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Leveraging user-based innovation in vehicle-to-X and vehicle-to-grid adoption: A Nordic case study

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  • Lance Noel, University of Sussex, Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE)
  • ,
  • Gerardo Zarazua de Rubens
  • ,
  • Johannes Kester, University of Oxford
  • ,
  • Benjamin K. Sovacool

While vehicle-to-grid technology could provide substantial benefits to consumers and society, its adoption has been confined to a niche and relatively stagnant. In this article, we study the role of user-based innovations in increasing the acceptance and adoption of niche technologies such as vehicle-to-grid. To do so, we connect three interrelated concepts—tinkering, testing and tacit knowledge—and then theorize how they interact in three theories—diffusion of innovation, social construction of technology, and the multi-level perspective. Drawing from a rich set of original data, we then apply the theorization of user-based innovation to the adoption of vehicle-to-grid in the Nordic region, by focusing on how users can influence an emerging state-of-the-art innovation, vehicle-to-X. We find that the three concepts of tinkering, testing, and tacit knowledge should be encouraged in order to accelerate and stabilize the adoption of vehicle-to-grid. We conclude the study by examining how the theorization of tinkering may benefit the understanding of other technologies’ diffusion pathways and recommend directions for future research.

Original languageEnglish
Article number125591
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021

    Research areas

  • Electric mobility, Sustainability transitions, Tinkering, User-based innovation, Vehicle-to-grid

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