Skip to main content
Article thumbnail
Location of Repository

Understanding the adoption of solar power technologies in the UK domestic sector

By Adam Faiers


The aim of this thesis was to provide new insights into the adoption of solar power technologies. Policy has identified solar technologies capable of providing domestic carbon reductions but limitations such as high capital costs and poor productivity are preventing widespread adoption. The research problem was that neither the attitudes of householders to the technology, nor their adoption decision processes had previously been investigated. If these could be understood, policy interventions might be more effective. This research presents previously unseen adoption curves for solar power systems, which by volume are less significant than conventional energy efficiency technologies, but the ‘S’ curve shows a rate of adoption similar to insulation and boiler systems. In addition, this research presents a comprehensive set of constructs that householders use as heuristics in their decision making process. These constructs were used in a survey of householders that showed both innovative and pragmatic tendencies in order to gain insight to their attitudes towards the systems. The results of this survey highlighted that adopters are mostly positive to solar power systems, especially the environmental aspects. However, on aesthetic, operational and financial issues, the responses indicated less positive attitudes by the ‘pragmatic’ majority. The survey confirmed the presence of a previously theorised ‘chasm’ that demonstrated significant differences between earlier and later adopters. This highlighted seven aspects of the technology that developers should consider, and also a difference in the decision making process followed by the two sets of adopters. Policy insights are discussed in relation to this

Publisher: Cranfield University
Year: 2009
OAI identifier:
Provided by: Cranfield CERES

