Intermediaries in the energy transition: The invisible work of creating markets for sustainable technology solutions (TRIPOD)

TRIPOD is a new project funded by the Academy of Finland and led by Sampsa Hyysalo at Aalto University School of Art and Design. Consortium partners include Syke (Finnish Environment Institute), Aalto University School of Business, and Consumer Society Research Centre (CSRC), University of Helsinki. TRIPOD investigates the role of intermediation in energy transitions by specifying what work intermediation performs in different actor configurations and contexts. We focus on solutions for energy efficiency, distributed electricity generation, heating systems based on renewable energy sources, and the related solutions for timing of consumption and storage of electricity and/or heat. The objectives of TRIPOD are to

  1. Identify and assess the role of intermediaries in creating, channeling and coordinating market and broader societal demand for new low carbon technologies and services and in adapting these technologies to local contexts.
  2. Establish the influence of different intermediary organizations and forms of work on different types of energy innovation and energy transition processes.
  3. Examine how energy transition intermediaries come into being, establish their functional roles, evolve, and gain legitimacy.
  4. Compare intermediation in different contexts (between government and citizens, between energy and technology providers and users) and in different actor configurations (including or excluding certain market/societal actors) and organizational settings.
  5. Distinguish between generic aspects of intermediation in energy transitions, and aspects that are specific to particular contexts or configurations.

CSRC is in charge of sub-project 1, which buildings on case studies of intermediation in the interface between energy consumption and production. Contact: Eva Heiskanen ( ja Kaisa Matschoss (

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