Elaine Forde is a Lecturer in the Morgan Academy at Swansea University. Her background is in social science, and she is an experienced ethnographer, having completed long-term fieldwork in west Wales, and more recently, São Tomé et Príncipe in West Africa.
Elaine’s thematic interest is in Energy Research, her doctoral research (Goldsmiths, University of London) examined the activism and related policy context for living off-grid in contemporary Wales. Having completed a number of smaller ethnographic projects in Wales, more recently she has worked on developing a model for community energy consultation as a route to broader renewable energy technology acceptance, and exploring opportunities for locally-owned micro-grid delivery that would address the infrastructural inequalities which see a staggering proportion of rural or outlying homes not connected to major energy grids.
Since joining Swansea University, Elaine has been exploring interdisciplinary collaboration in engineering research into new renewable energy technologies. Elaine consults on and investigates the everyday use, uptake and acceptance of domestic technologies based on renewable energy sources in the early innovation stages. This feeds a wider body of research which examines how societies might become better equipped for the large-scale adoption of renewable energy technologies and sources, which will be characterised by decentralisation, peer to peer supply relationships and a proliferation of local- or micro-grids.