Suggested articles


  1. (2001). A cognitive dissonance interpretation of consistencies and inconsistencies in environmentally friendly behaviour. doi
  2. (1999). A cognitive model on attitude towards technology adoption. doi
  3. (2006). A comparative multi-variate analysis of household energy requirements in Australia, doi
  4. (1987). A framework for the formation and structure of consumer expectations: review and propositions. doi
  5. (2001). A R Y Groups Count Sum Average Variance
  6. (1995). A stakeholder theory approach to designing environmental marketing strategy. doi
  7. (2002). A stakeholder-integrated approach to health care management. doi
  8. (2004). A theory of identification. doi
  9. (2004). Advances in solar thermal electricity technology. doi
  10. (2005). An exploration of values in ethical consumer decision making. doi
  11. (2002). Anova: Single Factor Insulation SUMMARY Groups Count Sum Average Variance
  12. (2002). Anova: Single Factor Solar SUMMARY Groups Count Sum Average Variance
  13. (2002). Attitude functions in consumer research: comparing value-attitude relations in individualist and collectivist cultures. doi
  14. (2005). Available online
  15. (1998). Banks, retailers and their customers: a relationship marketing perspective. doi
  16. (2006). Bio-energy in the Baltic States; Current policy and future development. doi
  17. (2004). Can green consumerism replace environmental regulation? – a differentiated-products example. doi
  18. (2006). Climate Change. The UK Programme
  19. (2000). Competing technologies and the diffusion of innovations: the emergence of energy-efficient lamps in the residential sector. doi
  20. (2004). Complexity and learning behaviours in product innovation doi
  21. (2005). Consumer attitude towards the future and some purchase patterns. doi
  22. (2003). Consumer demand for ‘green energy’ and energy efficiency. doi
  23. (1999). Consumer preferences for forthcoming innovations: the case for high definition television. doi
  24. (2001). Consumer price sensitivity and price thresholds. doi
  25. (1998). Consumer purchase motives and product perceptions: A laddering study on vegetable oil in three countries. doi
  26. (2002). Consumers influence on the thermal performance of small SDHW systems – theoretical investigations. doi
  27. (2001). Cost Benefit Analysis for solar water heating systems. doi
  28. (2003). Cost-benefit analysis of energy scenarios for the Mexican power sector. doi
  29. (2003). Critical factors of WAP services adoption: an empirical study. doi
  30. (2004). Design of coordinated energy and environmental policies: use of multi-criteria decision-making. doi
  31. (2001). Developing a freight strategy: the use of a collaborative learning process to secure stakeholder input. doi
  32. (2003). Diffusion of green power products in Switzerland. doi
  33. (2003). Does the use of Solar Home Systems (SHS) contribute to climate protection. Renewable Energy. doi
  34. (2003). DTI (2005b) Consumer protection in energy supply: the role of the 28 Day Rule Ofgem submission to the Energy Services Working Group
  35. (2004). Dynamics of technology shifts in the household sector—implications for clean development mechanism. doi
  36. (1996). Ecologically friendly buying – theoretical implications of a phenomenological perspective. doi
  37. (1997). Effective HIV/AIDS prevention communication strategies to reach culturally unique populations: lessons learned in doi
  38. (2003). English House Condition Survey
  39. (2007). Environmental effects of energy policy in Sicily: the role of renewable energy. doi
  40. (2000). Environmentally responsible purchase behaviour: a test of a consumer model. doi
  41. (1981). Exploring the Consumer Decision Process in the Adoption of Solar Energy Systems. doi
  42. (2004). Exploring the relationship between money attitudes and Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. doi
  43. (2007). Generate your own energy guidelines. Available online at solar_water_heating.
  44. (2004). Geothermal energy in Turkey: the sustainable future. doi
  45. (2006). Green electricity policies in the Netherlands: an analysis of policy decisions. doi
  46. (1999). Green Marketing and Azjens theory of planned behaviour: a cross-market examination. doi
  47. (1998). Green power marketing: increasing customer demand for renewable energy. doi
  48. (2004). Green’ Consumption – no solution for Climate Change. doi
  49. (2005). Housing in England 2003/04 Part 1: Trends
  50. (2002). Human values and the emergence of a sustainable consumption pattern: a panel study. doi
  51. (2004). Impact of process change on customer perception of waiting time: a field study. doi
  52. (2001). Impediments to consumer adoption of sustainable transportation; Alternative fuel vehicles. doi
  53. (2007). Improving the evidence base for energy policy; The role of systematic reviews. doi
  54. (2005). In search of a golden blend: perspectives on the marketing of fair trade coffee. doi
  55. (2005). Incorporating consumers’ motivations into the Theory of Reasoned Action. doi
  56. (2004). Information programs for technology adoption: the case of energy-efficiency audits. doi
  57. (2005). Innovation in the service sector: The demand for servicespecific innovation measurement concepts and typologies doi
  58. (2005). Lead markets and regulation: a framework for analyzing the international diffusion of environmental innovations. doi
  59. (2003). Local Power: The community route to financing renewable energy.
  60. (2000). Marketing of a Financial Innovation: Commercial use of the Euro by European Companies prior to Mandatory adoption. doi
  61. (2003). Merck and AIDS activists: engagement as a framework for extending issues management. doi
  62. (2001). Monthly Installations of High Efficiency Boilers 2001-2005 Cumulative annual figures are shown in brackets
  63. (2002). Monthly Sales of Insulation Measures 2002-2005 (cumulative annual sales in brackets)
  64. (2002). Monthly Sales of Solar Thermal and PV Sales 2002-2005 (cumulative annual sales in brackets)
  65. (1999). New and Renewable Energy. Prospects for the 21 st Century.
  66. (1990). New product diffusion models in marketing; A review and directions for research. doi
