To promote the idea of a consumer-centric renewable energy system and the opportunities arising through new and local market models, the UCL Energy Institute developed a peer-to-peer energy trading board-game “Watts the Deal?”.
Two classes of the Istituto Istruzione Superiore Enrico de Nicola, a high school in Piove di Sacco, Italy, used the game to introduce the concept of digitalization and local markets in a decentralized energy system. After some introductory presentation about the current energy transition and the move towards a decarbonised energy system by Jan Marc Schwidtal (PhD student at the University of Padua and member/participant at the IEA Users TCP Global Observatory on P2P, TE and CSC) the game delivered a vivid experience and practical insights to the 50 students playing the game. Both, the challenge of matching fluctuating electricity generation from renewable sources with varying demands as well as the concept of bargaining and trading with neighbours brought a lot of fun to the young students (aged 14-15 years). While the two hours at disposal with each of the two classes were flying by, it proved the potential of direct interaction with young students to awaken their interest for a changing energy reality.
Written by Jan Marc Schwidtal from University of Padua