Financial volume classes
Small: Below... €
Large: Greater than... €
The Morphological Box for Energy Communities presents the main characteristics of community
energy projects in the EU Member States and shows the frequency of occurrence of the possible
design options and the main interdependencies between them in the underlying database.
On the one hand, the tool supports EC developers to capture the recurrent design options and thus identify possible facilitated pathways in specific territorial contexts. On the other hand, it also supports policy makers at different levels to focus on possible weaknesses of the current favourable environment and thus recommend possible areas for potential interventions.
The backend of this tool allows existing ECs, members of nascent ECs and researchers to add their EC projects to the database in order to increase the number of cases included in the database and thus make the results more robust over time.
The 2018/19 Clean Energy Package of the European Union introduced a wide range of policy
measures to further advance the Energy Transition, with one focus being low-carbon, renewable
energy (RE) to replace fossil-based sources. RE production is typically disaggregated locally, legally,
and in terms of ownership of the production facilities. Moreover, RE production technologies are
various, and so are their respective usage, investment schemes, investors, geographic and financial
properties, and, as a result, their support measures. With a focus on the new regulatory framework
of the Directive on the Internal Energy Market (IEMD) and the recast of the Renewable Energy
Directive (RED II), we analyse best practice business models for Energy Communities (ECs).
To capture the multitude of pluri-dimensional design perspectives for ECs this online tool provides access to an interactive database, the “Morphological Box for Energy Communities”. The tool enables researchers and policy makers to identify the constellations for participation models that best fit the new EU policy strategy and to show opportunities with regard to combinations underused or not at all exploited yet. The aim of this project is to contribute to the further development of Energy Transition participation models in general and ECs in particular and
The morphological box displays a data base of Renewable energy communities (RECs) and
Citizen Energy Communities (CECs) across the EU Member States. Cases are
described by 11 characteristics, shown as the left aligned headlines for each of the
box’s rows. Each row contains design options corresponding to the given
characteristic. For each case contained in the database, a design option chosen is
highlighted in colour), or if not applied, marked white.
There are three options for analysis under the “Select A Case” menu above the box:
Clicking a design option filters the data base for all cases that have used (left click)
or not used (right click) the respective design option. Filtering for one of the design
options, all cases that do not share this design option value are dropped. By selecting,
say, design option “households” with the characteristic “application sector” as point of
departure, the software iterates through all cases, placing those that share the same
value considering “households” (set or not set) in the filter results. From the
remaining cases in the filter results, for each characteristic, the frequency of
occurrence is shown in different shades of colour.
For each characteristic, the most frequently applied design options are connected with semi-transparent lines. The thickness of these lines represents the skewness (or unevenness of the distribution) per characteristic, e.g., whether the respective design options are evenly distributed across their characteristic, or unevenly. For example, if the above-mentioned filtered cases for selection “households” are mostly “large” in terms of “financial volume”, then the line to that design option is bold. For characteristic “support”, however, the most frequent design option is “investment”, but still encompasses only 28% of the filter cases, so the line is thinner. In constellations where two or more design options have the same top value as “most frequently used”, multiple lines are drawn.
Overall, the line combinations display prevalent business models consisting of different combinations of design options for the different characteristics. For example, filtering with the characteristic (row) “application sector” as point of departure and by design option (cell) “households” (which is then highlighted to mark that this is the filter of the present analysis), one sees that most projects involving consumer co-ownership are photovoltaics (PV) projects (“conversion technology”), aim at citizens (“cooperating partner/customer”), and are situated in rural areas (“geography”). Furthermore, it can be seen that these projects are usually combined with energy efficiency (EE) measures, and are organized as coops (one-member-one-vote), just to mention a few characteristics. Note that the classification of the financial volume (in Euro) as small, medium, or large depends on conversion and application technology and is based on the rules shown in the following table:
There are several REC/CEC cases already stored in the data base. You can select cases
from the dropdown menu and inspect their properties. Click design options using the left
mouse button to filter all cases for those whose respective design option is set, or
click using the right mouse button to filter all cases for those whose respective design
option is not set. After filtering, the filter results are shown. For each row, the
design options are coloured in different shades of colour (customizable using the
“configure” button), showing the distribution of design options used by the filtered
Also, a “tree” connecting the most dominantly used design options by the filtered REC/CEC cases from row to row is generated. The row ordering is changeable. You can use the mouse wheel to roll the figurative “barrel” onto which the box is attached, or you can hold and drag rows around by their row headline (the characteristic). Finally, be sure to check the “configure” menu to customize the user interface to your needs.