Research

The energy-efficiency gap is the subject of intense debate. How big is it? What policies can be implemented to help reduce energy consumption and close the gap? Centered among extraordinary multidisciplinary expertise at the University of California, Berkeley, University of Chicago, and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, E2e is in a unique position to leverage cutting-edge scientific and economic insights on the causes of the persistent efficiency gap. E2e will focus these talents on solving one of the most perplexing energy questions today and communicate those findings to policymakers and the public.

The E2e Project’s research generates rigorous and accurate evaluations of energy-efficiency technologies and programs using state-of-the-art empirical methodologies. One powerful tool is the Randomized Controlled Trial (RCT). RCTs are a well-known form of experimental research, and are the gold standard for evaluating the effectiveness of programs in a wide variety of fields, including medicine, marketing, and social programs. For more information on the application of RCTs for energy efficiency, we have developed a brief primer - Randomized Controlled Trials in Evaluating Energy-Efficiency Programs.


Current Projects

The knowledge created by E2e aims to identify the difference between what’s technically possible for energy efficiency and what is practically achievable. Through our analyses of energy use and energy efficiency, we have come to believe that the most promising way to make progress narrowing the energy efficiency gap is to conduct a series of targeted studies on particular sectors or programs. It is unlikely that there is a single explanation for the energy efficiency gap.

E2e faculty affiliates are engaged in randomized control trials of energy use and behaviors that affect energy use. Ongoing projects include path-breaking randomized control trials that: evaluate a federal energy efficiency program; measure the determinants of why households take-up energy efficiency investments and the returns to those investments; and determine, in conjunction with a major automobile manufacturer, the effect of fuel efficiency information on vehicle purchase decisions. Our approach is exemplified in the active research projects described below, click on the title for more.

 
Evaluating the Returns to Residential Energy Efficiency in Baltimore

Hunt Allcott and Michael Greenstone


 
Evaluating New Advanced Energy Monitoring System Designed to Save Industry Energy and Money

Christopher Knittel, Michael Greenstone, and Catherine Wolfram


 
Evaluating Energy Efficiency Upgrades to K-12 Public Schools in California Investor-Owned Utility Territories

Fiona Burlig, Christopher Knittel, David Rapson, Mar Reguant, and Catherine Wolfram


 
Incorporating Experimental Design Techniques into Energy Efficiency Program Evaluation

Maximilian Auffhammer, Meredith Fowlie, and Catherine Wolfram


 
Behavior Change to Save Energy in Low-Income, Urban Households

Sebastien Houde and Catherine Wolfram


 
Consumer Willingness to Pay for Fuel Economy: A Randomized Control Trial Approach

Hunt Allcott, Christopher Knittel, and Emily Kolinsky-Morris


 
Cost-Benefit Analysis of Home Energy Conservation Investments and Greenhouse Gas Reduction

Hunt Allcott and Michael Greenstone