Governing the transition of socio-technical systems: A case study of the development of smart grids in Korea

Daphne Ngar-yin MAH*, Johannes Marinus van der Vleuten, Jasper Chi-man Ip, Peter Ronald Hills

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper examines the motivations, processes and outcomes of the development of smart grids in South Korea through the perspectives of governance and innovation systems. Drawing on desktop research and semi-structured interviews, this paper has two major findings. First, the development of smart grids in Korea has been shaped by various factors including macroeconomic policy, the role of the government, and experimentation. The complex interactions between these factors at the landscape, regime and niche levels has impacted on the development of smart grids. Second, while Korea's government-led approach has its strengths in driving change, it has also exposed weaknesses in the country's ability to mobilise the private sector and consumer participation. Major obstacles including partial electricity market reform and public distrust exist. A systemic perspective is needed for policy in order to accommodate the changes required for smart grid development. Regulatory reforms, particularly price-setting mechanisms, and consumer engagement are priority areas for policy change.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-141
Number of pages9
JournalEnergy Policy
Volume45
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2012

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Energy(all)
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

User-Defined Keywords

  • Korea
  • Smart grid
  • Socio-technical systems

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