Houwing, M., P.W. Heijnen and I. Bouwmans (2006), Socio-Technical Complexity in Energy Infrastructures - Conceptual Framework to Study the Impact of Domestic Level Energy Generation, Storage and Exchange, in: Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, 8-11 October 2006, Taipei, Taiwan.
Household level energy conversion, storage and exchange technologies are assumed to pervade the energy infrastructure in the future. These novel technologies willinfluence the total infrastructure in a bottom-up way; both technically and socially. Not only the physical networks, but also the social actor network consisting of households, network managers, energy suppliers and producers is influenced. This paper describes and conceptualizes a complex systems approach towards energy infrastructures based on a large penetration of decentralized technologies. Households thereby contain an energy hub; an interface between a number of energy sources and loads. Households can interact with each other and with other actors via their hubs. Our approach paves the way for modelling the socio-technical complexity via Agent-Based Modelling (ABM) and for subsequent exploratory simulations.