Recently, social scientists and philosophers have shown increased interest in questions of social, global and intergenerational justice related to energy production and consumption. Topics that have been discussed are, for example, questions about availability and affordability of energy and questions about the negative environmental impacts of energy production. The capability approach is today one of the most influential theoretical frameworks for analyzing issues of justice, and there have been a few attempts to employ it within the field of energy justice. The purpose of the conference is to further explore the potential of the capability approach for conceptualizing and studying issues of energy justice. The conference will cover questions about energy poverty, climate and energy justice, and energy justice and sustainability. The invited speakers are the following well-qualified scholars in the field of energy and climate justice:

-Rosie Day, Senior Lecturer in Environment and Society. Day has a background in Environmental Human Geography and has made important contributions to social science research on energy consumption.

– Kirsten Jenkins, Lecturer in Human Geography and Sustainability Development at the University of Brighton. Jenkins have published extensively on energy justice from a social science perspective.

-Gordon Walker, Professor at the Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University. Walker has a background in social science and has made important contributions to the debate on environmental justice.

-Rafaela Hillerbrand, Professor of Philosophy of Science and Technology at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, German. Hillerbrand has made important contributions to the ethical debate on energy systems and has applied the capability approach to questions of energy production and sustainability.

-Behnam Taebi, Associate Professor in Ethics of Technology, at Delft University of Technology, Netherlands. Taebi has published extensively on energy production, especially nuclear energy production, and justice.

-Stephen Gardiner, Professor of Philosophy and Ben Rabinowitz Endowed Professor of Human Dimensions of the Environment at the University of Washington. Gardiner is one of the leading researchers in the area of climate ethics.

Conference organizers: Anders Melin, Associate Professor in Ethics, Malmö University, David Kronlid, Associate Professor in Ethics, Uppsala University.

Contact: Anders Melin,


Preliminary program

12 September:

9:00-10:00: Registration, coffee/tea

10:00-11:00: Gordon Walker: Making sense of energy justice, capabilities, social practice and rights

11:00: 12:00: Rafaela Hillerbrand: Energy justice, sustainability and the capability approach

12:00-13:30: Lunch

13:30-14:30: Stephen Gardiner: Climate and energy justice

14:30-15:30: Kirsten Jenkins: Responsibility for energy justice

15:30-16:00: Coffee break

16:00-17:00: Rosie Day: Energy poverty and the capability approach

17:00-18:00: Behnam Taebi: Energy justice and normative uncertainties

18:30: Conference dinner


13 September:

8:30-10:00: Paper sessions

10:00-10:30: Coffee break

10:30-12:00 Paper sessions

12:00-13:30 Lunch

13:30- 15:00: Paper sessions

15:00-15:30: Coffee break

15:30-16:30: Anders Melin, David Kronlid: Intergenerational energy justice and the capability approach

16:30: End of conference


Conference venue

The conference will take place in the conference centre Sankt Gertrud close to Malmö Central Station (


Call for papers


We welcome papers that concern all issues related to energy justice from the perspective of social science or philosophy. It can be questions of social, global and intergenerational justice, as well as justice towards non-human life forms. The papers can be either more empirical or more theoretical. If necessary, we will prioritize papers that discuss how the capability approach can be employed for conceptualizing and studying issues of energy justice. Send an abstract, no more than 250 words, to Anders Melin, Write ¨energyabstract¨ in the subject field. State also your current position.

The deadline for sending in abstracts is 6 August at 24:00 (Swedish time). Date of notification whether your abstract has been accepted: 9 August.




The cost of the conference is 2000 SEK (approx. 190 Euro). The conference dinner on 12 September costs 600 SEK extra.

Deadline for registration: 13 August at 15:00 (Swedish time).

Register by sending an e-mail to Anders Melin ( Write “energyconference” in the subject field. The e-mail should contain the following information:

  • Your name
  • Your position
  • Your workplace address
  • Your e-mail address
  • Mobile phone number
  • Whether you want to join the conference dinner on 12 September
  • Diet (vegetarian, vegan, etc.)
  • Food allergies
  • VAT no/momsregistreringsnummer
  • Name and address of the receiver of the invoice

Please also inform us if you have any physical disability since the conference centre would like to know in advance.

After registration, you will be notified whether you have received a place at the conference and we will send an invoice. Please note that the registration is binding.


Getting to Malmö

Malmö is situated in the south of Sweden close to Copenhagen Airport with good communications to all parts of the world. From the airport you can take the train or taxi to Malmö. The train takes about 25 minutes to reach the Central Station in Malmö, which is close to the conference venue. Malmö Airport is a smaller airport with some international flights. From Malmö Airport you can reach Malmö Central Station by bus in about 50 minutes.



There are several hotels close to the conference venue. Here are a few examples:

Radisson Blu Hotel,

Moment Hotels,

Comfort Hotel,


Third Publication

The third publication from the project is the following book chapter: Köckler, Heike, Deguen, Severiné, Ranzi, Andrea, Melin, Anders, Walker, Gordon: “Environmental Justice in Western Europe”, in R. Holifield, J. Chakraborty, G. Walker (Eds.), Routledge Handbook of Environmental Justice, Abingdon: Routledge, 2017, ISBN: 978-1-138-93282-1, pp. 627-640.

Second publication

Tulsa Jansson, PhD-candidate, has published an article with the title “Sen’s Perfectionist “Reason to Value” in “Public Reason: Journal of Political and Moral Philosophy”, Vol. 7, No. 1-2, 2015 (

First publication

The first article from the project, Melin, Anders, Kronlid, David: “Should We Ascribe Capabilities to Animals?  A Critical Analysis of the Extension of Nussbaum’s Capabilities Approach”, have been published in “De Ethica” (

Attending Senix 2016 – investigating the role of social science in low carbon energy mix

13-15th of June we will be attending the second conference on the role of Social Science in the Energy transition.

The SENIX Conferences help bridging the gap between present day conditions and full recognition of the necessity to bring in the social issues up-front in energy policies, programmes and projects. On May 25-27, 2015 the first SENIX conference was  held in Stockholm and the programme is available on the web site Anders Melin and Tulsa Jansson presented papers on the 2015 conference. In June Tulsa Jansson will be leading a community of inquiry on the topic of development.

Conference “Ethics and Governance of Energy Technologies” in Eindhoven, The Netherlands

Tulsa and Anders participated in the conference “Ethics and Governance of Energy Technologies” at Eindhoven University of Technology on the 15th-16th of January. Here is the programme: Anders was one of the keynote presenters, here is the powerpoint:

Energy and Justice

This is the blogg of the research project “Energy and Justice – an Ethical Analysis of Swedish Energy Politics, based on the Capability Approach”. The project participants are Associate Professor Anders Melin, Associate Professor David Kronlid and PhD-candidate Tulsa Jansson.