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Table 2 Shared understanding of current energy system problems and a future vision

From: Collaborative energy visioning under conditions of illiberal democracy: results and recommendations from Ecuador

Categories Sub-categories Problem Vision
Energy planning Interconnection with national development plan No interconnection with the national sustainability plan The national plan sets the principles and values of the energy system
Planning horizon Short/middle political terms planning Long-term multi-stakeholder visions
Planning goal Only focus on electricity/short term: 90% hydropower in 2017 Zero fossil fuels in 2040
Regional integration approach National sovereignty: protectionism/competition with neighbour countries Regional sovereignty: renewable energy resources complementarity among countries
Enabling environments Financial mechanisms Only public investments with international Chinese loans and multilateral credits are directed to centralised extractive projects Private–public partnerships (PPP) attracting international direct investment
Knowledge production and transfer Lack of processes of knowledge transfer, production, research and development Existence of sectoral knowledge production loops. Cooperation between academia, state and industry via knowledge platforms
Capacity building Lack of capacities for system transformation Existence of sectoral learning loops. Cooperation between academia, state and industry via knowledge platforms
Technology and infrastructure Technological diversification in the supply Low: large hydro-thermal High: small and middle size poly-technological (mainly: hydro-solar + (biomass/waste/wind))
Energy conversion Promotion of fossil fuel-based refineries and fossil fuel-based infrastructure Bio-refineries and renewable power plants are in operation
Demand/consumption Fossil fuel-based technology use Electrification of the final uses
Regulatory frameworks Ownership of the infrastructure State-owned Private–public partnerships
Supply subsidies/incentives Fossil fuel subsidies and traditional electricity subsidies Transparent/fair competition between technologies
Demand subsidies/incentives Incentives for the use of fossil fuels Incentives for the use of efficient electricity-based technologies
Market access No regulations that incentivize the participation of private sector in the supply of renewable energy Regulations incentivize the participation of private sector in the supply of renewable energy via feed-n tariffs (FITs) and auctions
Institutional framework Degree of centralization in decision making Centralised and top-down Decentralised and centralised: bottom-up, middle-out and top-down
Market structure Mono/oligopolies Multi-SMEs
Cross-sectoral integration Disconnection of sectoral agendas Mutually consistent and reinforcing policy mixes
Institutional networks structure Formal sectoral networks with disconnected agendas Informal and formal cross-sectoral networks interacting
Governance type Authoritarian, state-driven technocratic governance type Participatory and reflexive dynamic among societal sectors; polycentric
Civil society role Civil society unable to participate in the decision-making processes of the energy sector Civil society is supporting decision-making, promoting dialogue, production of knowledge and integrating new perspectives
Cultural change Education No nation-wide environmental education programs for the different levels of education Society is well educated about environment and sustainability through formal programs for all levels of education
Mindset change Neither information nor knowledge is regularly disseminated about the changes needed in the energy system. Long-term communication campaigns are disseminating information driving mindset change
There is no experimentation with new models of organisation, business and sectoral interaction. Knowledge and social innovation platforms are part of the sectoral culture
Consumer behaviour Consumers are not environmentally aware Consumers are socially and environmentally responsible in regards to the selection of efficient artefacts and their energy use
Consumers are not actively part of the renewable energy market Consumers are becoming prosumers (producers and consumers). Prosumers sell and buy renewable energy
Agenda intersection Water-food-energy nexus Lack of integration of the political agendas of the Ministry of Energy with the Secretary of Water and the Ministry of Agriculture There are formal and informal fora’s where actors of the three sectors interact and produce solution-oriented knowledge
Environment/climate change-energy nexus Environmental ministry does not have strong influence on the decision-making process of the energy planning Environmental and renewable energy actors from academia, business sector, NGOs and government have developed mechanisms for interactions and decision-making support
Transportation (mobility)-energy nexus Transport and energy agendas do not have a strong interface. Inefficient individual fossil-fuel-based systems are promoted Efficient, social and environmental friendly multi-modal systems are implemented with the support of participatory planning process involving the Ministry of Transport, subnational levels (municipalities) and cross-sectoral stakeholders
Social development-energy nexus There isn’t an energy social agenda where social and energy strategies have an interplay A cross-sectoral energy social agenda is implemented in order to deal with energy-justice, energy-poverty, energy-equity and energy-democracy
Productive matrix-energy nexus Crude oil is the main export product and will remain for the next 10 years until the reserves decline dramatically Renewable electricity is fuelling the productive matrix transformation by electrifying the production of goods and services for export
International affairs-energy nexus Weak regional energy integration processes. There are no complementarity strategies Strong energy systems integration processes within the South American region promoting resources complementarity