In many EU countries, the concept of Demand Response (DR) is still mostly reserved for large individual facilities in the commercial and industrial sectors, while clearly leaving behind the considerable demand flexibility potential and millions of distributed energy assets existing in the residential sector. On top of this, recent studies have shown that the consumer engagement potential for DR in the residential sector is far from tapped. However, while proven to be effective to a certain extent, the existing ICT solutions still face significant adoption barriers due to technology acceptance, use and effectiveness. HESTIA aims to provide a cost-effective solution for the next-generation demand response services which will leverage the consumer engagement, energy and non-energy services, while dealing with both energy supply and demand side in a holistic manner.
The paradigm shift proposed by HESTIA will enable residential DR services through: (i) exploitation of energy demand flexibility by engaging the end consumers in demand-side management (DSM) activities, and (ii) valorisation of energy efficiency in multi-carrier energy dispatching and optimal operation of building systems, as part of a hybrid form of demand response which combines both explicit and implicit DR mechanisms. As a driving force, HESTIA will leverage the consumer engagement as part of cooperative DR strategy at the community level, i.e. clusters of individual consumers and prosumers, by joining the Citizen Energy Community (CEC) and Renewable Energy Community (REC) concepts together. To motivate the consumers to actively participate (e.g. by manually influencing the energy demand curve), HESTIA will leverage the financial (ensuring the cost savings), environmental (improving the environmental impact) and social drivers (related to making participation meaningful, e.g. through social race and community sentiment), but, at the same time, cross-fertilize them to maximize the impact. The key strategy to ensure solutions will work well in an everyday context of consumers, as that HESTIA will involve the users (residents) in the designing of the solutions through participatory co-design processes. Altogether, HESTIA will create community engagement methodology and organisational tools with a high acceptance, that can be replicated and provide the corresponding tailored toolsets for a broader rollout