Internal events

(open to consortium members only)

People and offshore wind

Join an online meeting about the “People and offshore wind” case study 27 February, from 09:00 to 11:30. Note that this event will be in Norwegian. Open to members of FME NorthWind partner organisations only. Information: Inger Marie Malvik.

Goals

  • Inform participants about the user case ‘People and Offshore Wind’ and its purpose (see “About the user case” below for more information).
  • Present relevant research and experiences from industry and administration.
  • Collect valuable inputs and ideas for the user case through group work and discussions.

Programme (tentative)

  • Welcome to the workshop!
  • Fair development of offshore wind power – perspectives from social science research
  • Involvement of local communities – experiences from the industry
  • Positive societal effects for the local population – an administrative perspective
  • Workshop with input for fieldwork on Utsira

About the user case

In this user case, a collaboration between FME NorthWind and FME NTRANS; we look more closely at the potential to create mutual learning and knowledge for an inclusive and fair development of renewable energy projects in the future, through meaningful dialogue and cooperation between offshore wind developers, local, regional and national authorities, local businesses and organisations, and not least residents of the area.

Background

Utsira Nord is one of two areas in Norway that were earmarked for offshore wind development in 2020. This occurs through a process where companies compete for the rights to develop offshore wind projects in the specified area. For the development to become a positive milestone in Norway’s energy production history, it is important to emphasise positive coexistence and sustainability. This involves active participation from residents, as well as regional stakeholders.

Utsira Nord’s development will take several years, and by starting research now and following the development over time, the user case will examine how to design inclusive participation processes that make the local communities in Haugalandet, such as Utsira, feel that the offshore wind development is fair and legitimate.

The first local community to be examined as part of the user case is Utsira, a small island municipality of about 200 residents. Considering the limitations related to population, land use, energy, and economy, the development of Utsira Nord will have consequences for the community – for example through the visibility of the wind turbines from the island. Utsira municipality has already been engaged in the development for about a decade, to reduce negative impacts while seeking to achieve as many benefits as possible for local development. The residents of Utsira have firsthand experience with wind turbines, as they already have two land-based turbines on the island. Although Utsira Nord will be on a completely different scale, the findings from Byantropologene‘s earlier case study on land-based wind are interesting in terms of how the community perceives the development at sea.

People sitting around a table, discussing.
Discussing offshore wind at Utsira. Photo: Sara Heidenreich

Goals

The overarching goal of the project is to generate insight into the sustainable development of offshore wind, focusing on establishing a development method that is perceived as fair and legitimate by the local communities in the Haugaland region.

Focus points related to the goal

1. Positive and negative effects of offshore wind

  • Understand the perspectives by examining how different actors in the local communities experience offshore wind projects and identify potential conflicts.
  • Explore opportunities together with residents and local actors on how offshore wind development can make positive contributions to the local communities.

2. Inclusive and fair process

  • Test how the process can be made inclusive by identifying optimal ways for actors in the local communities to participate and get involved.
  • Design and implement a democratic process that is fair and inclusive, where the value of participation itself is emphasised, regardless of the outcome related to development.

Key research questions

  • How do offshore wind projects affect local communities, seen from the perspectives of different actors?
  • How can participation from local communities be optimised to create an inclusive process in offshore wind development?
  • How can a democratic process be designed and implemented to ensure fairness in offshore wind development?

Collaboration partners

  • The project is initiated by Fred Olsen Seawind as part of the research centre FME NorthWind.
  • Byantropologene is responsible for privacy and implementation of the project.
  • The user case is developed in collaboration with the research centres FME NorthWind and FME NTRANS.

Target groups and methods

The user case targets local communities both on the island of Utsira and in related areas on the mainland: Haugalandet, i.e. areas that will be affected by the development of Utsira Nord. The main methods that will be used are qualitative to study how residents, local authorities, and local businesses engage in the development of offshore wind.

Decisions related to the development of Utsira Nord are made mainly at the national level. Therefore, the user case will also focus on creating arenas for dialogue between local and national authorities to contribute to mutual learning and influence development to reach a point where local communities perceive it as being fair and legitimate.

We will use qualitative methods such as in-depth interviews, focus group interviews, creative workshops, and digital ethnography. In addition, we will create common arenas by organising gatherings and dialogue meetings. In general, we will meet people where they are, on their terms.