sea energy transition requires that technical sciences, social sciences and the humanities work together. ENSYSTRA therefore aims to train energy professionals with an integrated understanding to become experts in the front line of the energy transition.


Start date: 1 October 2017
End date: 31 September 2021


ENSYSTRA focuses on four main research lines. The project is designed to look at the interaction of technology, behaviour and governance, and to investigate how these interactions feed into and are linked to whole energy systems. PhD research subjects range from energy systems modelling, scenario analysis, technology development, socio-technical cultures, participatory approaches, investment modelling, market design and cross-border regulatory frameworks.

The ENSYSTRA researchers intensively interact with each other through joint research and collaboration between the partnering universities and research institutions. Each PhD candidate is being trained in state-of-the-art science in each of the relevant fields of energy system analysis, and is being guided in how to combine methodologies, data and insights from those disciplines.

Key of the programme will be to make the crucial connections between different methods and modelling approaches in energy system analysis, technology development, actor behaviour and in the interplay with markets and regulatory frameworks.

Our role

The project was initiated by New Energy Coalition (formerly Energy Academy Europe), as project lead during the acquisition phase. Currently, project coordinator is the University of Groningen.  We provide support in communication activities, and is responsible for several dissemination and training activities.


Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, Aalborg University, Chalmers University of Technology, Edinburgh University, Europa-Universität Flensburg & University of Stavanger.

Industry and government partners: Aalborg Portland, ARGE Netz, Community Energy Scotland, ENGIE, Göteborg Energi, IZT Berlin, Lyse, NAM, Norwegian Energy Partners, Norwegian Oil and Gas Association, Gasunie, Ocean Rainforest, Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult, Scottish Government, Scottish Power Energy Networks Holding, Sea NRG, Shell Global Solutions International, Statkraft Energi, ECN, Swedish Energy Agency, TNO, World Wind Energy Association & WPD Windmanager.


Dirk Kuiken is involved in this project from our organisation. If you have any questions regarding the project, feel free to contact us.