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Science Technology and Innovation Studies (STIS)
School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh
2.10 Old Surgeons’ Hall
High School Yards
Edinburgh UK EH1 1LZ
Dr Bolton is an interdisciplinary energy researcher with a background in mechanical engineering and subsequently in environmental social science. His work examines the policy, market and regulatory challenges of transforming high carbon energy systems and enabling the deployment and diffusion of low carbon technologies and practices. Drawing from science and technology studies, innovation studies, and governance perspectives, he explores the changing relationships between regulators, governments, energy companies, users and local authorities in the governance of energy systems at both the national and urban scales in the UK and internationally. Specific published work has examined the social shaping of electricity and heat distribution networks in the UK, the transformation of energy infrastructure in cities, and new investment patterns in the electricity generation sector.
Dr Bolton is a member of the School’s Energy and Society Research Group which brings together energy research in sociology, science, technology and innovation studies (STIS), social anthropology and political science.
Bolton, R, Hawkes, A (2013) ‘Infrastructure, Investment and the Low Carbon Transition’ in Mitchell, C, Watson, J and Britton, J (Eds), ‘New Challenges in Energy Security’, Palgrave Macmillan (Energy, Climate and the Environment), pp 137–160
Hall, S, Foxon, T, Bolton, R (2016) ‘Financing the civic energy sector: How financial institutions affect ownership models in Germany and the United Kingdom’, Energy Research & Social Science 12 (Feb-16) 5–15
Bolton, R, Foxon, TJ (2015) ‘Infrastructure transformation as a socio-technical process: Implications for the governance of energy distribution networks in the UK’, Technological Forecasting and Social Change 90 (Part B) 538–550
Bolton, R (2013) ‘Governing the energy transition: reality, illusion or necessity? Routledge Studies in Sustainability Transitions, G. Verbong, D. Loorbach (Eds.) (2012)’, Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions 7 73‑75
Bolton, R, Foxon, TJ (2011) ‘Governing infrastructure networks for a low carbon economy: co-evolution of technologies and institutions in UK electricity distribution networks’, Competition and Regulation in Network Industries 12 (2) 2‑26