The first meeting of the Fuel Poverty Research Network (FPRN) was held on 14th April 2016. Hosted by the University of Sheffield, in collaboration with Sheffield Hallam University (CRESR) and the University of Salford (SHUSU), the day brought together roughly thirty members of the network, of which attendees spanned from academic, voluntary, and community and private sectors. The aim of the inaugural meeting was to collaboratively establish key objectives for the network, as well as identify possible activities, opportunities and strategies for working together and across sectors in the future.
Morning Session: Lightening presentations
In the morning, after a brief introduction to the FPRN, eleven ‘lightening-style’ five-minute presentations were given by attendees to provide snapshots of existing research and work related to fuel poverty.
Information about the presenters and links to their presentations can be found below:
Improving Energy Efficiency in the PRS: insights from the UK and NZ – Aimee Ambrose, Sheffield Hallam University
Fuel Poverty and the Right to Adequate Housing – Ben Christman, School of Law, Queen’s University Belfast
Commissioning research to inform fuel poverty advocacy – William Baker, Citizens Advice
Introducing the work of Kate de Selincourt, Journalist
A Social Practice Picture of Energy Deprivation – Rob Marchand, University of Sheffield
Five Minutes of Fuel Poverty Research from New Zealand – Kimberley O’Sullivan, University of Otago
Warm and Well Families -Vanessa Powell-Hoyland, Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council
Cold Homes and Mental Wellbeing – Graeme Sherriff, University of Salford
Experiences of People with Dementia Keeping Warm at home During Winter – Ben Thomas, Ulster University
Exploring the underpinnings of energy vulnerability in Central and Eastern Europe – Harriet Thompson & Neil Simcock, University of Manchester
Fuel Poverty Network – Angela Tod, University of Sheffield
Afternoon Session: Ketso
In the afternoon, attendees took part in an interactive and creative hands-on activity known as ‘Ketso’. Using the Ketso toolkit, the session set out to explore three key aspects related to the development of the network:
- ASSETS – What are our existing assets as a network?
- ASPIRATIONS – What do we want to achieve as a network?
- ACTIONS – What actions can help us move towards these aspirations, and overcome identified challenges along the way?
Bringing the afternoon’s activity to a close, attendees were asked to consider which ‘actions’ could be deemed ‘priority next steps’ in terms of the early stages of the network’s development. Suggestions included the establishment of core roles and responsibilities, steps to better engage with the media, ongoing events organisation, the introduction of a newsletter, and the creation of a database where relevant resources and member profiles could be found. One suggestion put forward by many of the members in attendance was the need to develop FPRN’s online presence – hence, the introduction of this website, the JISC mail account, and the FPRN Twitter profile (you can find us @FuelPovertyRN).