The Energy Transition: Economics and Policy

Course overview

Worldwide, the energy transition is underway. Whereas there is consensus regarding the need to reduce carbon emissions, promote renewables, and improve energy efficiency, there is still controversy regarding the optimal choice of policies to achieve those goals. Policies differ in their efficiency impacts (i.e., whether they induce higher or lower costs), but also on their distributional implications (i.e., whether they create winners and losers). Furthermore, agents’ behavioral biases might impact the success or failure of the chosen policies.

With this triple focus on efficiency, equity and behavioral considerations, the BSE Intensive Course on The Energy Transition: Economics and Policy will provide participants (whether economists, engineers, or lawyers, working for firms or in regulatory agencies) with a thorough understanding of the most recent economic insights to analyze the performance of current and potential energy and climate policies. The course will mainly review policies affecting the transportation and power sectors, as well as the competition policy issues that are likely to arise during the energy transition. The program’s faculty includes leading international scholars and practitioners with extensive experience in the application of economic techniques for designing and assessing the performance of energy and climate policies.

Course directors

facultyNatalia Fabra
PhD, European University Institute
Universidad Carlos III de Madrid


facultyMassimo Motta
PhD, Université Catholique de Louvain

Key benefits

  • Review established and recent economic theories on how renewable-dominated electricity markets will work
  • Identify the distinguishing economic features and likely effects of energy and climate policies, and understand how existing policies could be improved
  • Understand the future performance of renewables-dominated electricity markets, and the likely impacts on conventional producers
  • Explore the basic principles in experimental economics as a means of assessing the performance of policy interventions
  • Understand the role of behavioral motivations in inducing energy conservation and investment in energy efficiency
  • Identify the effects of environmental taxes as well as the distributive implications of tax choices in the transportation sector
  • Learn to assess the regulatory and market risks of firms and agents involved in the energy transition
  • Discuss the competition policy implications that arise during the energy transition
  • Debate over recent reports and papers on the energy transition, and current as well as proposed regulatory energy and climate policies

The June 2020 edition of this course has been canceled due to the coronavirus health crisis.

New dates for professional courses will be announced once universities are able to safely resume on-campus activities.

Cancelation procedures for 2020 edition