Smart Innovation Norway’s EU project list of fame expands again:

“An opportunity to showcase our skills in the field of machine learning and AI”

In the beginning of May, Smart Innovation Norway got word that the company has won its 13th Horizon 2020 project. The ENCHANT proposal, coordinated by NTNU, obtained a high score from the European Commission.

By Mari Kristine Buckholm, 14th of May 2020

“The overall objective for ENCHANT is to test established science-based behavioural intervention techniques under controlled conditions, targeting millions of European citizens using a Randomized Control Trial (RCT) approach in order to improve overall energy efficiency,” explains Joseph Negreira, Section Head International Research at Smart Innovation Norway.

The full title of the ENCHANT project is “Energy Efficiency through behaviour change transition strategies” and it will be Smart Innovation Norway’s 13th EU Horizon 2020 project.

“The project will provide our company with an opportunity to showcase and further develop our skills in the field of machine learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI). It represents another success story among Smart Innovation Norway’s other Horizon 2020 projects, improving our international reputation and strengthening our partnership and collaboration with first class international institutions,” says Negreira (photo).

18 European partners

There is a total of 18 European partners in the ENCHANT project, including five Norwegian partners, three Italian partners, three Turkish partners, four Romanian partners, two Austrian partners, and one German partners. The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) is the project coordinator.

“Smart Innovation Norway is one of the scientific partners in ENCHANT and will lead one work package, WP6. The main tasks for us are to develop a web-based decisions tool for energy providers, NGOs and municipalities, and coordinate the user partners to implement the tool,” notes Negreira.

In addition, Smart Innovation Norway will participate in other tasks related to designing the intervention methodology and providing support in evaluating the impacts of some specific actions.

Informed decision tool

The ENCHANT project will roll out interventions through already existing communication channels (used by energy providers, municipalities, environmental NGOs) and thus test their effects in real life settings.

“Through a systematic evaluation of data gathered from implementing these interventions, in combination with re-analysing already existing data, ENCHANT will design an empirically informed decision tool for impactful campaign design targeting energy-efficiency, relevant for a number of public and private actors, like policymakers,” informs Negreira.

The ENCHANT proposal that was submitted to the European Commission in January was evaluated as “Very good”. The overall budget for the project is 1,999,656.25 €, and the Smart Innovation Norway budget will be around 10% of the total, which is 191,250.00 €.

Tackling the climate change

Negreira believes part of the reason why the project got funding is that there is a need in Europe for tools and solutions through which individual consumers behaviour could be affected.

“This arises from the fact that improving energy efficiency and making sustainable energy decisions are the core weapons to tackle the climate change. The project could show the excellence of the proposed solution, right partners involved and credible execution plan. The impact of the project was also well-considered in the evaluation,” he says.

The project is expected to start after the summer and will last for 30 months. The main expected impact of ENCHANT is the leverage of the energy efficiency potential using behavioural science.

ENCHANT consortium

  • Norwegian partners: Norges Teknisk-Naturvitenskapelige Universitet (NTNU) and Viken fylkeskommune (members of the Smart Energy Market NCE cluster), NTNU Samfunnsforskning AS, Norges Naturvernforbund and Smart Innovation Norway
  • Italian partners: Universita Degli Studi Roma Tre, Fondazione Roffredo Caetani Onlus and Energia Positiva Societa Cooperativa
  • Turkish partners: Izmir Ekonomi Universitesi, Izmir Buyuksehir Belediyesi and Gediz Elektrik Perakende Satis AS
  • Romanian partners: Universitatea Babes Bolyai, Electrica Furnizare S.A., Municipul Cluj-Napoca, Asociatia Centrul pentru Studiul Democratiei
  • Austrian partners: Energieinstitut An Der Johannes Kepler Universitat Linz Verein and Energie Kompass GmbH
  • German partner: Badenova AG & CO KG