  67. (2007). On the importance of equity in international climate policy; An empirical analysis. doi
  68. (2002). Organic purchasing motivations and attitudes: are they ethical? doi
  69. (1999). Partnerships: A path to sustainability. doi
  70. (2001). Pathways to urban sustainability. doi
  71. (1994). Perceived attributes of ATMs and their marketing implications. doi
  72. (2001). Perspectives on roadmaps: how organisations talk about the future. doi
  73. (2002). Policy instruments fostering wind energy projects – a multi-perspective evaluation approach. doi
  74. (2003). Predicting the urban solar fraction: a methodology for energy advisors and planners based on GIS. doi
  75. (2003). Price fairness and its asymmetric effects on overall price, quality, and value judgments: the case of an upscale hotel. doi
  76. (2004). Public transport and car-sharing—benefits and effects of combined services doi
  77. (2001). Re-evaluating green marketing: A strategic approach. Business Horizons. doi
  78. (2004). Recent developments in Photovoltaics. doi
  79. (2002). Reducing carbon emissions through improved household energy efficiency in the UK. doi
  80. (2005). Regional Planning Guidance (9). Available online at
  81. (2004). Renewable energy policy in doi
  82. (2003). Renewable energy projects: structuring a multi-criteria group decision-making framework. doi
  83. (2004). Replacing diesel by solar in the Amazon: short-term economic feasibility of PV-diesel hybrid systems. doi
  84. (2005). Separate and joint effects of medium type on consumer responses: a comparison of television, print, and the internet. doi
  85. (2007). Serious about Gas Prices. Published on the The American Conservative Union Foundation website. Available online at
  86. (2002). So that’s what it is”: Examining the Impact of Analogy on Consumers’ Knowledge Development for Really New Products. doi
  87. (2002). Social class influences on purchase evaluation criteria. doi
  88. (2003). Solar Thermal in the EU; A renewable energy mosaic. REFOCUS March/April Edition. Elsevier Science.
  89. (2003). Spillover of environmentally friendly consumer behaviour. doi
  90. Stafford M.R.(1994) Green issues: Dimensions of environmental concern. doi
  91. (2002). Telecommunications demand forecasting – a review. doi
  92. (2001). The Blue Book: Energy Report
  93. (2004). The communication grid: an introduction of a model of four communication strategies. doi
  94. (2000). The diffusion of renewable energy technology: an analytical framework and key issues for research. doi
  95. (2004). The effectiveness of different policy regimes for promoting wind power: Experiences from the states. doi
  96. (1997). The Five V’s – a buyers perspective of the marketing mix.
  97. (2007). The Green Energy Website. Available at
  98. (1995). The impact of social values on food related attitudes. doi
  99. (2001). The importance of beliefs and purchase criteria in the choice of eco-labelled food products. doi
  100. (2002). The influence of software developers’ creative style on their attitudes to and assimilation of software process innovation. Information and Management doi
  101. (2004). The learning potential of photovoltaics: implications for energy policy. doi
  102. (1999). The market for solar photovoltaics. doi
  103. (2006). The promotional impacts of green power products on renewable energy sources: direct and indirect eco-effects. doi
  104. (1994). The result of the ANOVA test is a criterion figure (F Crit), which is compared to the Test Statistic. The test statistic is generated from a table of statistics derived from the normal distribution (See Dillon et al.
  105. (1997). The role of prices in models of Innovation Decision. doi
  106. (1998). The social marketing model for disseminating research-based treatments to addictions treatments providers. doi
  107. (2003). The solar thermal market in Greece – review and perspectives. doi
  108. (2005). The sustainable diffusion of renewable energy technologies as an example of an innovation-focused policy. doi
  109. (2003). The transformation of technological regimes. doi
  110. (2006). Tomorrows Climate, Todays Challenge. 4NC. The UK’s fourth national communication under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Reference PB 11862.
  111. (1999). Toward a new theory of the firm: a critique of stakeholder ‘theory’. doi
  112. UK Energy Sector Indicators 2005; A supplement to the Second annual report on the Energy White Paper “Our Energy Future – Creating a Low Carbon Economy” Available online at Reference: DTI/Pub 7921/1.5k/07/05/NP.
  113. (2002). Understanding and managing innovation processes. doi
  114. (2005). Understanding mobile data services adoption: Demography, attitudes or needs? doi
  115. (2000). Unraveling to links between dimensions of innovation and organisational performance. doi
  116. (2000). Use of marketing to disseminate brief alcohol intervention to general practitioners: promoting health care interventions to health promoters. doi
  117. (2001). Using Innovation Diffusion Theory to guide collaboration technology evaluation: work in progress. doi
  118. (1995). Using strategic alliances to develop credible green marketing. doi
  119. (2001). Viewpoints on Sustainable Energy in the East Midlands. A study of Current Energy Projects and Future Prospects. Final Report. Land Use Consultants and IT Power.
  120. (2001). Visual perception theories and communicating construction industry concepts. doi
  121. (2000). Voluntary initiatives to address climate change in the EU. doi
  122. (1996). Wasteful food consumption: Trends in food and packaging waste. doi
  123. (2005). What and where are environmental values? Assessing the impacts of current diversity of use of ‘environmental’ and ‘World heritage’ values. doi
  124. (2001). What’s in it for the customers? Successfully marketing green clothes. doi
  125. (1996). When Adoption Theory Fails.
  126. (2004). Willingness to accept climate change strategies: the effect of values and norms. doi
  127. (2007). Wind electricity in Denmark; A survey of policies, their effectiveness and factors motivating their introduction. doi

To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.