This handbook offers a comprehensive transdisciplinary examination of the research and practices that constitute the emerging research agenda in energy democracy.

With protests over fossil fuels and controversies over nuclear and renewable energy technologies, democratic ideals have contributed to an emerging social movement. Energy democracy captures this movement and addresses the issues of energy access, ownership, and participation at a time when there are expanding social, political, environmental, and economic demands on energy systems. This volume defines energy democracy as both a social movement and an academic area of study and examines it through a social science and humanities lens, explaining key concepts and reflecting state-of-the-art research. The collection is comprised of six parts:

1 Scalar Dimensions of Power and Governance in Energy Democracy

2 Discourses of Energy Democracy

3 Grassroots and Critical Modes of Action

4 Democratic and Participatory Principles

5 Energy Resource Tensions

6 Energy Democracies in Practice

The vision of this handbook is explicitly transdisciplinary and global, including contributions from interdisciplinary international scholars and practitioners. The Routledge Handbook of Energy Democracy will be the premier source for all students and researchers interested in the field of energy, including policy, politics, transitions, access, justice, and public participation.

chapter 1|14 pages

Energy democracy

An introduction

part I|71 pages

Scalar dimensions of power and governance in energy democracy

chapter 3|14 pages

International energy governance

Opportunities and challenges for democratic politics

chapter 5|15 pages

Energy democracy at the scale of Indigenous governance

Indigenous Native American struggles for democracy, justice, and decolonization

chapter 6|16 pages

Conceptualizing energy democracy using the multiple streams framework

Actors, public participation, and scale in energy transitions

chapter 7|4 pages

Part I response

part II|66 pages

Discourses of energy democracy

chapter 8|3 pages

Discourses of energy democracy


chapter 9|12 pages

Energy security

From security of supply to public participation

chapter 10|14 pages

The premise and the promise

Energy poverty, capabilities, and the language of moral commitments

chapter 12|17 pages

Energy dominance

chapter 13|3 pages

Part II response

part III|65 pages

Grassroots and critical modes of action

chapter 14|3 pages

Grassroots and critical modes of action


chapter 15|14 pages

The state or the citizens for energy democracy?

Municipal and cooperative models in the German energy transition

chapter 16|15 pages

Institutionalizing energy democracy

The promises and pitfalls of electricity cooperative development

chapter 17|13 pages

A feminist lens on energy democracy

Redistributing power and resisting oppression through renewable transformation

chapter 19|3 pages

Part III response

part IV|65 pages

Democratic and participatory principles

chapter 21|15 pages

Splitting (over) the atom

Nuclear energy and democratic conflict

chapter 24|10 pages

Participation in nondemocracies

Rural Thailand as a site of energy democracy

chapter 25|4 pages

Part IV response

part V|71 pages

Energy resource tensions

chapter 26|2 pages

Energy resource tensions


chapter 28|16 pages

A fracked society

Multistate media analysis of hydraulic fracturing in the United States

chapter 30|16 pages

Postcards from the future

A case study in Hawaii's transition to wind and solar energy

chapter 31|3 pages

Part V response

part VI|87 pages

Energy democracies in practice

chapter 32|3 pages

Energy democracies in practice


chapter 33|14 pages

Carbon-neutral pledges

Public opinions, opportunities, and challenges for energy democracy

chapter 34|17 pages

Beyond the ivory tower

Exploring the role of universities toward sustainable energy transitions in postdisaster environments

chapter 36|12 pages

Energy democracy in practice

Centering energy sovereignty in rural communities and Tribal Nations

chapter 37|4 pages

Part VI response

chapter 38|9 pages


The future of energy democracies

chapter 39|11 pages


Energy democracy—episode 196 of Cultures of Energy Podcast