Energy and Behaviour at home: A review of intervention methods and practices

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

9 Citations (Scopus)


The transition of householders towards optimal energy use in the residential sector has proved to be challenging, with human energy-use behaviour been identified as one of the factors behind the setback. Social interventions
geared towards engaging and making energy end users aware of their energy consumption and its footprint on the environment have been conducted in the past. Forty-six papers on the outcome of these social intervention were reviewed and categorized in this article based on the major strategies applied in anticipation of behaviour change. This paper shares information on the techniques used for the interventions, to what degree each intervention was successful or not and why it was adjudged successful or otherwise. It further explores some of the problems associated with the interventions and their reporting, followed by suggestions on how study practices can be
improved. The techniques discussed include the use energy labels, energy performance certificates, energy auditing, prompts, norm appeals, commitments, economic incentives and disincentives, feedbacks, community based initiatives, benchmarking, goal setting and gamification. Feedbacks, gamification, goal setting and community-based initiatives proved to be the most effective as they all recorded average energy savings of above
20%. Interventions practices can be performed individually, though a combination of complementary intervention tools have been observed to be effective.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101238
JournalEnergy Research & Social Science
Early online date3 Aug 2019
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019


  • Behaviour transition
  • Energy use
  • Residential sector
  • Social intervention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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