Sylvia Breukers, PhD
Sylvia Breukers focuses on how sustainability transition processes impact and are impacted by people, addressing the political-institutional, social and societal dimension of these processes. Topics addressed include among others user engagement in the design and implementation of new technologies and systems; behavioural change in relation to participatory processes; sustainable lifestyles and practices; stakeholder dialogue processes; community based energy initiatives in ‘smart grid’ developments; institutional arrangements to tackle energy poverty. Her work addresses mostly energy transition challenges, but also climate adaptation in urban areas (e.g. co-production of nature based solutions in urban environments).
She has a Master’s Degree in Political Science, International Relations (politics of developmental issues in relation to environmental disputes in Southeast Asia). Her PhD research (2001-2006) addressed the social, political and institutional conditions for onshore wind power deployment – comparing the Netherlands, North-Rhine Westphalia and England (University of Amsterdam, 2007). At Utrecht University (2006-2008), she conducted research on the use of stakeholder dialogue methodology in highly controversial debates. Before joining DuneWorks in 2012, she worked at the Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN – today TNO) on projects addressing behavioural change and energy efficiency; project developers views and approaches with regard to citizen participation in Carbon Capture and Storage; and on Sustainable Lifestyles.