About the project

Data collection

Household interviews

We conducted in-depth interviews with each of the 55 participating households to gather data on their houses, their energy use patterns and their opinions about energy consumption.

Eco-eye Smart EDMEnergy display monitors (EDM)

Each household received an EDM (the 'Eco-eye Smart') to record their electricity consumption over the course of the project. We collected the data saved on the EDM’s memory card three times in 18 months. We later analysed the data and developed reports for each household summarizing and explaining their data and reporting data from comparable houses in the area. Households also received some advice on saving energy which was tailored to their observed energy consumption patterns.

Focus groups

Focus groupWe held three group discussions in each of the four communities, towards the beginning, middle and end of the project. Between six and 16 participants attended these meetings, which were held in local venues over food and drink provided by local caterers. Each meeting lasted for approximately 90 minutes and were facilitated by the same member of the research team. The facilitator asked participants to reflect upon their household energy use, on how they learn about energy saving/efficiency, and on what they think are effective or useful ways of learning about energy. Other discussion topics included using the EDM at home, trusted sources of energy information, barriers to making changes in energy use, and UK government energy policies and schemes (e.g., the Green Deal, ECO).

Community actions

Explained in detail on page Community actions.

Impact questionnaire

At the end of the project, we sent participating households a short questionnaire about the overall impact of the project on their energy use and saving.