How to organize the energy transition in your own street

How to organize the energy transition in your own street

How can we achieve energy transition in the neighborhood?

Published: 24th November 2021 Last updated: 28th January 2022

Between 2017 and 2020, Martijn Groenleer and Petra Hofman of Tilburg University worked on a regional research, learning and experimentation project called Social Innovation Labs Energy Neutral Housing Stock (SMILE).

The goal was to experiment with neighborhood-based approaches in different types of neighborhoods and learn about what works in achieving the energy transition.

Martijn Groenleer

"How do you organize the energy transition, from the world to the neighborhood?" - Martijn Groenleer 

Together with the project partners, ten neighborhoods in the Hart van Brabant region were selected. In each of the ten neighborhoods, parties started working on the 'wicked problem' of neighborhood energy transition. Martijn and Petra have been working with these parties for three years to discover how they arrive at what approaches and what works. In this way they contribute to a better understanding of the social dimensions of how to realize the energy transition.

Petra Hofman

"Ultimately, it's about bringing the energy transition closer to residents" - Petra Hofman 


The reports (in Dutch) below contain insights, lessons and recommendations for policy and practice for municipalities, community initiatives, the region and other stakeholders. The insights are clustered around four important themes: forms of resident participation, role of smart connectors, role of local government, and 'labs' as a method for learning and innovating together around approaches to complex tasks.

Lessen voor Tilburg

Eindrapport SMILE