H4 - Reducing uncertainty of both technology and social costs of ORE

H - Marine Planning and Governance

Status - published
Last updated on: 26/03/2020


There is no agreed process to evaluate the whole-system benefits of offshore renewable energy, including technology and social costs and benefits. Nor is it established how to identify and qualify/quantify the well-being from employment, identity and cultural aspects of future ORE industries


Analysis through the development of a whole-systems model to facilitate both economic and socioeconomic benefits of ORE. Development of methods to assess and communicate the range of social benefits and well-being from future large scale ORE developments

Context And Need


There is a need to understand and qualify/quantify the benefits of ORE beyond low carbon electricity by analysing salient factors and valuation of a range of social benefits information on social capital/well-being.


This need could be met through the development of methods to assess and communicate the range of social benefits and well-being from future large scale ORE developments. Interdisciplinary funds are needed to encourage experts in the social sciences to work directly with the engineers and ecologists in design of ORE.


The lack of a standardised and validated approach to marine planning for ORE developments is holding back the development of the ORE sector and establishing such an approach is necessary to allow policymakers and investors to make informed decisions on the funding of the ORE sector.

Impact Potential

A standardised and validated approach to ORE marine planning would facilitate deployment, which would enable learning-by-doing, which would in turn reduce CAPEX from economies of scale and OPEX from operational experience.

Reducing uncertainty in technology and social costs of ORE will help reduce non-technical barriers to sector development and will lower costs of both CAPEX and OPEX significantly by reducing the risk of opposition due to fuller understanding of potential benefits of ORE.

New approaches and models will be cutting edge science

Research Status

Individual models currently exist but a standard, whole-system approach is required.

There are expert groups, frameworks and models around the world as well as in UK

1) UKERC Societal Preferences, Affordability & Trust

2) The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) Workshop

3) WWF Wellbeing and Renewables

4) Natural Capital, Stanford, USA www.naturalcapitalproject.stanford.edu


Links to Industry Priorities:

Also Offshore Wind Innovation Hub - O&M and Windfarm Lifecycle innovation priorities

Offshore Wind Innovation Hub Roadmap Data Generating and standardising social and economic impact methodology


We would also like to invite UK researchers and industry stakeholders within ORE to submit links to research projects, both past and present, for inclusion within the landscape.

Therefore, if you have a UK-based research project within an area of ORE that you feel is relevant to a specific research theme or challenge within the Research Landscape, click HERE to submit your research project to the research landscape


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