International Development, Community and Environment (IDCE)

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Dual Degree Master of Business Administration/Master of Science in Environmental Science and Policy (MBA/ESP)


International Development, Community and Environment

Chief Instructor

Laura M. Graves

Second Reader

Charles C. Agosta

Third Reader

Nicholas Corsetti


Over the past decade, America’s utility grid has undergone fundamental changes on a scale not seen during the past 100 years (Energetics Incorporated, 2014). These changes have largely been driven by the need to replace aging infrastructure, modernize the grid, incorporate new sources of energy, and better balance the supply and demand of energy. In order to address some of these changes, utilities have increasingly implemented smart grid programs that provide customers with consumer-focused demand response technologies that aim to reduce peak demand. This report examined the success these technologies have in reducing peak demand for smart grid programs by utilizing National Grid’s Smart Energy Solutions (SES) program as a case study and drawing on learnings from other smart grid programs. By using benchmarking and a hierarchy of effects marketing analysis, structural and psychological barriers to customer adoption of these technologies were identified and National Grid was provided with six recommendations for overcoming these barriers to increase technology adoption and reduce peak demand.



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