TOP-UP: TOP-down energy projects as catalysators for bottom-UP local energy initiatives

Project Details


TOP-UP studies how TOP-down initiated heat networks can play a central role in integrated regional energy systems and investigates
how these top-down actions can empower bottom-up participation among local actors and sectors to achieve the region's ambitious
energy targets.
TOP-UP incorporates expertise in modelling, automation, social sciences and practice to optimize regional energy systems. It focuses
on integrating heat and electricity networks and identifies and fosters optimal local actor/sector participation levels. TOP-UP
aims to satisfy actors/sectors' needs and preferences and to optimize regional energy system performance.
TOP-UP develops tailored solutions for the Groningen (NL) and Copenhagen (DK) energy systems - which prioritize changes to their
heat networks due to unique regional challenges - and studies how these solutions can be scaled and customized to other regions,
making the best use of local renewables and reducing the dependency on fossil fuels.

Layman's description

Energy systems require fundamental transformative changes to enable sustainable climate-friendly societies. More concretely, SET-Plan
Action 4 stresses that energy systems need to be flexible, tailored to local energy demands and requirements, and empower the active
participation of local citizens, stakeholders and need-owners from different sectors (from now local actors).
TOP-UP addresses these key challenges by focusing on how district heat networks can play a central role in the integrated regional
energy system. Specifically, TOP-UP optimizes the interplay between regional heat and electricity networks, and examines how
top-down actions within these networks can empower local actors to actively participate in the sustainable energy transition (i.e., all
actions initiated by local actors to make the energy system more sustainable and stable, varying from energy efficiency measures and
behavioral changes, to providing energy and storage capacity to the grid). Thereby, TOP-UP strongly contributes to identifying and
reaching optimal levels of bottom-up participation, increases the effective use of renewables, reduces the reliance on fossil fuels, and
makes the regional energy system more sustainable, flexible and stable.
Short titleTOP-UP
Effective start/end date01/12/201930/11/2022

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This project contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.