How can we co-create sustainable energy solutions with local communities and citizens?

 What is energy citizenship and how does it change the way we think about energy?

How can we mainstream energy communities to speed up energy transition?

Join the and learn more about empowering energy citizens!

About the Academy

Community Energy Academy will equip you with the up-to-date knowledge about energy citizenship and energy communities (including developments in regulations and policies), a holistic understanding of citizen engagement in energy systems, and practical action planning tools and networks to implement inclusive and people-centred energy initiatives – starting from your community. You will learn about the different types of community energy initiatives and how they can be implemented in different contexts.

Community Energy Academy builds on insights from the EC²-project funded EU Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme. The training is organised by ICLEI Europe in collaboration with leading European universities and research centers, pioneering municipalities, and engaged energy communities. 

Join us to become part of the energy citizenship movement!

Why energy communities?

People have the right to a just energy transition. In recent years, energy communities have gained strong support from EU and national governments as a collective and decentralized form of energy production and consumption. They are promoted as a method to better engage citizens in clean energy transition, reduce the cost of energy, tackle energy poverty, and improve the resilience of energy systems. Research estimates that over 80 % of EU’s households could contribute to renewable energy production through actions such as participating in a community initiative (CE Delf, 2016). However, energy communities and other citizen-led energy actions (e.g. prosumerism) are still a niche in our energy markets. Much work needs to be done to mainstream energy actions and harness the full potential democratic energy systems in empowering energy citizens.

Course content

Thematic modules

Each module is dedicated to a specific topic corresponding to the different dimensions of energy citizenship. These themes emerged from the research of barriers and enablers conducted with energy citizens and communities across Europe. You will learn both theory and practice of energy citizenship.

Self-learning materials

Monthly online materials with insights related to the thematic module learning at your own pace. Materials include short explainer videos, articles and case study stories of innovative energy citizenship actions, possibilities to engage with the learning community and trainers via the discussion forum feature. The online materials will require approximately 15-30 minutes of engagement.

Live sessions

The monthly 2-hour live training (in Zoom) provides you with an interactive opportunity to learn directly from energy citizenship leaders and discuss with other learners across Europe. The facilitated sessions aim to help you to dive deeper in the topics and provide a space to share experiences, connect the theory to practical action, and build personal connections with other actors working with or interested in innovative citizen engagement for energy actions in your region and beyond. Based on the registrations, the Academy will organise language-specific learning groups and support in engaging with different languages. 

Who can join?

The course content is designed for public administrators, leaders and members of energy communities, researchers, and other sustainability experts. Participation is free of charge and flexible, including both monthly live training sessions and self-paced learning materials. 

What you’ll learn

Theory and practice of energy citizenship:

Understanding the definition and dimensions of energy citizenship and how it contributes to the sustainable energy transitions.

Developing people-centred energy initiatives, including energy communities, that respond to everyone’s needs and aspirations.

Understanding the barriers that people face in their energy citizenship journey and how to overcome them (tools, methods, good practices).

Networking with an international learning community, meeting and collaborating with other people-centered energy actors


Time Module topic

April 2023

Live session: 19.4.2023,

10:00-12:00 CET (Zoom)


Energy citizenship - A missing piece to the energy transition puzzle? Introduction to Community Energy Academy

ICLEI with ZSI - The Centre for Social Innovation

May 2023

Live session: 31.5.2023,

10:00-12:00 CET (Zoom)


How to provide reliable information and facilitate the access to energy knowledge for citizens

ICLEI with University of Graz

June 2023

Live session 28.6.2023,

10:00-12:00 CET (Zoom)


What housing-related factors and inequalities hinder people’s engagement in energy transitions? How can housing-related initiatives facilitate energy citizenship? 

ICLEI with University of Graz

Summer break

September 2023

Live session



How to harness the potential of co-creation and collaborative governance in energy actions?

ICLEI with Wroclaw University of Economics and Business

November 2023

Live session 

10:00-12:00 CET 


How can different financing and funding models hinder or enable energy citizenship and energy communities? 

ICLEI with Wroclaw University of Economics and Business

December 2023

Live session



What is the relationship between energy communities and energy citizenship? What motivates people to act? 

ICLEI with Leipzig University & University of Groningen

January-March 2024

2 advanced modules: Practical action planning for local community energy initiatives