Matching Items (2)

152079-Thumbnail Image.png

Energy efficiency policy in Arizona: public participation and expert consultation in the policy implementation process

Description

Many different levels of government, organizations, and programs actively shape the future of energy in Arizona, a state that lacks a comprehensive energy plan. Disparate actions by multiple actors may slow the energy policy process rather than expedite it. The

Many different levels of government, organizations, and programs actively shape the future of energy in Arizona, a state that lacks a comprehensive energy plan. Disparate actions by multiple actors may slow the energy policy process rather than expedite it. The absence of a state energy policy or plan raises questions about how multiple actors and ideas engage with state energy policy development and whether the absence of a comprehensive state plan can be understood. Improving how policy development is conceptualized and giving more focused attention to the mechanisms by which interested parties become involved in shaping Arizona energy policy. To explore these questions, I examine the future energy efficiency. Initially, public engagement mechanisms were examined for their role in policy creation from a theoretical perspective. Next a prominent public engagement forum that was dedicated to the topic of the Arizona's energy future was examined, mapping its process and conclusions onto a policy process model. The first part of this thesis involves an experimental expert consultation panel which was convened to amplify and refine the results of a public forum. The second part utilizes an online follow up survey to complete unfinished ideas from the focus group. The experiment flowed from a hypothesis that formal expert discussion on energy efficiency policies, guided by the recommendations put forth by the public engagement forum on energy in Arizona, would result in an increase in relevance while providing a forum for interdisciplinary collaboration that is atypical in today's energy discussions. This experiment was designed and evaluated utilizing a public engagement framework that incorporated theoretical and empirical elements. Specifically, I adapted elements of three methods of public and expert engagement used in policy development to create a consultation process that was contextualized to energy efficiency stakeholders in Arizona and their unique constraints. The goal of the consultation process was to refine preferences about policy options by expert stakeholders into actionable goals that could achieve advancement on policy implementation. As a corollary goal, the research set out to define implementation barriers, refine policy ideas, and operationalize Arizona-centric goals for the future of energy efficiency.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
2013

157656-Thumbnail Image.png

Institutional management for infrastructure resilience

Description

To improve the resilience of complex, interdependent infrastructures, we need to better understand the institutions that manage infrastructures and the work that they do. This research demonstrates that a key aspect of infrastructure resilience is the adequate institutional management of

To improve the resilience of complex, interdependent infrastructures, we need to better understand the institutions that manage infrastructures and the work that they do. This research demonstrates that a key aspect of infrastructure resilience is the adequate institutional management of infrastructures. This research analyzes the institutional dimension of infrastructure resilience using sociotechnical systems theory and, further, investigates the critical role of institutions for infrastructure resilience using a thorough analysis of water and energy systems in Arizona.

Infrastructure is not static, but dynamic. Institutions play a significant role in designing, building, maintaining, and upgrading dynamic infrastructures. Institutions create the appearance of infrastructure stability while dynamically changing infrastructures over time, which is resilience work. The resilience work of different institutions and organizations sustains, recovers, adapts, reconfigures, and transforms the physical structure on short, medium, and long temporal scales.

To better understand and analyze the dynamics of sociotechnical infrastructure resilience, this research examines several case studies. The first is the social and institutional arrangements for the allocation of resources from Hoover Dam. This research uses an institutional analysis framework and draws on the institutional landscape of water and energy systems in Arizona. In particular, this research illustrates how institutions contribute to differing resilience work at temporal scales while fabricating three types of institutional threads: lateral, vertical, and longitudinal threads.

This research also highlights the importance of institutional interdependence as a critical challenge for improving infrastructure resilience. Institutional changes in one system can disrupt other systems’ performance. The research examines this through case studies that explore how changes to water governance impact the energy system in Arizona. Groundwater regulations affect the operation of thermoelectric power plants which withdraw groundwater for cooling. Generation turbines, droughts, and water governance are all intertwined via institutions in Arizona.

This research, finally, expands and applies the interdependence perspective to a case study of forest management in Arizona. In a nutshell, the perilous combination of chronic droughts and the engineering resilience perspective jeopardizes urban water and energy systems. Wildfires caused by dense forests have legitimized an institutional transition, from thickening forests to thinning trees in Arizona.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
2019