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Rebecca Willis

Rebecca Willis

Researcher in Environmental Policy and Politics, Lancaster University
Rebecca is a PhD candidate at Lancaster University. Her research focuses on environment, climate and energy policy. Her current project at Lancaster University, a collaboration with Green Alliance, investigates how politicians understand and respond to climate change. She established Green Alliance’s Climate Leadership Programme in 2009, working with politicians to develop their understanding of climate change. The research looks at how UK Members of Parliament understand what climate change means for their role at the national level and in their constituencies, and how to best support them in taking action.

In her work on energy policy, she focuses on the role of individuals within energy systems. In 2006, she published "Grid 2.0: The next generation" which charts how energy innovations, including distributed generation and ICT-enabled applications, imply a radically different role for the energy consumer, and require a different business and regulatory strategy.

Since then, her research has included a profile of consumer-oriented low-carbon innovations (The Disrupters, published in 2007 by Nesta and Demos); several investigations into community ownership models for energy, including work for the British Academy (2016), Co-operatives UK (2011& 2015), the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and private energy developer Airvolution (unpublished consultancy); and Demanding Less, a study examining ways to integrate energy demand issues into mainstream energy policy (2011, with Prof Nick Eyre). She also acts as an advisor to the Lake District National Park, where she helped to establish the UK’s first local carbon budget.

Rebecca is a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of RCUK’s Energy Programme and advises the iGov initiative at the University of Exeter. She is a Fellow of the Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity (CUSP) and a Trustee of the New Economics Foundation. From 2011-15 she was a Council Member of the Natural Environment Research Council, and from 2004-11,Vice-Chair of the UK Sustainable Development Commission, advising the Prime Minister and First Ministers of the devolved administrations.

Rebecca is an Associate of the think tank Green Alliance and from 2001-4 served as its director. Previously, she spent two years as a policy adviser at the European Parliament in Brussels, specialising in international environmental issues.

Climate Change Series

What Boris Johnson's government needs to do to show it is serious on climate change

Dec 16, 2019 04:02 am UTC| Insights & Views Politics

Climate change was higher profile than ever in the UK election campaign, with parties competing hard over their offer to concerned voters. But this was a debate that the Conservatives who won a landslide majority largely...

The stark truth about UK government climate action: there is no one in charge

Jul 13, 2019 06:11 am UTC| Insights & Views Politics

The UKs climate change targets are world-leading. Yet there is no clear plan in place to achieve them. That is the stark message of a new progress report from the governments official advisers, the Committee on Climate...

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Economy

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‘Final Fantasy 16’ gets provisional M age rating

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