Intelliekon – Acceptance of Electricity Consumption Feedback

Within the Intelliekon project, ISOE, together with two Fraunhofer institutes (ISE and ISI) and nine energy suppliers, is investigating the impact of intelligent electricity m

Research approach

The team has field-tested two options for electricity consumption feedback: customers receive consumption data either via a web portal or by post. The ISOE team is responsible for conducting the socio-empirical surveys for the joint project. 

Initial explorative phase

During the explorative phase, the team looked at the options favoured and the data presentation formats most likely to prove successful: in other words not only what consumers want but what they would actually use. The issue at stake here is the readily comprehensible depiction of consumption figures and whether or not customers would like support and advice in this respect. 

Field testing of the feedback systems

From the spring of 2009 to the autumn of 2010, the network tested different feedback options in the participating towns and cities. The ISOE team interviewed more than 2,000 people in Germany and Austria about their experiences. They were seeking to discover which form of feedback consumers would like and how much they would be willing to pay for it. 

ISI analysed whether or not the participating households actually do save electricity as a result of feedback. The ecological effect brought about by the savings (in carbon-dioxide emissions) made was examined by ISE.  


It is impossible to pinpoint the cause of increased consumption from a single annual electricity bill. The principle of providing users with regular feedback about their electricity consumption and costs could prove helpful here. With the opportunity to compare their electricity consumption on a monthly basis, users can learn to use their appliances in a more energy-efficient way.

Research partners

Fraunhofer-Institut für Solare Energiesysteme ISE, Freiburg (lead)
Fraunhofer Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung ISI (Karlsruhe)

EVB Energie AG (Velbert)
Social Science Advice: Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Glatzer, Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main, Fachbereich Gesellschaftswissenschaften

Commercial partners

Energieversorgung Oelde
Linz Strom AG 

SVO Energie Celle

swb Vertrieb Bremen GmbH
Stadtwerke Hassfurt

Stadtwerke Münster

Stadtwerke Schwerte

Stadtwerke Ulm

Technische Werke Kaiserslautern


Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)


2008/04 – 2011/12