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Green energy platform economics – understanding platformization and sustainabilization in the energy sector

Tobias Menzel (Trust in Digital Services, Technische Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany and Einstein Center Digital Future, Berlin, Germany)
Timm Teubner (Trust in Digital Services, Technische Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany and Einstein Center Digital Future, Berlin, Germany)

International Journal of Energy Sector Management

ISSN: 1750-6220

Article publication date: 23 December 2020

Issue publication date: 12 May 2021

341

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present a conceptual framework for the emerging field of green energy platform economics.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors develop a conceptual framework based on a careful review of the existing literature, and research into the current provider landscape and insights from academic and industry experts. The authors also examine the implications for the energy sector’s value chain and derive a research agenda based on those areas where research still needs to be pursued.

Findings

The framework combines the spatial characteristics of platform models (residential/mobile) with the different types of platform business model (B2C/C2C/C2Grid). Using this framework, the authors illustrate how green energy platforms can fundamentally disrupt the conventional electricity value chain by enabling prosumers to market their assets, creating new arenas for trading and collaboration, and by increasing transparency and competition in the sector. The authors also identify areas where more research is required, particularly empirical studies into energy forms other than electricity and analyses of currently underrepresented aspects such as user interfaces and social interactions.

Social implications

Green energy platforms have the potential to contribute meaningfully to the energy sector’s decarbonization, digitalization and decentralization, and hence to the deceleration of climate change.

Originality/value

This paper is among the first to provide a holistic perspective on platformization in the energy sector. It also offers a new perspective on platform economics in general that is based on the unique characteristics of energy as an economic good (intangibility, homogeneity, credence good).

Keywords

Citation

Menzel, T. and Teubner, T. (2021), "Green energy platform economics – understanding platformization and sustainabilization in the energy sector", International Journal of Energy Sector Management, Vol. 15 No. 3, pp. 456-475. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJESM-05-2020-0022

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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