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Business model innovations for renewable energy prosumer development in Germany

  • In Germany, the number of renewable energy prosumers has increased rapidly since 2000. However, the development of prosumers has faced and will continue to face various economic, social, and technological challenges, which have triggered the emergence of a number of innovative business models (BM). This paper enriches the empirical basis for prosumer-oriented BMs by investigating two BM innovations in Germany (P2P electricity trading and aggregation of small-size prosumers) drawing on business model and socio-technical transition theories. A mix of qualitative data collection methods, including document analysis and semi-structured expert interviews, was applied. We found that while both BMs can potentially address the challenges associatedIn Germany, the number of renewable energy prosumers has increased rapidly since 2000. However, the development of prosumers has faced and will continue to face various economic, social, and technological challenges, which have triggered the emergence of a number of innovative business models (BM). This paper enriches the empirical basis for prosumer-oriented BMs by investigating two BM innovations in Germany (P2P electricity trading and aggregation of small-size prosumers) drawing on business model and socio-technical transition theories. A mix of qualitative data collection methods, including document analysis and semi-structured expert interviews, was applied. We found that while both BMs can potentially address the challenges associated with renewable energy prosumer development in Germany, small-scale prosumers’ participation in both BMs has been limited so far. We identified various internal and external drivers and barriers for scaling up these BMs for prosumer development in Germany. Despite these barriers, both aggregation and centralized P2P targeting prosumers may potentially be also taken up by incumbent market actors such as utilities. Decentralized P2P on the other hand still faces significant internal and external barriers for upscaling. Based on the analysis, the paper provides policy recommendations with respect to the identified drivers and barriers. From a theoretical perspective, our findings provide further evidence to challenge the dichotomous understanding of niche actors and incumbents, the latter of which are often theorized to be resistant to radical innovations.show moreshow less

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Metadaten
Document Type:Peer-Reviewed Article
Author:Chun Xia-Bauer, Florin Vondung, Stefan Thomas, Raphael Moser
URN (citable link):https://nbn-resolving.org/urn:nbn:de:bsz:wup4-opus-80036
DOI (citable link):https://doi.org/10.3390/su14137545
Year of Publication:2022
Language:English
Source Title (English):Sustainability
Volume:14
Issue:13
Article Number:7545
Divisions:Energie-, Verkehrs- und Klimapolitik
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Wirtschaft
OpenAIRE:OpenAIRE
Licence:License LogoCreative Commons - CC BY - Namensnennung 4.0 International